Hell’s Kitchen: making short work of Season 7

The producers and suits at Fox are annoying me. I am and have been a fan of “Hell’s Kitchen” for several years now, but I don’t need to see 2 hours of it every Tuesday night. It just seems like they are trying to get the season over with. I mean, we started on June 1 and now there are just 8 contestants left, meaning this season will wrap up way before the fall TV slate is close to beginning. I’m not sure what they’re thinking, but they probably have their reasons. Anyway, I’m committed to this blog, so here we go….

EPISODE 1

This episode began with Chef Ramsay introducing a couple that was about to celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary, Sal and Marcy. Hell’s Kitchen would be catering the party, and the chefs would have to update the menu that Sal and Marcy had for their wedding reception–chicken Kiev, steak Diane, and trout almondine. So far, Ben, new to the red team, was getting along with his teammates. So far.

They each would be responsible in their initial challenge for re-creating the wedding reception dishes and having Sal and Marcy sample them. Nilka and Ed presented their takes on steak Diane, but Nilka admittedly didn’t know what the dish was. Seriously? Ed won. Then Holli and Autumn presented the chicken Kiev interpretations, but the blue teams’ was Sal’s chicken meatballs, which were undercooked. Yikes. Score was tied. Jay and Ben presented their trout dishes and Sal and Marcy each liked a different one. So the score remained tied, but Ramsay was there to break the tie. He chose Ben’s trout and the red team won.

So the red team got to celebrate by going to Frisco’s, a ’50’s style diner, and the blue team had to set the room up for the reception. At dinner service, Jay cut his finger but they made it all more dramatic than it actually was. Ed and Nilka would be making steak Diane table-side. Among the problems in the kitchen, Ben didn’t cook crab cakes enough and then burned them…Sal was not communicating as usual…Holli served raw chicken, and Fran wasn’t observing safety regulations. The losing team was the red team, and they had to choose two consensus nominees for elimination. Fran was an obvious choice, but the other choice was Siobhan, and Ben kept throwing her under the bus, saying she wasn’t as good a cook as everyone else.
But Ramsay told them both to get back in line, and singled out Sal…saying that Sal has had one good dinner service out of seven so far. And really, it was the right choice.

EPISODE 2

This episode began with Siobhan being pissed about having been put on the chopping block, and Ben belittling her some more, saying she wasn’t good enough. Ouch. Then Ramsay told the chefs the next morning to get dressed and get ready to go to one of the most famous French restaurants in Los Angeles. They all got dressed up but the restaurant was a sandwich shop, Phillipe’s, where the French Dip sandwich was first created.

Ramsay announced the first challenge, which was for the chefs to create a gourmet sandwich in 30 minutes using a list of ingredients to choose from that he would provide. They would face off individually and as a team, again, but with 9 chefs one would have to sit out. That was Siobhan, as the red team, led by Ben, forced her out. Ben and Ed squared off with ahi tuna sandwiches and Ramsay liked them both; Holli faced off against Jason, Holli’s duck sandwich vs. Jason’s lobster sandwich, and Ramsay liked them both; and then Fran vs. Jay and Jay won because Fran’s bread was soggy on the inside. Nilka and Autumn then squared off with roast pork sandwiches, and Nilka won. Ramsay asked Siobhan to step forward to break the tie….and her seemingly odd sandwich with prosciutto and several kinds of fruit on challah bread was so good, that Ramsay told the red team they had lost for choosing the wrong person to sit out. Ha! Siobhan let Ben hear it, but Ben stood by the decision, which, at that point, was stupid. Dude, Ramsay chose her sandwich and said it was better than Fran’s!

So the blue team won and took a private jet to wine country, and the red team had to make peanut butter and jelly from scratch for a gourmet menu item. The blue team got tipsy and then downright drunk at the wine tasting lunch, and later Ed, Holli and Siobhan were in the hot tub, and the girls dared Ed to get naked, which he did. Ugh, we didn’t need to see that, even if we didn’t actually see it. Then, the blue team was severely hung over as they had to prep the next morning for dinner service.

They started out strong, as Fran made a good risotto (her first time making it, ever), but then she kept screwing it up, and was very inconsistent. Jason undercooked scallops, and Autumn was screwing up too. Siobhan burned her scallops and then Ramsay made her go out to the bar to eat her mistake. Back in the kitchen, Siobhan came in and Ben pushed her off the seafood station. Then, after more undercooked chicken and beef, Ramsay had had enough…he told the blue team to get out, and then shortly after told the red team to go back to their dorm. He declared no winning team, and told them to nominate two chefs for elimination from each team.

The blue team chose Autumn and Ed, and the red team Siobhan and Fran. Ramsay asked them each to state their case, and as Siobhan was stating hers, he said “That’s it, I’ve had enough,” and sent her home. Basically Ramsay accused her of having no backbone, and letting Ben push her around and off her station. Remember too, that she had let Autumn push her around earlier this season.

So that’s it…we’re down to 8–Ed, Jay, Jason, Ben, Autumn, Fran, Holli and Nilka. I think it’ll be between Ed, Jay, Nilka and Holli at this point, but it should be interesting to see how it shakes out. Ben and Autumn are too cocky without the talent to back it up, and Jason and Fran are one poor service away from going home too.

What do you think? Let me know in the space below and we’ll see you next week….

  

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