vs. Casella: Battle Hawaiian Snapper
Chef Cesare Casella, an Italian-born, Italian-bred chef
who earned a Michelin star for his parents' trattoria
outside of Lucca. He has since been an executive
chef/owner at Salumeria Rosi in New York City and a dean
of the city's Italian Culinary Academy. His food is
simple, a base for great ingredients. Today, he'll go
knife to knife against the Latin American maestro, Iron
Chef Jose Garces
Prepare for battle.
The Crib Sheet:
Tim Spinner & Macgregor Mann, sous-chefs
Jessica Botta & Aaron Oster, sous-chefs
The Theme Ingredient: Hawaiian
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
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 Pristipomoides filamentosus is
ON in Kitchen Stadium! The Hawaiian snapper, aka the ruby snapper, aka
the opakapaka, have big eyes because they need to see 250 to 750 feet
deep, where they make their home. They go to market at one to five
pounds, but they can grow quite larger.
Today, Garces is going to go to the Far
East for inspiration. Casella is going top to tail with his fish,
pulling out every inch of flavor.
Morimoto has a lot of proteins on his
side, mainly fish, but Tila is actually using more vegetables than
anything. Jamison is working on three flour concoctions for the Iron
Chef. Three different doughs for three different seasons. Matsu, on the
other hand, is working on a scallion oil and an ogo-wakame mixture.
- Seafood expert Ben "Dr. Claw" Sargent
- Restauranteur Donatella Arpaia ("Donatella Cooks: Simple Food Made
- Grammy-winning pianist Yefim Bronfman
"Five seconds... three... two... one... "
And Battle Hawaiian Snapper is history. Put it down and walk away.
TASTING & JUDGMENT
"Sixty minutes is a very short time, but for true Italian cooking, this is
normal, because you don't need to cook it all the way, like this fish."
- Hawaiian Snapper Fritto
- Insalata del Pontormo al Mare with Snapper Belly
- Hawaiian Snapper Farrotto
- Regalo del Mare al Cartoccio
- Bigoli al Torchio with Snapper Ragu
Garces went from east to west with his spread...
- Hawaiian Snapper Tartare & Ceviche
- Smokes Hawaiian Snapper Chawanmushi
- Scallop & Snapper Sausage
- Macadamia Butter Poached Hawaiian Snapper
- Salt-Seared Hawaiian Snapper
Casella offered a buonissima taste of
Italy with the fish. The judges were pretty much floored by everything
he has presented, having shown deference to the ingredient. The Iron
Chef, not one to shy away from creativity, but in the end, it's taste
that matters. Whose cuisine reigns supreme?
... 60-54 in favor of
Iron Chef Jose Garces. Can't do any better than that. A
perfect 60, only the second perfect 60 ever logged in
Kitchen Stadium America, and it's by the Iron Chef.
Until next battle, we bid
you good eating.
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