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Offline apskip

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Hell's Kitchen 11
« on: March 05, 2013, 02:19:28 PM »
On March 12, one week from tonight, Hell's Kitchen 11 telecasts start.

Here's what's at stake and who is competing:

The chefs competing for a $250,000 salary for the head chef position at the Caesar’s Palace Gastropub in Las Vegas are:

Amanda Giblin – executive chef, Orange County NY

Anthony Rodriguez – line chef, New Orleans LA

Barret Beyer – head chef, Long Island NY

Christian Rosati - line cook/sandwich maker, Boston MA

Cyndi Stanimirov - , head chef, Queens NY

Dan Ryan – head cook, Westchester NY

Danielle Bloom – executive chef, Atlanta GA

Gina Aloise – line cook, Bronx NY

Jacqueline Baldassari – roundsman, Florence NJ

Janel Witt – executive chef, Houston TX

Jeremy Madden – lead cook, Los Angeles CA

Jessica Lewis – chef tourant, New York NY

Jon Scallion – chef de cuisine, York PA

Mary Poehnelt – butcher/cook, Butchertown MA

Michael Landnes, executive chef, Planes PA

Nedra Harris – Kitchen Manager, Detroit MI

Ray Alongi – executive chef, Boston MA

Sebastian Royo - sous chef, Brooklyn NY

Susan Heaton - culinary student, Whittier CA

Zach Womack – head line cook, Philadelphia PA


Offline TexasLady

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #1 on: March 05, 2013, 02:26:24 PM »
I cannot wait!!  :wohoo:
I am but a pebble on a rocky shore.

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2013, 12:27:36 PM »
The wait is over. Hell's Kitchen 11 is here. My episode 1 recap:

HK11, Ep. 1

20 contestants arrived at Los Angeles International Airport, presumably to go to Hell's Kitchen. However, they were transferred to Southwest Airlines to fly to Las Vegas. After a brief tour, the contestants went to Caesar's Palace, where they were to cook their signature dishes immediately in front of an audience of 2000.

Each contestant had 45 minutes to cook their signature dish, with Chef Ramsay determining which dishes were the best according to taste and appearance. The team with the most accepted dishes would win. The women won the challenge, with 5 dishes (from Nedra, Ja'Nel, Amanda, Jessica, and Jacqueline) chosen by Chef Ramsay to the men's 4 (from Ray, Jon, Michael, and Christian).

The women were treated to VIP status at Caesar's Palace, including a meet and greet with Celine Dion, followed by her show and a night on the town in Las Vegas. The men were forced to return to Los Angeles immediately on a school bus with no working air conditioner for an 8 hour trip through desert heat.

Gina was not feeling well at the start of the service and was examined by a medic as the episode ended as To Be Continued. Did she party too hearty in Las Vegas and need some compensating rest? I think that was the case.
« Last Edit: March 20, 2013, 12:39:23 PM by apskip »

Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2013, 01:30:37 PM »
HK11, Ep. 2

Gina relaxed before rejoining the service late, stating that “I just don’t want to be in that kitchen right now. Before the start of the service in Hell’s Kitchen, Chef Ramsay announced that he would guarantee that the service will be completed, leading the teams to try their best to complete it. As he was telling them this, Jean-Phillipe Suslovic returned to Hell's Kitchen by the front door, causing one red team member to humorously question where he had been for the previous three years.

It ended up being a typical first service filled with errors. Ramsay allowed some entrees to be sent to diners without the accompanying garnishes so that diners got some food. 8 men (Anthony for bad risotto, Barret for overcooked Wellingtons, Christian for an unknown reason, Dan for problems with risotto, Jeremy for burned spinach and inability to memorize the ticket, Jon for risotto, Michael for raw lamb and poor balance between too much bone for the meat and Ray for sticking his finger into a risotto) were thrown out of the service compared to 4 women (Gina for poorly cooked scallops, Susan for a bad garnish, Danielle for lack of ability to memorize tickets and slow performance and Jacqueline for taking time to drink water instead of completing her task) with numerous errors. Sebastian was thrown out for his flippant attitude (including calling Zach "Zachy Wacky"), but later attempted to return 3 times. Zach almost voluntarily departed, having vomited after leaving the kitchen briefly for relief, but rebounded successfully as the only blue team member remaining in action.

Chef Ramsay's guarantee was fulfilled, as both teams completed service. With six women remaining on the red team the red team won the service. Zach was singled out as "Best of Worst" for staying in the competition despite feeling ill.

The losing blue team had to decide who would leave Hell's Kitchen. Zach was given the honor of announcing that Jeremy for arrogance as well as bad cooking and Sebastian were nominated, both for behavior not consistent with working for the success of the blue team. Chef Ramsay decided that Sebastian, for his comical attitude during the service, must leave Hell's Kitchen.

