Top Chef Colorado Recap

Now That's a Lot of Schnitzel

By Kim Hollis and David Mumpower

January 17, 2018

Wait until you see his dad's nickname.

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Previously on Top Chef, you had the marvelous Jason Lee as your recapper. This week, we sub in as he takes a well-deserved break. With Tu now eliminated, we’ve seen the majority of the weaker players removed from the competition now. What that means is that we’re probably going to see someone good pack their knives today.

After their camping expedition in the previous episode, all of the chefs are struggling to some degree. They have altitude sickness and effectively are dealing with flu-like symptoms (or hangover-like symptoms). Let’s just say that they ALL look rough.

We actually sort of hated that they had the chefs deal with the camping, because it just wasn’t necessary. Top Chef isn’t Survivor, and it isn’t The Amazing Race. These people are here to cook great food, and giving them challenges that can potentially make them ill doesn’t make sense, nor does it serve the competition. Let’s hope that the producers learn from this.

In fact, our feelings on this are justified when Lee Ann has to go to the hospital to be checked out. She had a rough first trimester in her pregnancy, and feels as though she simply cannot risk her baby for the sake of Top Chef. She’s not wrong, and it’s maddening that it should even be a conversation.


So, without Lee Ann, the chefs arrive for their Quickfire challenge. Padma informs them that Lee Ann is doing okay, probably to alleviate nerves and worries during the upcoming cooking competition.

Today’s guest Quickfire judge is our beloved Richard Blais, previous Top Chef All-Stars champion. He flips over a blackboard to reveal menus for each of the chefs. Every chef recognizes the dish they’ve been assigned, because it comes from their own menus at their restaurants (or catering businesses).

Apparently, all of these dishes require a significant amount of time to cook and develop – up to three days, in fact. So, today’s challenge is a nod to Buzzfeed’s tasty videos that instruct people on how to cook complicated dishes quickly. Our chefs will be taking their most complicated dishes and deconstructing them in a way that it could be converted to a Buzzfeed video with the simplified, approachable process to cooking it. The tough part? They have to complete the dishes in 30 minutes. The winner of the challenge will get both immunity and the chance to have their recipe featured in that Buzzfeed tasty video.

Adrienne, who normally loves making hushpuppies, is so frustrated she says she might cry. She just can’t get the mix right in this short amount of time. Mustache Joe gets the idea to make a gnocchi dumpling since there is no possible way to make gnocchi in a half hour. Sounds like an innovative plan that could work.

Chris is making pepper pot shrimp, and says that his daughters would think his competing to be in a Buzzfeed video would be very cool. He jokes that he doesn’t even know what a hashtag is.

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