On this episode, one duck... four different
possibilities as the chefs put their ethnic variances on display. But will the
sour taste lead to a sweet victory?
sous chef & private chef
New York City
executive chef, Arte Cafe
personal chef & instructor
orig. Naples, Italy
executive sous chef, Naples 45 New York
Three rounds, each one has
its own box of mysterious ingredients. Be it a little or a lot, each one must be
used. After each course, the plate will be judged on creativity, presentation,
and taste. The lowest rung on the pole each round gets chopped. These are timed
rounds; strategy is involved. The last chef standing wins $10,000 cash money.
- NYC bistro baron Marc Murphy
- Star executive chef Alex Guarnaschelli
- Rock'n'roll trendsetter Chris Santos
Round 1: APPETIZER (20 minutes). First up
in the boxes... duck breast... polenta... and sharon fruit.
... or persimmon. Time starts NOW!
Roshni: Curry Duck Breast
Giuliano: Seared Duck Breast with Spiced Polenta
Shaya: Cardamom Polenta with Seared Duck Breast
Pasquale: Seared Duck Breast with Cannellini Bean Puree
Roshni doesn't want to make a pure Indian dish,
because she know she's dealing with Italian cornmeal. Giuliano wants to give
sharon fruit a nice bacon flavor, while Pasquale is concentrated on polenta.
Shaya ends up cutting himself. Lots of sympathy, but the competition continues.
The big obstacle seems to be cooking the duck. Which is hard to do in just 20
minutes. Because it's duck. And it doesn't render quickly. Shaya goes for the
gambit of cooking the sharon fruit in duck fat. Roshni's duck... raw with only
two minutes to go. Guiliano is going for a sauce to contrast his duck at the
same time. We may be having duck sushi today.
And.. TIME. What's on the plates... is what's on
the menu. And for Giuliano.. it's a sauceless duck. That could be the
Roshni: Curry Duck Breast with Ginger Polenta
Salad. The style comes through in the salad, but the succulence doesn't come
through in the duck. The fat layer is soft and the duck is dry. She has to
remember not to lose herself or the ingredient.
Giuliano's duck is perfect. He was very
methodical. The sharon fruit and bacon, though, was a disaster. It sounds like
the sauce would've tied the dish together.
Shaya treats the sharon fruit very well. The
duck, though, is overcooked. Shaya likes a little dark duck. The polenta was
greasy and lacking panache.
Pasquale's stack is nice and warm. He's not happy
about duck. The judges are happy, but it needs texture.
So the Appetizer Round amounts to one perfect
duck. There's a depth of flavor, but not a depth of texture. Which chef is going
to fall by the wayside because of it? The first person to be chopped... is...
SHAYA. The appetizer wasn't really that appetizing.
Round 1: ENTREE (30 minutes). Another
round, another basket. This time, it's rainbow trout, baby turnips, tamarind
concentrate, and Serrano ham.
Your half-hour starts... right now!
Roshni: Poached Trout with Tamarind Rice Pilaf
Giuliano: Pan-Roasted Trout with Sauteed Turnips... and Ham Fritters
Pasquale: Baked Trout stuffed with Serrano Ham
The only thing Roshni doesn't get is... the ham.
She's using rice. Giuliano is using pizza dough. Pasquale is using... herbs.
Roshni's trying to make this work with the ham being used as a salt element.
Pasquale is scared of the tamarind. With five minutes, Pasquale starts plating.
Roshni follows with two minutes. Giuliano may give us a down-to-the-wire finish,
with only one minute left for him to plate. He may not get around to plating his
And... TIME. And one person is going to get a
fritter and one person's going to get a dirty plate.
Giuliano's fritter... goes to Alex. It was an
ambitious, but way too time consuming. The fritter ends up to be great. The
glazed fritter is great as well, but the tragedy is time management.
Pasquale's salad is a palate cleanser. The fish
is a little clunky. It's a rich dish. Perhaps too rich.
And the dirty plate on Roshni's dish.. goes to
Alex. She's history. The dish itself is a little overbearing.
Giuliano doesn't use his time efficiently,
Pasquale was clean, and Roshni, though creative, was not as clean. The judges
seem to be at an impasse. So who's going to be left without a plate to stand on?
The next person to be chopped is... PASQUALE. It was a difficult decision, but
his dish missed in more than one way, missing some starch to absorb all that
Round 1: DESSERT (30 minutes). Standing
between you and ten large is... sliced almonds, Okinawan sweet potatoes,
brioche, and sambuca.
Generic cliché about how much time you have. GO!
Roshni: Stuffed French Toast
Giuliano: Open-faced Cannoli
Giuliano's very meticulous, combining all of his
eggs in one basket, so to speak. Roshni, though, is bringing her influence into
the dish which is being made from ingredients not seen in Indian culture. Add to
that the clumpy chocolate sauce... and the clumpy potato sambuca blend... and it
becomes problematic. Meanwhile, it looks like Giuliano's going to give us
another photo finish with two minutes and zero plates. Alex believes that he'll
get the plates down. Marc.. far more pessimistic.
Final seconds tick down... and TIME. This is for
cash money. Let's go to the judges.
Roshni didn't like the potato, while the rest of
her dish is a comforting feel.
Giuliano's dessert has a lot of negative space.
"How does this happen twice?" Chris is let down TWICE. It's delicious, but
again, ill-conceived. Alex is touched personally.
So we have a culinary journey through India...
and a giant wrestle with the clock. The kicker is that Giuliano shows promise.
Will this prove to be a $10,000 mistake?
The final person to be chopped... is... GIULIANO.
He's very talented... but he never delivered a finished dish.
But his loss is Roshni Mansukhani's gain, as she
wins $10,000 as tonight's Chopped champion. Turns out that the mistake that her
family saw in her becoming a chef... was no mistake at all.
Next week, three more baskets, and three more
chefs who'll unfortunately hear Ted Allen's words... "You've been Chopped."
To see this episode in its
entirety, or to apply to be a contestant on "Chopped", visit the
official website at