Chef Ramsay's rationale for choosing Sebastian for elimination was that “it’s a kitchen, not a place for comedians” and "Sebastian tried to be funny, but it was his cooking that was the joke."

Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2013, 10:22:10 AM »
HK11, Ep. 3

Army soldiers came into the bedrooms of the Hell’s Kitchen dorm around 6am to awaken the chefs. They then demonstrated how to used teamwork to climb a wall. Each team then had the assistance of a roughly one foot platform to make the climb over the top of a wall one foot less difficult. Each chef had to take turns with his/her colleagues to go to a lobster trap and pull a lobster out a final score of Blue 37 Red 31 but this challenge was not over yet. Each pair had to pull or crack all the meat off of lobsters for 5 minutes. The women had 6 fewer lobsters to allow some mistakes with. At the end the score was Red 11 Blue 8 and the women had won again. Their reward was a sail on a 85 foot luxury yacht with gourmet sushi as lunch and a massage.

The men had a tough time with Fish Delivery Day, unloading and carrying halibut and branzino and then gutting, gleaning, tailing and portioning it. They were then forced to eat fish head soup, which was made less appealing with a disgusting color even though fish head soup is a delicacy in many Asian countries.

Prepping for the evening dinner service showed Susan cutting lamb racks to the proper shape but unable to minimize waste. Tableside service was assigned to Nedra and Anthony. Mary and Danielle manned the Red team Appetizer station and Christian and Zach did the Blue team Appetizer station.

Dinner service opened with Mary and Danielle unable to handle their assignment. They each botched risotto due to too much wine and not burning off the alcohol before sending it to the pass. Jeremy tried not very hard to catch a lobster from a display tank where customers could specify which one they wanted cooked for them. Christian served rubber scallops and he and Jeremy were sent to a table to eat them before they could return to the kitchen. Mary finally got risotto right. Jon undercooked a lamb rack.

At the end of 90 minutes no entrees had left the Blue kitchen so Ramsay in Donald Trump style shut it down. The Red team had the opportunity to keep going, but Susan and Ja’Nel on Meat suffered when Susan sent raw lamb to the pass. Ramsay shut down the Red kitchen.

The recapitulation of the evening’s cooking was brutal. Ramsay tried to blame it on lack of teamwork but to me it looked much more like weak individual cooking skills. No team won and each had to nominate 2 to be considered for elimination. The Blue team had no trouble identifying Christian and Jeremy as their nominees, for poor performance and lack of hustle. The Red team struggled to determine which 2 of 3 weak performers should be nominated. They ended up with Mary (who did recover from a bad start on risotto), Danielle (who will not last long in Hell’s Kitchen because she just doesn’t “get it”).

Ramsay sent Jeremy and Mary back to their teams. He eliminated Christian due to his lack of hustle and fire.


Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2013, 10:14:55 PM »
HK11, Ep. 4

This episode started with a brief private warning from Ramsay to Jeremy to shape up or he would be shipped out.

Next was a 3K/8K run with the End Play Foundation, with the runners choosing their distance.  3 Olympic athletes, Maurice Green, Natalie Coughlin and Daniel Leyva, were runners. Mary was selected to run for the Red team and Dan for the
Blue team.  She was super-slow and he was quick, which got him back to the kitchen to assist his teammates in the cooking that had been underway since the start of the race in the important part of the challenge. The menu was:
Berry Smoothies
Salad
Grilled Flank Steak or Pan-Seared Salmon or Grilled Edamame Burgers
Sweet Potato Fries

Zach cooked a whole tray of salmon ahead, tried to hide it, was caught by Ramsay, had to refire salmon to order and was caught again by Ramsay trying to reheat the original salmon. She followed up by sending raw salmon to the pass.  The Red team caught up and won due to the Blue team salmon fiasco preventing their last table from being served. Ramsay then rubbed it in by ordering the Red team to take over the Blue team kitchen to finish the challenge. Red stated that the Red team had won due to their edge on teamwork.

The reward for the women was a private jet flight to the California wine country in Temecula and Monte de Oro Winery for its sample wines and to stomp its grapes.  The men got to clean up the runner’s route, especially scrubbing arrows off the concrete.

Michael stepped up in the prep to provide leadership. Dan bitterly resented this and refused to communicate and cooperate. Dan was botching several orders of sliced rack of lamb and forcing Michael to redo its garnish many times. Ramsay had to intervene to get Dan and Michael to communicate to overcome Dan’s problems with raw lamb and timing vs. the garnish.

