Top Chef Recap: Episode 1 – Amuse Douche
The third season of everyone’s favorite gourmet for gonzos cooking show has hit the air, and thus the occasion for endless simmer’s first weekly column (yeah, yeah, we’ll get it up on the right days and weeks when we launch).
The chefs are in Miami, where they started out cooking in Gianni Versace’s mansion, which is kinda creepy, because, um – wasn’t he murdered there? Anyway, for the first quickfire challenge, they each had to take generic cocktail party fare and turn it into an amuse-bouche, which apparently translates as “a mouth amuser,” and basically means really fucking fancy cocktail party fare.
It was clear from the start that poor Southern hick Clay would be amusing us for only the first episode, despite the fact that he “likes to cook food that tastes good” and believed some sort of blue-state/red-state calculus meant being from Dixie had it all wrapped up for him. Also, I just learned what an amuse-bouche is, but I could have already told you a fruit salad is not one. The only other character who stood out from the crowd was Hung, a 29-year-old sous chef from Vegas and this season’s laughably unrealistic supervillain.
The main challenge was a surf-and-turf made from out-there ingredients like rattlesnake and kangaroo. The coolest-looking dishes were actually the ones made from sea urchin. Anybody ever cooked with that? My interest is piqued.