MasterChef: Strange Food, Lidia Bastianich Gives a Cooking Lesson, and Krissi Shows Her True Colors

As we wind through the MasterChef season, we get to see more of our feisty home cooks all wanting that title, trophy, and cash. And in the process we learn a lot about them from their cooking and interaction with their fellow competitors. Once again I am not doing a recap as there are already plenty out there. Rather I am commenting on various things good and bad I liked about this two-parter.

1)What Is That!?
Okay the Culinary Trio got sneaky this week. The mystery box contained foods from all over the world. Some were easy to discern, like that bit of elk steak that was thrown in. Or the Japanese sweet potato. Other things looked weird, like the Chinese black moss that looked like hair but needs water to hydrate into noodles? Baby eels were tossed in along with a can of weird livers that Joe found disgusting. What I liked about this challenge is that they gave no instructions on what to do. The chefs had to figure it out on their own. In the end Eddie won for his elk steak. Jordan sneered at that when Eddie brought it up but Eddie got the win.

2)Lidia Bastianich Drops By For A Cooking Lesson
Joe’s mom was last seen in season 2 and now drops by to demonstrate how to cook a complicated pasta with a meat filling (with Joe to assist her). Alas for Lynn and James, Eddie sends them away as part of his reward to decide who gets to watch the demonstration. When they return, they have to make the pasta without seeing how it was done. Very wicked indeed! Neither of them does well in the challenge. James gets by with a pasta that is good but nothing spectacular. Lynn puts the meat through the food processor (makes it pasty) while everyone else used a meat grinder. Howard and Lynn have the worst dishes but Howard takes the walk when he is asked to do the right thing and leave. Lidia reminded Howard and everyone there that when you try play around with classic dishes, you have to stay faithful to its roots. Putting maple syrup like Jonny did was not wise (and he was in the bottom as well). Sometimes chefs get over creative and think they have to toss everything in to prove themselves but only make it worse. And Howard was a good example of that.

3) Visiting Glee
Okay you can guess what happened here. Someone decided to cross-promote Glee with MasterChef. Amazingly it worked well because they used Jane Lynch who did an incredible job of sorting out the teams. Blue Team was headed up by Krissi and Red by Jessi. The menu was set as each team had to prepare fried chicken (with fries and coleslaw), grilled salmon  (with asperagus and scalloped potatoes), and vegetarian lasagna (with mixed salad). Team Blue seemed to be functioning well while Team Red seemed chaotic. Both teams were unprepared though for the staggering demand for fried chicken, which at some points were unavailable. Red Team had a serious issue when Jessie cut herself and thus was out for a while while Gordon and the medic helped her. But Blue Team had a serious issue when raw chicken was discovered. Eventually it got sorted out but it royally angered Krissi. It would mean doom for Bime later.

Now the results were delivered by Jane Lynch accompanied by a drummer and cheerleaders with twirlers. Another good choice. Red Team wins it handily totally surprising Krissi. Her anger deepened at that point.

4) Krissi Lets It All Out
Team Blue is assembled for the pressure test. Gordon reveals some astonishing information. Bime’s chicken won hands down over the Red Team; it was not the reason they lost. What handed them the loss was Jordan’s grilled salmon. Only 2 people liked it! But that does not spare Bime. Krissi is given the chance to decide who gets saved and who faces the pressure test. She lets Jonny and Natasha get spared but not Bethy, Beth, Bime or Jordan. Now comes the decision she will be long remembered for. She totally trashed Jordan when he, as captain, bailed out and took the exemption. So she has the chance to show him up. Except she decided to get in the lifeboat and sail away. She tried claiming it was for her son but the hypocrisy was apparent to everyone who remembered her rant. She heads up to the balcony to gloat over those in the pressure test.

What made it worse was her joy in watching Bime fail. Bime mistakenly added cream of tartar thinking it was cornstarch. Krissi was enjoying every moment of it and crowing to the camera about how happy she was in seeing Bime going down in flames. Krissi, who is brash and loud by any standard, showed us a side that probably turned off most who watched. And likely her fellow contestants who could not fail to hear what she was saying and laughing about.

The hardest part was watching the pies being judged. Jordan came out fine no one else aced it. Watching what happened to Bime was not easy. Gordon sliced into the pie only to find there was no set curd. It was all wet! Up on the balcony, Krissi was smiling and eating it all up. Natasha turned away not wanting to look and saying so, but Krissi was enjoying the show. Bime’s pie was totally reviled by Gordon and it sent him home. Krissi’s hypocrisy and gloating over Bime’s demise no doubt turned off a lot of people. And it showed that she is an odious, contemptible human being. In a short word, bully. Fox is quite pleased with this. We all want to see Krissi get smacked down now by the judges when her food is bad.  Likewise we cannot wait to see how her fellow contestants try to take her down. So many possibilities in a kitchen. And good ratings for MasterChef as we tune in. A clip seems to show Joe getting in her face about something she said.

And next week season 3 winner Christine shows up and yes, they are going to cook blind!