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"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 Cat Cora
Bobby Flay
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 & Fuji TV for Food Network
Origins Kitchen Stadium America, Food Network Studios New York
Web foodnetwork.com/ica
Airs 10p Sun, Food
Available In High-Definition Where AvailableStreaming Online

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Symon/Psilakis vs. Carro Bros.: Battle Lemon
January 1

The challengers: Chefs Fabrizio & Nicola Carro, identical twins and sons of Italy, where they grew up eating that country's northern fare. After honing their craft, they moved to Miami, where they head the kitchen at Quattro, one of that city's famed Italian eateries. They've chosen to call out Iron Chef Michael Symon. But he is one, and you are two. So the Chairman has dispatched Symon's own culinary lookalike... Iron Chef (if only for a day) Michael Psilakis, executive chef at Kefi and Anthos in New York City AND judge on Food Network's "Ultimate Recipe Showdown".

Prepare for battle.

The Crib Sheet:
Cory Barrett, sous-chef
Tomaso, sous-chef
Greek/Mediterranean COOKING STYLE Northern Italian

The Theme Ingredient: Genoa and Meyer lemons.

The Rules: Each team of chefs 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 chefs that best articulate 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!"

Battle Lemon is on in Kitchen Stadium. The Genoa lemons are a standard lemon that you would see in kitchens. They came to America in 1875. The Meyer lemons were discovered in China in 1980. They're sweeter and less acidic with less of the aromatic oils you see in standard kitchen lemons. The Carros are working on a langoustine and a pasta, while the Michaels are starting by roasting lemons. Sous-chef Cory is working on a batter, while Symon is squeezing some lemons on veal.

Five minutes into the battle.. Ice cream, you scream. The Carros are making a lemon sorbet AND a zabaglione with limoncello.

"Fifteen minutes have elapsed." Carros are making a lemon sorbet and a lemon-herb langoustine, while the Mikes have marinated veal and roasted lemons. After the break, the Carros zest lemons on a gremolata and a buffalo ricotta mixture. Chefs Symon & Psilakis have celeriac, leeks, zest, and cream simmering, and a pasta dough in the oven.

Tonight's Judges:
- Director of entertainment for the ambassador to Greece Cathleen Lambridis
- Italian culinary expert Mario Rizotti (Academia Barilla)
- Actress Tia Mowry ("The Game")
- Actress Tamera Mowry ("Roommates")

There's something you've never seen before... Frenching a rack of rabbit.

Sous chef Cory is making some lemon custard. Both sides are working on a ricotta mix while the lemon sherbet that Cory made is being put on lemon biscuits to refreeze.

"Thirty minutes have elapsed." Challengers have a pasta filling, a rack of rabbit, and a zabaglione. Iron Chef has a lemon in simple syrup, buffalo ricotta, and a Farina custard. They also have lemon-brined grape leaves and artichoke hearts. The Carros counter with round pasta, scallops, and Frenched rack of rabbit. The pasta... being filled for culingiones. The roasted lemons are being added to Psilakis' Greek yogurt. Symon has a similar pasta on his side. And Cory's biscuits are coming out of the freezer and being engulfed in... a meringue! We're making baked Alaska!

Psilakis is making an escolar sashimi. Looks like both sides are going for a lemon-ricotta stuffed pasta, a frozen lemon delight, and a lemon paired with shellfish. "Ten minutes to go." Plating has just gotten under way. The IC side is starting with the veal. Challengers are starting to plate the risotto and plating zucchini ribbons. They're wrapping that around asparagus as Tomaso is plating the langoustine... and risotto with scallops. Psilakis is making his escolar dish. Symon has his ravioli.

Over with the challengers, they've made sgroppino to go with the langoustine scampi. Pasta is also down with zucchini. IC counters with a cocktail of his own with the escolar. That'll open. Then there's the ravioli, the veal with celeriac puree, cockles and orzo with avgolemeno.

"One minute to go." Challengers have lemon, scampi, ravioli, scallop risotto, and zabaglione. And both teams are torching their dessert. This is going to be an interesting judge, that's for sure.

"Five seconds... three... two... one..." Battle Lemon... OVER. Judgment... forthcoming.

Judgment (Carro): "We've made a full menu from cold appetizer to dessert. We know we can play a lot with lemon."

- Lemon-Marinated Scampi with Fava Beans & Sgroppino
- Lemon-Flavored Ravioli with Baby Zucchini Sauce
- Lemon Risotto with Scallops
- Rabbit Fiorentina in Lemon Sauce with Asparagus Gratin
- Limoncello Zabaglione

Judgment (Symon/Psilakis): "We wanted to take the lemon and show you a bunch of different ways of doing it, and make our two styles meld to give you a really beautiful and complete meal."

- Greek Sashimi Escolar with Galaktoboureko and Lemon Yogurt
- Lemon Ravioli with Ricotta
- Avgolemeno Greek Lemon Soup with Shellfish
- Lemon-Braised Veal Breast
- Baked Alaska with Honey-Lemon Sherbet and Lemon Curd

A very lemony battle had matching dishes, matching cuisines, matching approaches, matching chefs, and matching judges. Will the verdict be equally as matching? Whose cuisine reigns supreme?

Taste 38 36
Plating 20 17
Originality 19 17

... 77-70 in favor of Iron Chef Michael Symon & Chef Michael Psilakis. This was a blowout with a perfect presentation score and darn near a perfect taste score. Hopefully, this doesn't sour the twins who gave their all in this battle. They can return to South Beach with their heads held high.

Until next battle, we bid you good eating.

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