There was a tableside Greek salad served by Cyndi for the Red team and Jeremy for the Blue team. Ray had the Appetizer station and his first risotto was burned and returned by a VIP NBA star. Ray’s second risotto was fine. Susan sent excellent scallops out. Jessica’s risotto was a portion for 3 to 5 servings when Ramsay had asked for only one. Danielle and Jacqueline burned multiple Beef Wellingtons.

The men won, the women lost and they had to nominate 2. The nominated Danielle and Jessica, but Ramsay added Jacqueline to the potential chopping block.  Jessica’s shortcoming cited by her teammates (a vague “not enough leadership”) was not recognized by Ramsay. He sent her back into the line. Jacqueline also escaped elimination but Danielle got it. Ramsay called it his “3 times and you’re out” rule, which I cannot remember hearing in 10 prior seasons of Hell’s Kitchen. Ramsay’s summary was that Danielle acted like a deer caught in the headlights, but ended up as dead meat.

Ramsay’s final admonition to the remaining chefs was “I am going to turn up the heat to separate the chefs from the cooks.” I expect him to do just that. It isn’t named Hell’s Kitchen for no reason.   

Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #6 on: April 10, 2013, 02:14:58 PM »
HK11, Ep. 5

This episode started with a Palate Challenge. Ramsay had prepared 5 dishes containing a primary protein, but masked with sauces and breading, etc. Each team had 4 pairs competing sequentially to identify from a table of 50 proteins which was in each dish. The men needed 10 minutes 33 seconds to finish. The women did it in 6 minutes 37 seconds.

The reward was to get driven in 3 convertibles to the Malibu mansion owned by champion surfer Lance Hamilton and his wife pro volleyball star Gabrielle Reese. Hamilton gave the women how-to-get-up-on-a-surfboard lessons.

The punishment for the men was to unload sacks of wheat, mill it in a mortar/ pestle operation, grind it into flour, mix it into a dough mix, let the dough rise overnight and then bake it into loaves. During this prep, Jeremy needed medic and hospital attention although he returned with a non-credible excuse.  Both teams were awakened at 637am for their next task, serving breakfast to emergency room doctors and nurses and EMTs. Ramsay stated this breakfast would substitute for a dinner service and that there would be an elimination based on performance. First team to finish won.

The sample menu was:
Croissant Breakfast Sandwich
Eggs Benedict
Blueberry and Banana Pancakes
Traditional Omelet
Smoked Sausage and Scrambled Eggs

This looks like an easy menu to me. Care must be taken in how things are cooked, but these are not exotic dishes. Ray had trouble keeping all his egg dish in the pan and Cyndi had trouble getting hers out of the dish. Jeremy started off badly by trying to take a sample scrambled eggs dish and sending it to the pass. Ramsay caught that and berated him for attempting to serve customers food cooked about one hour earlier. J’Anel was praised for her scrambled eggs. Nedra was trying to use a small spatula insufficient to carefully get the eggs out. Amanda bailed Nedra out by showing her that using a larger spatula makes the job easy. Ray overused pepper in his eggs, but his second try was delicious according to Ramsay. Jacqueline could not properly flip a pancake, so the women were close to finishing but unable to fill several final orders for pancakes. Nedra did help her out.

The blue team gutted it out and finished before the entire Red team could finish their one last pancake order. The women were required to nominate the two whose “absence would make their team stronger.”  Note that this was not a directive to choose the weakest performers from only that breakfast service. The women followed that advice and nominated Jacqueline and Mary. Jacqueline had been a consistently weak performer and Mary had performed well on this task but not well previously. Some wanted to nominate Nedra, who had performed poorly in this breakfast service but had generally been a strong performer earlier.

Ramsay sent Jacqueline and Mary back in line and stated that “there is one person who is in way over their head.” The implication is that it will be Nedra, but I doubt that. I think it is now Jeremy’s time to depart even though his team won.

Offline TexasLady

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #7 on: April 12, 2013, 05:25:12 PM »
Thanks for the recaps apskip!  :hrt:  No one really stands out this year. At least not yet.

Should I predict what we will see happen next week? I'll put it in a spoiler. :)

Show content
The two men and two women will just exchange jackets, to change teams, no one sent home.
I am but a pebble on a rocky shore.

Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #8 on: April 15, 2013, 12:17:28 PM »
A very hard-to-follow schedule has been announced for HK11 telecasts in May. After the regular time slot of 8pm Tuesday nights for April 16, April 23, April 30 and May 7, HK11 will shift to Monday May 13 for a 2 hour telecast and then shift to Thursdays for May 22 and beyond. Go figure.

Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2013, 07:44:22 AM »
HK11, Ep. 6
The start of this episode was Ramsay identifying the “one person in way over their head.” It was (no surprise to me) Jeremy, eliminated on the spot for making a careless error by submitting a sample dish prepared one hour earlier as if it were his own production. Ramsay told the men that their reward for winning was that he got rid of the dead weight of Jeremy for them, which was indeed a gift. Jeremy left stating that he was still a great chef, but I saw no indication of that whatsoever in HK11.

Amanda had nominated Nedra, so Nedra was full of vindictiveness toward her. Mary thought it was possible she was pregnant, but a home test kit showed otherwise. Michael and Dan were at each other’s figurative throats.

Ramsay wanted to highlight the importance of wait staff, so he appointed Jessica and Barret to serve as waiters. Their initial efforts to write a ticket legibly were met with scorn and derision. Ray had rubbery scallops, then good scallops. Amanda and Susan got refusal to accept their scallops or risotto at the pass and had to do them over. Ray and Dan fought over cooking what should have been halibut but was another fish. Ray basically was blocking Dan from “helping” him. Susan got her risotto right. Ramsay had noted that Jessica had been waiting for 30 minutes for any production from the Red kitchen.  There was a similar wait time of 17 minutes from the Blue kitchen. Ray had dry, overcooked halibut. Nedra and Mary had pork, but it came out undercooked and raw multiple times. Ray had halibut raw for the third time. Ramsay had had enough and booted the entire Blue kitchen. One more raw pork from Nedra and Mary caused him to also shut the Red kitchen, so neither team won and both lost.

In the recapitulation, Ramsay asked both teams to nominate the 2 individuals they wanted to get rid of. This was Mary and Nedra from Red and Ray and Dan from Blue. He asked each of them to justify their continuation in Hell’s Kitchen. He then called all four of them forward to give up their jackets.

With another show there would probably be closure here, but not in Hell’s Kitchen. The ToBeContinued message was prominently displayed. How many ToBeContinued endings are we going to see? Wasn’t one more than enough?


Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #10 on: April 17, 2013, 07:45:15 AM »
It looks like TexasLady's prediction has been set up very nicely.

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2013, 10:06:02 AM »
HK11, Ep. 7

The resolution of the ending of the prior episode was that Mary, Nedra, Ray and Dan were all put on probation, lost their jackets and had one episode to win them back. The Challenge started with 6 Chinese dishes which had to be cooked from 5 ingredients each. Ingredient names were inside very large fortune cookies and carried to a board with chopsticks. Those 6 dishes were Chow Mein, Spring Roll, Dumplings, Soup, Fried Rice and Stir Fry. The “placers” on the board were Ja’nel and Jacqueline for Red and Ray and Dan for Blue. One individual from each team then had 40 minutes to cook one of the dishes.  Anthony was shown having visible problems with his Chow Mein. The very special judge for this challenge was Martin Yan from “Yan Can Cook.”  He was a bit hammy but entertaining. You got the idea that he would follow Ramsay’s Rules in assuring that the score would be tied going into the last item.

Those results were:
Fried Rice –     Dan 0 (despite his claim to fame as from living there) Jacqueline 1 
Stir Fry –         Jon 1 Jessica 0
Spring Roll –   Barret 1 Nedra 0
Dumplings –   Ray 0 Cyndi 1
Soup -            Michael 1 Ja’nel 1
Chow Mein –  Anthony 1 Susan 0

That made the final score Blue 4, Red 3. Even though both Ray and Dan had failed to score points for their team, they were given their jackets back by Ramsay. The men went off to the surprise reward of playing paintball. The punishment for the Red team was to prepare for both kitchens pot stickers and dumplings and eat a lunch of balut eggs, which disgusted several of them with the beaks and feet visible when the egg is opened.

Ramsay announced that there would be VIPs at chef tables in each kitchen. Ja’nel and Ray were assigned to do tableside service of dim sum. Ray was a bit slow in doing his. Nedra cooked some delicious risotto at the beginning of dinner service and earned her jacket back. Soon Mary did the same. Anthony got kudos for getting Blue appetizers out swiftly. Barret sent raw shrimp to the pass for an order for their VIP table. Susan had raw lamb and then dropped a replacement one on the floor. Dan’s lamb was OK, which Dan interpreted as meaning he was anointed by God. Dan also sent up good Wellingtons. Barret had the last ticket with 2 halibut but ran into problems with it by cooking it with the parchment still on and having to redo it. That kept a table of 6 elderly ladies waiting.

Ramsay stated that both teams lost again. They were to nominate the 2 individuals they most wanted to get rid of. It was no surprise when the Red team nominated Jessica and Susan. It was also no surprise (except to Dan, who believed his own press clippings) when Blue again nominated Ray and Dan. Jessica was eliminated.

The women are consistently coming up with “I am a fighter. I will get better! I need to stay in Hell’s Kitchen” rhetoric, but that is not matched by their performance in the kitchen. I hear it as the whining of losers.   


