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Iron Chef America
Season 10
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Previous Episodes
October 23
November 13

"Our ultimate competition is with ourselves. That is what my uncle told me when I would visit him as a young boy... My uncle, the man the world knows as Kaga the Chairman, has decided that although America is a young country, we now possess the proper palate to host our own Iron Chef competition, an American celebration of the world's high art of cuisine."

Recaps by Chico Alexander, GSNN

Host ("The Chairman") Mark Dacascos
Iron Chefs Bobby Flay
Marc Forgione
Jose Garces
Masaharu Morimoto
Michael Symon
Culinary Commentator Alton Brown
Floor Reporter Kevin Brauch
Creator Keiichi Tanaka (based upon "Ryori no Tetsujin/Iron Chef")
EP Eytan Keller
Stephen Kroopnick
Stu Schreiberg
Packager Triage Entertainment & Fujisankei Communications Inc. for Food Network
Origins Kitchen Stadium America, Food Network Studios New York
Web foodnetwork.com/ica
Airs 10p ET Sun, Food

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Flay vs. Knibb: Battle Caviar
November 27

The Challenger: Chef Jason Knibb, born in Jamaica, raised in Southern California, and reared on the stylings of Wolfgang Puck and Roy Yamaguchi. Today, he heads the kitchen at San Diego eatery Nine-Ten. He will cross knives with the master among masters, Iron Chef Bobby Flay.

Prepare for battle.

Renee Forsberg & Christine Sanchez, sous-chefs
Jack Fisher & Kathy Jeon, sous-chefs
Southwestern COOKING STYLE Modern American

The Theme Ingredient: varieties of caviar, including sturgeon, salmon, and trout. The most expensive ingredient ever offered in Kitchen Stadium.

The Rules: Each chef must create a five-course meal, with each course utilizing the theme ingredients, 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 their dishes wins.

The 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 MONEY is on in Kitchen Stadium.

Knibb starts with cauliflower. Flay starts with his strategy, "vessels" for the caviar. Two of those will be lobster and salmon.

Jack has just turned the ice cream machine on. Flay's side is making compound butter, while both sides are working yeast into something. Both sides are also working on their blenders, but for what remains to be seen.

"Fifteen minutes have elapsed." Time to meet...

Tonight's Judges...
- Actress Cady Huffman (#4 on all-time appearances on ICA)
- Food writer Simon Majumdar ("The Next Iron Chef: Super Chefs")
- Food writer Laura Calder ("French Food at Home" on Cooking Channel)

Flay is breaking down tuna, while Renee is pounding on her lobster. THE ICE CREAM MACHINE is belching forth its creme fraiche goodness with American sturgeon caviar in the mix.

"Thirty minutes have elapsed." Let's catch up. Flay has soft-shelled tempura crabs, diced cucumber, and roasted corn, shallots, white wine, and cream in a blender. Knibb has a vinaigrette, thin potatoes, and caviar-infused pasta in strips. Flay may be working on a sandwich with the crabs, while Knibb is making a potato salad and some tempura cauliflower with thinly sliced fingerling potatoes.

And it turns out that his sandwich was just a snack for himself and his brigade.

Knibb is plating his first with scallops, tempura cauliflower, caviar creme fraiche, and a dollop of American sturgeon caviar. 

"Fifteen minutes to go." Knibb has added American caviar to the skillet of caviar-infused pasta, has cut fingerling and mixed with Vadouvan curry aioli. Flay counters with buckwheat blini, ricotta-basil stuffed blossoms, and diced scallops, parsley, and piquillo peppers.

We're coming down to the homestretch. Both sides are going to have a pancake. Knibb has pasta with caviar orbs, creme-fraiche ice cream, an open-faced sandwich, and the pasta. Flay has corn and avocado soups, a salad on sea-urchin toast, tuna sandwich with eggs, and squash blossoms and lobster.

And you probably already know this, but Bobby Flay LOVES caviar.

"Five seconds... three... two... one... " And Battle Caviar is history. Put it down and walk away.


Flay: "On the face of it, caviar seems to be an exciting ingredient, but when you think about it, putting direct heat on it is going to give it a real metallic flavor. So the idea was to create vehicles that sort of enhance the flavor and the texture."

- Corn Soup and Avocado Soup
- Sea Scallop Tartare
- Buckwheat Blini with Caviar
- Lobster & Caviar-Squash Stuffed Blossom
- Tuna Steak and Eggs

Knibb: "To bring out the flavor of the caviar, putting it as the focal point of the dish."

- Caviar Pancake Breakfast
- Caviar & Curry Potato Salad
- Caviar Tagliatelle with Caviar Sphere
- Seared Maine Sea Scallops with Caviar Beurre Blanc
- Creme Fraiche & Caviar Ice Cream

In the end, Flay started with something classic and built upon it. He had a very layered panel, and the judges could taste each and every layer. Visually Knibb had some stumbling points, but in the end, it's taste that matters. The judges seem to be at odds with each other over the caviar, but there can only be one winner. Will it be Knibb's original creations or Flay's bold flavors? Whose cuisine reigns supreme? The verdict...

Taste 20 17
Plating 12 11
Originality 12 10

... 44-38 in favor of Iron Chef Bobby Flay. The score tells the tale as Bobby Flay sweeps all three categories handily.

Until next battle, we bid you good eating.

To see this episode in its entirety, go to www.foodnetwork.com/ica.