Note: Do not read on if you have not seen Season 5, Episode 5 of FOX's MasterChef, titled "Top 17 Compete."
Here comes the drama. This week the chefs had another team challenge of cooking for a beach wedding. Simple task of making an appetizer involving scallops and an entree of sea bass. Simple, right?
And it was, actually. Both teams executed gorgeous looking dishes with minimal difficulty and complaint -- even the bride and groom were torn about which was better. But the actual teamwork? A disaster.
Scottish Francis headed up the Blue Team and was in control, decisive, and calm the whole time. For that, they won the round.
And then? There's Leslie's Red Team. He is just not a good captain. First of all, he lets everyone sort of weigh in on the dish and the team seems unsure about the concept and vision for the food. Secondly, he keeps walking around yelling "talk to me!" while they're cooking. Teammates Ahran and Francis B try to step up and help out; Jordan's wandering aimlessly around the kitchen. Worst of all, Tyler keeps snacking on the branzino and they run short on portions. Having worked in food service, I can tell you -- freaking out, wandering around, and eating during service are some of the cardinal sins of line cooking. I could barely watch.
Needless to say, Red loses. Instead of being a normal team captain, Leslie, when given the chance to share who he would send home, chooses Daniel and Ahran. Has he never watched a reality competition show before? The captain is supposed to go down with the ship. If anything, it makes the judges and audience like you more. Luckily it's not up to him, but the judges did trick him into revealing his true feelings. If he was unpopular before, he's now a villain.
Leslie, Francis B, and Jordan have to cook steak frites for the pressure test, which I think is Gordon Ramsey's favorite way of weeding out good cooks and clueless ones. I just feel like I've seen this before. "Two and half minutes on each side, and must have a good sear..."
Leslie's, despite, being obnoxious, pulls through with a "perfect" steak and "dreadful" fries. Though he does put raw herbs on the plate as garnish. Cardinal sin of kitchens #5 -- garnishes should serve a purpose and be pretty. No one wants to chew on raw rosemary. He's not going home, much to the balcony's chagrin.
Jordan gets the temp on the steak wrong and shows up with "flaccid" fries. Francis B received a lot of help on his compound butter from the peanut gallery. He keeps getting a one up from his teammates; he's a good cook, but he keeps ending up in the elimination challenges and squeaking through. His temp was off, but the flavors save him.
In all, they have to send poor Jordan home. And thank goodness. At least pretend to know what you're doing when you're working.
What did you think of the challenge? What about a Leslie and Francis B face-off? Let me know in the comments or @karenfratti.
"MasterChef" airs Monday at 8 p.m. ET on FOX.
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