Offline TexasLady

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #12 on: April 22, 2013, 09:59:22 AM »
It sure seems like a weak bunch this year.  :hellkitchen

I still see no standouts!
I am but a pebble on a rocky shore.

Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #13 on: April 22, 2013, 04:49:31 PM »
I agree that nobody has really emerged as the inside track candidate. The closest is Michael at this point. Ramsay's blindfold taste testing will be very important in his identifying who the real talent is.

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #14 on: April 23, 2013, 06:49:41 PM »
I agree that nobody has really emerged as the inside track candidate. The closest is Michael at this point. Ramsay's blindfold taste testing will be very important in his identifying who the real talent is.

Good point apskip.
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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #15 on: April 25, 2013, 03:49:12 PM »
HK11, Ep. 8

The Challenge was to herd barnyard animals (pigs, goats, lambs, chickens, turkeys, ducks) into pens marked with a starch ingredient which would be cooked with that protein. The teams had 10 minutes to do the herding and the men finished long before the women, but the women did get all the proteins required. The next phase was to cook the specified combination in 40 minutes and have each teams pick their 5 best dishes for presentation. Michael’s goat dish was chosen over Dan’s and Dan felt slighted.  Chef/Owner John Shook of Animal came to be the Guest Judge. Here were the selected dishes paired by protein:

Turkey
Nedra – turkey, sweet potatoes, sweet potato strings                                               1
Ray – 2 types turkey meatballs and spaghetti                                                            0

Duck
Susan – duck breasts and citrus couscous                                                                   1     
Anthony – seared duck                                                                                                 0 

Pork
Amanda – pork, couscous, spinach                                                                             0
Barret—pan-seared pork, asparagus                                                                           1       

Lamb
Mary – lamb ragout                                                                                                        0
Zach – lamb, potatoes                                                                                                   1

Goat
Ja’nel – goat/wild mushroom ragout                                                                           1
Michael – goat ribs with couscous, scallions                                                                0     

Chef Shook’s response after tasting Michael’s ribs, “This is something I would feed my dog.” He also rated Ja’nel’s the best of all the dishes he rated. So the women won 3 points to 2 and their reward was a VIP visit to the Aquarium of the Pacific, where they got to pet penguins and snorkel with dolphins. Ramsay asked for Dan to bring up his goat ribs dish, which John Shook and Ramsay both stated was much better than Michael’s. They did not say it was good enough to win over Ja’nel’s and I doubt if that was true. The men had to clean, cook and prepare lunch for all the barnyard animals and to set up a petting zoo for Family Night.

Family Night involved a special children’s menu of margherita pizza, cheeseburger with French fries and panko-crusted chicken fingers Child meals were to be served with parent appetizers. Chef Ramsay’s family was there and Chef James’ pregnant wife was too. Ramsay wanted them treated by the Blue team as VIPs.

Dan started by burning the bottom of a pizza. Jacqueline screwed up with rubbery scallops. The Blue team bounced back from a rough start. When the order for Ramsay’s wife’s table came in, Ray sent a cold cheeseburger to the pass. Mary on meat and Jacqueline on fish were critical to the success of the Red team. Mary really excelled, particularly with Wellingtons, and Nedra stated that “Mary is on the money tonight.” Barret had raw lamb and had to refire it before it was OK. In general, his meat dishes were cooked inconsistently. There was an order for Chef James’ wife and Barret screwed up with raw chicken. The women finished and were sent to help the men complete the dinner service.

As has become the norm recently, Ramsay requested the Blue team to nominate 2 chefs they wanted to get rid of.  The nominees were Barret for his poor meat performance and Dan for his attitude problems. Ramsay selected Dan for elimination and gain I think he did the remaining blue team members a favor. “My message to the Blue Team is to shove it up your ass" were Dan's parting comment.

Ramsay pointedly stated that the Blue team had won one of 6 challenges and 1 of 6 dinner services. He urged them to clean up their act.

Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #16 on: April 25, 2013, 03:53:45 PM »
As HK11 moves forward, I am seeing other talent besides Michael (who has managerial skills but not necessarily outstanding chef talent). Zach has not been consistent but he has usually been strong. The strongest contender from the Red team has clearly been Ja'nel.

How well all do on blind taste tests will say a lot about who makes it to the final 3, but it could be these 3. 

