There was a lot to be learned from last night's farm-centric episode of Top Chef. Aside from the lesson that good ingredients are only as good as their preparations, did you know that farmers still wore those big straw hats? And who knew that an idyllic summer could arrive so quickly after that Christmas episode? Anyway, with the field narrowed to nine, the chefs continue to get a good deal of individual screen time, so let's head to a recap full of quotable quotes, Hung Huynh, those crazy Euros we're all growing to love and so much more:
1) Beloved former winner Hung makes a cameo to judge the QF, and to remind us of when crazy innovation actually took place on the show that now seems to often involve making French toast and roasting potatoes.
2) Quickfire: The challenge: make a dish from canned ingredients in just 15 minutes, because, you see, Hung was the fastest cheftestant ever. Local lass Jamie Lauren pretty much throws up her hands from the get-go, tossing odds and ends on a piece of toast and calling it bruschetta amidst giggles. Hung doesn't like; Stefan and his grilled cheese/spam sandwich get immunity.
3) We also witness the return of the Soundbyte Machine That Is Fabio. Our personal favorite from last night involved his explanation of a pig's circle of life: "You born, you been raise-ed it, and you gets killed for the porpoise, but stillin dees lifetime process, you should deserve respect." Also, Fabio pronounces "Toby Young" as "Tubby Young." Which is fun.
4) Elimination: It's a field trip upstate to Stone Farms to visit the locavore seated at the right hand of The Alice, Mr. Dan Barber. Three teams of three get a protein—chicken, lamb or pork—with which to prepare a seasonal lunch for the farmers.
5) Your requisite ridiculous Tobyism of the episode: "Pesto is the big bad wolf which has blown this pig's house down." He is not serious, is he? (Yes, he is).
6) Related: the forced laughs by Pads/Tom after Toby's jokes are just getting uncomfortable at this point.
7) Team Chicken—Jamie, Stefan and
Big Bird Carla—is without a doubt the most entertaining team ever. Stefan—still with the crush on the lesbian—arouses himself by deliberately pissing off Jamie, while Carla complains that she "can't create in that energy." They should be together every time.
8) "I'm the only cock in the stall." —Stefan, so incredibly overjoyed and proud of himself that he made a joke (...in reference to being the only male presence in the house of hens).
9) Winners & Losers: Team Chicken shares the top prize, meaning you can chalk up two wins in a row for JL. On the flip side, Team Lamb winds up on the bottom despite the best efforts of Team Pig and Slow Motion Radhika. In the end, cuddlebuddies Leah and Hosea throw old lady Ariane under the bus. Being a Jersey gal, Ariane gets in her last jabs in the exit interview: “Leah was not a good team player, and neither is Hosea. He’s a wimp. He’s crying, he’s nervous, nervous, nervous when we’re waiting to go to Judges’ Table, with his tail between his legs."
10) Next week: Restaurant Wars! Restaurant Wars!
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