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The Next Iron Chef
Season 2
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October 4
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October 25
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November 8
November 15

Ten chefs will rise through the ranks, but only one will achieve greatness. Who will be the next Iron Chef?

Recaps by Chico Alexander, GSNN

Hosts Mark Dacascos ("The Chairman") & Alton Brown
Judges Donatella Arpaia
Anya Fernald
Jeffrey Steingarten
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 American Culinary Institute, Los Angeles
Airs 9p Sun, Food
Available In High-Definition Where AvailableStreaming Online

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November 22

For the last few weeks, 10 chefs have been grilled on the skills and knowledge needed to be an Iron Chef. One by one, they cooked. One by one they were judges. One by one, they left, until there were only two remaining: pastry chef Jehangir Mehta and Latin chef Jose Garces. At the end of the hour, one of them will be the Next Iron Chef.


Both chefs have won three tests, but the only win that matters now is a win in Kitchen Stadium. Let's take a look at the tale of the tape...

The Crib Sheet:
Tim Spinner & Chad Williams, sous-chefs
Maiki Le & Andres Vazquez, sous-chefs
Latin American COOKING STYLE Pastry
Chicago (by way of Philadelphia) HOMETOWN Mumbai, India (by way of New York City)

Joining the judging panel tonight are three members of Iron Chef royalty: Iron Chefs Bobby Flay, Masaharu Morimoto, and the winner of the last season of Next Iron Chef, Mike Symon.

The challenge, produce five dishes that exemplify the ethnic melting pot of American cuisine.

The Theme Ingredient: ribs & racks of cow, buffalo, and pig.

This is for the title. You can't buy it. You can't rent it. You have to earn it. 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 the final test is on! Garces' strategy is to get all of his meat in several pressure cookers to simmer them and get them to a workable place.

In the first 20 minutes of battle, Mehta have formed ground pork patties while making saffron rice. He also has curry yogurt spare ribs. Garces is making rounds of buffalo ribeye while a dough is in the stand mixer. But he's having problems searing his meat on the grill.

While Alton has been talking to the judges, Mehta had malbec wine and sugar on the heat, while Garces is working with pinto beans and chanterelle mushrooms.

And Chef Mehta wouldn't be Chef Mehta without... ICE CREAM MACHINE!

"Thirty minutes have elapsed." Garces' side has barbecue sauce, while Mehta's side has a malfunctioning pressure cooker. Garces has made a honey-herb mustard rub, coated his grilled pork loin, and put it in the oven, while Chef Mehta's baby backs are out of the pressure cooker, apricots have been added, and the dish is being finished in the salamander.

"Fifteen minutes to go."

Chef Mehta's already plating his apricot pork rib on cole slaw. He also continues to plate while the buffalo is stuck inside the pressure cooker. Those dumplings will not have the secret ingredient in them.

Mehta's pork and bacon burgers are on the grill, while Garces' baby back ribs have been hit with the spicy barbecue sauce. With ten minutes left, Garces has yet to plate. He calls for plates.

In the meantime, Mehta has brushed his chocolate wine reduction onto a plate, and the pork burger is plated with apricot ribs. Garces has plated his pork loin, and he has meat ready for his carnitas.

"Five minutes to go."

Mehta's pressure cooker is finally open. The buffalo that was inside is going on TOP of those dumplings.

"One minute to go."

Going over plates now, Garces has baby back ribs, pork loin, carnitas, the tartare with ribeye, and his flatbread. Mehta has dumplings, ribs, burger, spare ribs, and the buffalo steak. He'll close with the avocado ice cream on steak tartare. All the hopes and dreams are going to come to this...

"Five seconds... three... two... one..." And that's it, the competition is OVER!

Judgment (Mehta): "I think America makes up different cultures, different countries, and that's how we are traversing through the meal, with different cultures pushed onto your plates."

- "Smothered" Buffalo Dumplings
- Pork Burger with Chipotle Mayo
- Indian Style Spare Rib with Saffron Palau
- Buffalo Steak with Chocolate Malbec Sauce
- Buffalo Tartare with Avocado Sorbet

The consensus is that Mehta tried to do too many things and it ended up hurting more of his dishes than helping.

Judgment (Garces): "I was born and raised in Chicago. I couldn't think of a better place that exemplified the American melting pot"

- Buffalo Tartare with Kobe Sirloin wit Buffalo Rib Steak Cooked Au Poivre
- Carnitas Taco
- The German: Pork loin crusted with mustard & herbs
- Beef Short Rib Pizza with Balsamic Marmalade
- Baby Back Ribs with Spicy Barbecue Sauce

Garces used a variety of techniques with a variety of ingredients, and the end result speaks to that and his highlight of the secret ingredient.

Jeff thinks that the Iron Chefs favor Garces. Donatella says that each chef lacks something that the other has. Anya thinks that Mehta's presentation was weak and Garces' dishes were monotonous. Morimoto says that being an Iron Chef means to be challenged to be creative. Mehta has a lot more experience, and that will tip the scale to his favor. Jeff adds on that Morimoto wins in KSA because of said creativity. Symon adds, "He's able to be creative because he's a master technician and a master of fundamentals." If you create and you fail, are you creative or are you a failure? That question will determine who the next Iron Chef is.

And now, the moment of truth. Either Jehangir Mehta or Jose Garces is going to be inducted into a pantheon that only has a handful of members worldwide.

The Next Iron Chef...


... is...


JOSE GARCES! And the new Tetsujin ascends to the Chairman's mantle.

Ten started the journey. For nine of them, the road has met its end. But for Chef Jose Garces... Iron Chef Jose Garces... the journey is only just beginning. and if we have chosen wisely, then it will be a journey made bright by lots of delicious victories. Congratulations to you, wear the jacket well.

Until his momentous first battle as an Iron Chef... We bid you good eating.

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