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #17 on: May 01, 2013, 07:31:06 PM »
HK11, Ep. 9

Ramsay announced that it is Steak night in Hell’s Kitchen. Nedra reminded the Red team that it would be a good time to eat humble pie and not gloat over their prior dinner service victory. The Challenge is a cookoff using the various major cuts of beef. The chefs have 40 minutes to cook and develop an appropriate sauce or rub from a wide variety of ingredients. Here were their dishes paired up cut by cut:

Porterhouse
Cyndi                                            0
Jon                                                1

Filet
Nedra/Susan                                 1
Zach                                              1

NY Strip
Amanda                                         0
Michael                                          0

Ribcap
Jacqueline                                     1
Anthony                                        1

Hangar Steak
Ja’nel                                             1
Barret                                            0

RibEye
Mary                                               1
Ray                                                 0   
       
The women won the challenge 4 to 3. The mean were beating up on Ray because he went last, but that was unfair because Barret and Michael also were beaten in the head-to-head competitions with Ja’Nel (very tough to beat) and Amanda (not tough to beat).

The reward for the women was a trip to the Wilshire Hotel top level pool with a 360 degree view, with manicure and pedicure pampering. The men had to portion an entire side of beef, making the appropriate cuts to get the various types of beef dishes.

Steak Night opened with a menu featuring special appetizers of crab cakes, crab cocktail and Slider Trio and special entrees of NY Strip, RibEye and Filet. Ramsay announced that there would be tableside service of prime rib and that Susan and Zach would handle that.

Barret started dinner service off on the wrong foot by firing crabcakes before any had been ordered. He should have known how Ramsay feels about that, as it made him look like a rookie who didn’t know what he was doing. Crabcakes and crab cocktails went out quickly for the Blue team. Mary was having problems with sliders because she did not hear the first order for them, then suffered the ignominy of one of her hairs sent out to a diner. Barret was having trouble with the garnish station. He sent up crabcakes without the accompanying salad.  The Blue team finished appetizers and was well into entrees before the Red team finished their appetizers. Ray screwed up with a rare NY strip steak and was sent off with a giants serving underlay to eat all of the wasted garnishes and other entrees wasted for that table. When he returned he and Michael both cooked NY strip steaks that got passing grades. Amanda sent a raw filet to the pass. When she did it a second time she, Jacqueline, Nedra and Mary all tried to get it done, but all 4
were sent upstairs for good. That left Ja’Nel, Cyndi and Susan brought in from tableside (replaced by Jean-Philippe) to finish for the Read team. However, the Blue team had long since finished their service and won it.

The usual “nominate 2” was offered to the women. They chose Amanda and Jacqueline. Ramsay decided to eliminate Jacqueline, although what redeeming value he found in Amanda is not obvious. Ramsay stated that Jacqueline talked a good game but did not deliver.
         

Offline apskip

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #18 on: May 01, 2013, 07:32:55 PM »
Ja'Nel continues to be the only woman to impress me. Michael is fading for the men, leaving Zach as the most competent.

Jacqueline's days are numbered, as are Barret's.

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #19 on: May 08, 2013, 08:46:58 AM »
HK11, Ep. 10

The focal point of this episode was a Quinceaneara, a special 15th birthday party for Latino teens and their families. The honoree was Brianna, whose mother and party planner accompanied her to Hell’s Kitchen.

The challenge was the creation and cooking in 45 minutes of a 5 course tasting menu including one cold appetizer, one hot appetizer, one chicken entrée and one beef entrée. The points were determined by Briana, her mother and the party planner tasting and awarding them to the Blue team or the Red team. Here is what happened:

Jon-                                   1
Ja’nel -                              0

Barret -                             0
Cyndi -                              1   

Nedra – grilled shrimp      0
Ray – homemade ravioli   1

Anthony - chicken             0
Mary - chicken                  1

Michael - steak                 0
Amanda - steak                1

The women won their 8th out of 9 challenges and got a trip to Knott’s Berry Farm. The men had to labor under the strict control freak of the party planner, who is always played by actors to be the villains. They had to clear tables, cut ribbons and cut tulle fabric for dolls’ dresses and it had to be perfect.

In the dinner service, Amanda started poorly in cooking non-raw tuna appetizers for half the head table while Jon and Anthony handled their half with ease. Ramsay wanted all appetizers to be completed before the traditional Quinceneara waltz, but Red could not finish two appetizers in time. For entrees, Zach on Garnish got himself in trouble by not cooking sufficient potatoes and this happened again later.  Barret had trouble with linguine and later when nasty sinews ruined a burned kebab, but he fixed them on the next try. Nedra had dry chicken. Cyndi had raw steak.

The Blue team finished well ahead of Red, but Ramsay did not award them a win. The Red team clearly lost and both teams had to nominate the usual 2 chefs to consider for elimination. Blue decided on Zach and Barret. Red went with the obvious Amanda and chose Cyndi over Nedra. As always, it’s a charade for character building, as only Ramsay makes the decisions in Hell’s Kitchen. He chose Amanda for elimination, which was totally appropriate. Then, he announced that he was not through and ToBeContinued flashed on my TV screen. If you look ahead one week for the number of chefs remaining, you have to conclude that there will be a second elimination to start that episode. It will probably be Barret or it could be Nedra in a surprise move, but I doubt that it will be Zach or Cyndi because their transgressions were not serious enough.


