"Flay vs. Murphy:
Battle Breakfast" - March 11
Editor's Note: What follows is a
televised-move-by-televised-move recap. Because a
sixty-minute battle, intro, and judgment has to be
edited into 45 minutes of airtime, not every move will
Marc Murphy, a diplomat's son, who lived in Milan,
Paris, Rome, and Washington, DC. Today, you can see his
creations at Landmarc in New York City. He challenges
fellow New Yorker, the Blue Tetsujin, Bobby Flay.
Prepare for battle...
The Crib Sheet:
Brian Ray & Neil Manacle, sous-chefs
Carla Bevan & Frank Proto, sous-chefs
14-5-2, won last battle
against Lynn Crawford
The Theme Ingredient:
several breakfast items, including eggs, sausages,
bacon, breads, and juices. And, of course, maple syrup.
The Rules: Each chef
must create a five-course meal, with each course
utilizing the theme ingredient, within 60 minutes. The
judges will score the dishes on a 20-point scale: 10
points taste, 5 points plating and presentation, 5
points creativity and use of ingredient. The chef that
best articulates the theme ingredient through his dishes
The Kia battle
clock is set at 60 minutes, which will start when the
Chairman, with full heart and empty stomach, utters the words of
his dear uncle.... "Allez cuisine!" And Battle
Breakfast is on!
And already we have chilies going on the IC's side.
Looks like he's going to poach with cinnamon and
vanilla, while Murphy has lobsters. Flay looks like he's
making maple mangoes and on a separate sheet, salmon.
Murphy looks like he's going to bake eggs in shell,
while Flay is going to smoke something. Challenger is
working jasmine rice and tea. Frank blends tomatoes. IC
is sauteeing tomatillos. Murphy is still working his
bacon, while making a custard with orange zest.
Sugar, flour, five-spice,
and milk... looks like a batter. Challenger pours
cognac. Murphy has his own batter working. Frank is
making a bacon/tomato sauce.
IC is reducing pinot noir
while Neil's poblanos are out. Carla mixes lobster roe
and butter, while IC is creaming eggs, cream cheese, and
mascarpone. A side of salmon getting ready to be smoked.
Neil is making another batter with pumpkin. Flay looks
like he's working on filet mignon, and sausage is down
on the IC side. He's blending his reduction of mango and
hone with maple syrup. Challenger has lobsters and eggs
Actress Julie White ("The Nanny Diaries")
Culinary author Ted Allen ("Queer Eye for the Straight
Actress Cady Huffman ("Romance and Cigarettes")
Frank takes Murphy's custard
and chills it. Looks like we're getting a bloody Mary
"Thirty minutes have
elapsed." Let's see how the battle is faring. The Iron
Chef has a pumpkin spice batter still whisking away,
while we also have a butter/allspice mix working and a
round of Bloody Marys. Lucky. Challenger is making toast
sticks, sausage patties, and deep-fried bacon. Flay is
whipping up some home fries with potatoes, jalapenos,
onions, and paprika. We're also working on some steak,
while guava jelly and cream & mascarpone cheese are
getting whipped together. Murphy is scrambling some eggs
on a double-boiler.
Baked eggs are out... and
thrown away? Apparently Murphy was only going to set
those rock salts as molds. Elsewhere we have asparagus
with some shaved parm on top.
Brian: "I hate clams."
... as he tries to open some clams. Carla is working on
that rice for congee with sausage, green onions, and
bacon. Flay has some waffles, a little bit too over
done. "At least we know they work." Neil is working
poblanos and cascabels into ... something. Pinot noir is
still on the stove. "Twenty minutes to go." Murphy is
cutting some salad greens. For what, we don't know.
Quail eggs also out. Flay is grilling steak. Murphy is
turning those greens and quail eggs into something for a
tomato soup of some sort.
Back to the pumpkin
batter, as Flay soaks bread in it. Steak is off the
grill, while home fries are standing by. Murphy is
making French toast, congee, and tomato sauce with an
egg in it. The Iron Chef is brushing mango glaze onto
bacon strips, lobster is sliced, and waffles have been
plated. Challenger has his breadsticks on a plate, his
lobster is in the convection oven, and eggs continue to
We're under 10, as the
challenger's flan is just about finished. Carla is
making lobster roe grits. The parmesan asparagus is
going down with that flan. Flay has finished his
waffles. The grits and quail eggs are done on the
challenger's side. Lobster and home fries, smoked
salmon, French toast, and waffle guava. Challenger is
making a scrambled egg trio. Challenger has plated the
congee with egg yolk with butter and French toast. Flay
now has his salmon with crab scrambled eggs with pinot
noir syrup. We also have overeasy eggs with steak.
"Five minutes to go."
Murphy has a coddled egg, asparagus with flan, French
toast, lobster grits, congee, scrambled egg trio, ...
wow, six dishes. Flay has the home fries, French toast,
waffles, steak sandwich, and the salmon dish. That's
five. With a minute left, everything is just those extra
five points now.
And we have time to serve
mimosas to Alton, Kevin, and the judges... what, none
for the Chairman? What the hell?
Now to the count.
"Three... two... one...." Done. Put it down, walk away,
Battle Breakfast is history. Now to judge.
Judgment (Murphy): "I think the strategy was to
get out some good food, and we decided to get some
different countries shown."
Dishes: Trio of Scrambled Eggs, Bacon Flan, Lobster and
Bacon Grits, Sausage and Bacon Congee, Eggs Poached in
Tomato Sauce, French Toast.
Judgment (Flay): "Chef Marc went sort of all
around the world, and I always try to stay domestically
as much as I can." Dishes:
Lobster Home Fries, Waffles with Guava and Mango, Smoked
Salmon with Scrambled Eggs, Chipotle-glazed Filet
Mignon, Pumpkin Custard French Toast.
The challenger's dishes were
very "Breakfast-y". The Iron Chef's dishes...
brunch-extended. The ladies like the dishes involving
But whose cuisine reigns
supreme? The verdict...
... 54-45 in favor of
Iron Chef Bobby Flay. Taste and plating is what carried
the day for the Iron Chef. The sun will rise on him
today as he prepares for his next challenge.
Until next time, we bid you