10 Things You Need to Know About Top Chef Seattle Episode 10

“Josie, Daniel Larusso called. He’d like his headband back.”

This week’s episode featured one very hokey QFC — but a much cooler EC! In a precursor to restaurant wars, the cheftestants were asked to cook a dish that would represent their concept. I love this as it lets chefs cook their own food so that we can get to know them better. 

1. Josie made an “Asians represent!” remark that had everyone in the room rolling their eyes.

2. Padma refers to ginger as one of the most versatile and refreshing ingredients in the world. I’d give that distinction to citrus or mint. I don’t find ginger at all refreshing.

3. Micah used a P-word that I found inappropriate and disparaging. Who are this season’s editors? Are they trying to make us dislike everyone?

4. You can use an iSi canister for more than whipping cream. It’s a great way to infuse flavor through pressure in a brief amount of time, as demonstrated by Kristen.

5. Josie managed to work in a brag about her time as a football player, noting that she can “take a few hits.” If only she could take hints.Continue Reading

Molecular Gastronomy Goes Mainstream in Manhattan

Stock PhotoWylie Dufresne has been playing with his food à la Dr. Frankenstein for years, and while not all restaurants embrace his methods, many elements of his brand of molecular gastronomy have seeped into mainstream dining in the Big Apple. The New York Post reports on Dufresne, chef-owner of wd-50, Dave Arnold, resident mad scientist at the French Culinary Institute and its restaurant L’Ecole (who regularly  blogs about his “experiments” at the FCI), Michael Laiskonis, pastry chef at Le Bernardin, and George Mendes, chef-owner at Aldea, on their use of “meat glue” and other ingredients more likely found in a laboratory than your kitchen cupboard.

Are you a fan of molecular gastronomy’s transformative powers? Or do you prefer more traditional ingredients and techniques?