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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #20 on: May 14, 2013, 01:01:55 PM »
HK11, Ep. 11

The ToBeContinued was resolved with Barret being eliminated. That was no loss to the Blue team. The challenge used as a Guest Judge Jennifer Garcia, senior writer for People magazine, who is doing an article on the highest scoring chef on the winning team. Teams sent one chef into a booth with high-velocity air blown through it and lots of yellow strips with protein and white strips with sides on them. Their mission was to get as many strips as possible for their teammates to select from in creating one entrée each. They then had 45 minutes to cook a visually stunning meal. Ramsay and Garcia each could award up to 50 points for a dish. 3 dishes from each team were selected by the team to be scored.  Michael’s quail and Ray’s lobster did not make the cut for the Blue team while Nedra’s and Susan’s dishes did not for the Red team. The results were:

Cyndi - fennel-crusted sea bass with honey sherry vinaigrette 90
Ja’Nel - basil-marinated grilled prawns, finished with black garlic vinaigrette 89
Mary - grilled flank steak, lightly dusted with wasabi and lemongrass 90
Total Red 269

Jon - duck confit and pan-seared breast 92
Zach - steak with roasted red pepper coulis with garlic and shallots 83
Anthony - pan-seared halibut, crusted with coriander and pink peppercorn 82
Total Blue 257

So Red won its 8th of 9 challenges. Despite the fact that Anthony had the highest score, the honor of the article was going to a tie-breaker decided by Jennifer Garcia.  Mary was selected.

The Red team went off for a photo shoot with Star Watch magazine. The Blue team was left to clean both dorms until Jon and Zach were sent off on tricycles to bring and serve champagne to the Red team. The Red team also won Vitamix blenders.

After the return of all, Ramsay had a surprise announcement, that there would be a dinner honoring returning U.S. army veterans and their significant others. The Red team and the blue team were to coordinate this dinner service so that each of 5 courses went out together (you know that’s not going to happen because the chefs are just not that skilled).  Here were the courses:

Butter Poached Spot Prawns
Ja’Nel - OK
Jon - OK

Lobster Linguine (Zach had half portions of pasta, with one returned
Nedra - used cold water, requiring a lot more time to cook the linguine
Ray – did not trust his teammates to plate properly so he tried to do it all himself

Lobster, Red Sauce and Mushroom Risotto (Zach had cold lobster)
Mary
Michael

Loup de Mer
Cyndi - OK
Anthony - OK

New York Strip Steak
Susan - Susan was late finishing this dish
Zach – not seasoned properly and had to be redone

Ramsay stated that both teams lost and had to nominate one weakest member. The Red team considered Susan and Nedra, but nominated Nedra. The Blue team considered Zach and Ray, but nominated Ray. Ramsay insisted that Zach join the line. Ray was Ramsay’s choice to go because “Ray's age wasn't the issue. It was his cooking. And I wasn't getting any younger waiting for him to improve.”


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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #21 on: May 14, 2013, 02:20:35 PM »
HK11, Ep. 12

Ramsay announced that the teams would create their own menus of 4 appetizers, 4 entrees and 2 desserts. They had 5.5 hours to create those dishes to a state acceptable to Ramsay. The Blue team did fine with this set of dishes:
Appetizers – calamari, “fire and ice” (halibut and ?)
Beef Filet with butter sauce
Pork
Scallops

The Red team had difficulty with their initial dishes and had to fix them to Ramsay’s satisfaction in just 20 minutes before Hell’s Kitchen opened, but they succeeded. Their dishes were:
Appetizers – shrimp and chicken gumbo, Grilled Peaches and Salad
Branzini (European sea bass)
Salmon
Scallops

Dinner service started with each diner choosing from either the Red menu or the blue menu. Susan on Garnish had trouble with pan-grilled potatoes. Michael had raw halibut and on redoing it he did not start over with one and it became dry.  He was sent to the bar for a 5 minute timeout as a result. Zach had perfect pork, but later had raw in the center pork. Zach had the responsibility for the sauce that accompanied his filets, but failed to check whether it was heated (Michael had failed to do that on one).

The Red team finished first and won. The Blue team never recovered from mistakes by Zach and Michael. Red was sent off with a charge to select one member to move to lead the Blue team. All 5 wanted to go, so they drew lots and Cyndi was chosen.

Ramsay demanded that the Blue team select their one weakest member. They tried but were evenly split between Michel and Zach. Ramsay broke the tie by eliminating Michael. He asked the Red team who they nominated, but really did not give them the opportunity to tell him. This episode ended with another ToBeContinued. These are unnecessary and getting tiresome. Just finish the episode already, Ramsay!

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2013, 09:56:16 PM »
My favorite this season and by far the most effective chef has been Ja'Nel. However, previews for next week's episode create the impression that she will be in deep trouble.

I think Zach it now totally dead weight. He has gone off the deep end on ego without any reason for doing so and it will catch up to him soon.

I have been unimpressed by Cyndi but she will almost certainly last beyond when Zach departs.

I have no idea how the dilemma of which Red team chef will go to the Blue team will be resolved. I think one possible resolution is to forget the idea entirely and just keep the teams as they are now. Jon and Anthony are pretty strong chefs and can carry a team even with Zach weighing it down.

Offline TexasLady

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #23 on: May 15, 2013, 10:32:46 AM »
Zach isn't going to last much longer, at least I don't see it happening. I think the Red Team will begin to be whittled down now and I don't know who will go to the Blue Team if anyone.

Ja'Nel impresses me too. I've been snookered before by the previews so maybe she's not the one in trouble. (HEH!)
I am but a pebble on a rocky shore.

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Re: Hell's Kitchen 11
« Reply #24 on: May 24, 2013, 04:55:43 PM »
HK11, Ep. 13

This episode opened with Ramsay giving the Red Team 2 minutes to decide who would go to the Blue team. With it being obvious that Zach would be retained that scared away all but Nedra, who was sent to Blue  She was her usual loud and overbearing self but none of other remaining Blue team members were going to go out of their way for her.

The Challenge was International Cuisine and Dana Bowen, Executive Editor of “Every Day at Rachael Ray” magazine was the Guest Judge. This was head-to-head competition between 4 sets one red and one Blue team members. A wheel was spun to determine which cuisine for each pair and each one had select proteins and 5 special ingredients that they must use in 45 minutes cooking time.

Here are those countries, non-protein ingredients, the pairings, the completed dishes and the scores:

INDIA – chickpeas, basmati rice and lentils
Mary- 0 lamb, but used no rice
Jon- 1tandoori chicken

JAPAN - soy sauce, bok choy and daikon radish
Susan- 1 miso dachi
Zach- 0 pan-seared chicken
including the non-Japanese protein chicken

GREECE – Kalamata olives, yogurt and grape leaves
Cyndi- 1 stuffed chicken roulade
Anthony- 0 seared lamb 

THAI – lemongrass, coconut milk and jasmine rice
Ja’Nel- 1 calamari
Nedra- 0 steamed halibut

You might think that Zach was joking when he stated “Japanese food is like Chinese food, and the only reason I know that is because my one Korean friend told me so,” but he wasn’t. He really meant it and that spelled doom for him.

The Red team won 3-1. Their reward was $500 each for a shopping spree, lunch in a private room at Mr. Chow’s and a set of All-Clad cookware each. The punishment was unloading wine cases, cleaning all stemware, slicing 40 pounds each of limes and lemons and prepping both kitchens. Nedra was surly and defiant and unhelpful.

It was time for dinner service and Nedra’s station was not ready to go. She blamed her Blue team colleagues for this, but it was her own incompetence. Blue could not accomplish anything on appetizers with Nedra primarily responsible for starting off with scallops too salted.  Jon’s undercooked scallops were also a factor. The entire Blue team had made a mess, demonstrated disarray and demonstrated disorganization. Ramsay shut the Blue kitchen.

Susan made 4 portions of risotto when 2 were requested. Ja’Nel asked Susan to give her time to finish cooking the scallops, which Susan ignored; Ja’Nel then made a mistake by cooking scallops only on one side. Susan recovered and Ja’Nel recovered and Red finished appetizers and started entrees. A complex order with lots of different dishes was destroyed when Ja’Nel brought up raw halibut to the pass for their one and only VIP guest, so Ramsay used that excuse to go ballistic and close down the Red kitchen. The usual “nominate your weakest team member for elimination” was done in addition to the judgment that “tonight’s dinner service was the worst ever in the history of Hell’s Kitchen.”

There was no debate on the Blue team: their choice was Nedra, who totally deserved it. She had totally alienated her new colleagues and had no support for staying. The debate on the Red team was between Ja’Nel’s poor performance that night vs. Susan being significantly less skilled. It would be Nedra vs. Susan. That was no contest and Nedra was eliminated by Ramsay. Ramsay used this colorful metaphor to explain her demise: “Nedra wore a red jacket and a blue jacket, but after tonight's performance, I knew that she wouldn't be wearing a black jacket.”


 

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