Under the Sea — Worst Cooks in America

by in How-to, Shows, March 19th, 2012

seafood tower worst cooks in america
From lobster to mussels to shrimp and whole arctic char, the sixth episode of Worst Cooks in America had the remaining recruits peeling, shucking and filleting several deep-sea treasures. For their first task, each team had to create a seafood tower, one of the most expensive dishes on a restaurant menu, consisting of mussels, lobster, shrimp, oysters and crab. After that, each member grabbed their knives and filleted a whole arctic char to create a dish for their mentor.

Everyone seemed to have issues at one point or another with cooking and/or prepping their seafood dishes. You can overcook shellfish in mere seconds, and choosing fresh fish can be intimidating. Below are Food Network’s simple step-by-step tips to create the ultimate seafood feast.

peel and devein shrimpPeeling and deveining shrimp at home is easy and can also save you money at the fish counter. For completely peeled and deveined shrimp, gently twist to remove the head if it’s still attached. Then go underneath, where the legs are attached, and dig your thumb under the shell to release. Next, remove the tail with a gentle tug. Lay the shrimp down and run your paring knife along the back to remove the thin gray vein.

Browse our peeling and deveining step-by-step photo gallery.

pick and store fishThe very best meals start with the very best ingredients, and fish is no exception. If you learn how to buy it, you can let the fish do all the work. If you’re buying whole fish, they should be shiny and sparkly with firm flesh; clean small, tight scales; red gills; and clear eyes.

If you’re buying steak or fish fillets, they should have a moist sheen and slightly translucent, dense flesh that feels firm to the touch.

Learn how to pick and store fish by watching this video.

Takeaway seafood tips from this show:

1. If you see a mussel semi-opened, it’s dead so discard it

2. Don’t overcook mussels, they’ll taste like little rubber balls

3. Create a flavorful cooking liquid so your seafood soaks up the seasonings

4. Cook shrimp until they’re opaque

5. The sauces that complement your seafood should have impact

Recipes from this show:

Bobby’s Mussels With White Wine

Anne’s Tartar Sauce

Tune in for new episodes: Sunday at 9 pm Eastern/8 pm Central

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Comments (40)

  1. Rueben says:

    Pleasantly surprised that both teams did well at the seafood challenge. It was Tiffany's time to go. I think Chef Anne had a difficult decision. Kelly's final dish looked the most appetizing. I'm just glad I didn't have to taste it, especially the tuna tartar with the "Holy salt lick Batman" comment by Chef Anne.

  2. jeri says:

    Tiffany's time was last week, she just lucked out when Benjamin voluntarily left. Vinny's filleting of that fish was very good, as he said it would be. David did a good job after filleting his thumb instead of the fish. My husband loves salt so he probably would have liked Kelli's dish! Melissa, as usual, paid attention to details. Overall the recruits did a good job.

  3. Terri says:

    When Chef Anne and Bobby finished the seafood combo and sauces telling them to eat, I wanted to reach in there with them and get my fair share. Looked so delicious! One of my favorite seafood dishes is a well-prepared crab cake among many others.

  4. JLF says:

    I was so surprised (but not disappointed) at Dorothy's elimination. In spite of her terrible job of butchering her salmon (she really did butcher it), Anne still said her plate was tasty. So with Kelli's salt lick and David's tub of mayo, I was sure Dorothy was going to slide through again. Could be that her boasting that she was "gonna put on her big girl panties" and deal with the lobster, and then squealed like she still had her training pants on showed she's more talk than walk. I was so proud of Kelli for stepping up and getting it done.

    I'm rooting for David to make it to the finals for Anne, but I really think Bobby has the stronger team with Melissa and Vinny. Both are paying attention and showing a great deal of growth and confidence. I would be happy with either of them winning it all.

    As for Tiffany – her bad job on the sauces and her resistance to even get in there with the seafood confirmed that she she doesn't have what it takes. And her flirtation with Bobby was just embarassing. Bye-bye.

    • jeri says:

      I nearly cracked up laughing at Dorothy dealing with that lobster. I thought with all her big girl panty talk she would just get right in there. Kelli did a good job. I was glad Chef Anne told David to take out some of that huge pile of mayo. I like mayo, but that much??? Tiffany never did make a good sauce, she took the sauce to avoid the fish. Melissa has good plating skills. Vinny and Melissa have shown a lot of improvement. I would like Chef Anne to go undefeated but but I think Bobby's team is pretty strong. As for Tiffany….good by and better luck at the poker table.

    • FanFare57 says:

      I agree with you. Dorothy added the seaweed to the seafood tower and Anne thought that was a beautiful touch. Good thought process at work. Tiffany served an open-faced salmon sandwich. How pedestrian.
      Dorothy's elimination surprised me while Tiffany's departure was expected.

      • jeri says:

        Tiffany should have left last week, saved only by Benjamin's voluntary departure. I was somewhat surprised with Dorothy's departure. She has had many saves. The seaweed in the tower was grand and added to a great display. Overall good work.

        • Foodiemommies says:

          Tiffany seemed LA fake with a professional chef mom. I vote for the Texas gal who is way more fun than the Texas vegan boy.

  5. Toni says:

    I was incredibly disappointed when Bobby showed how to deveign shrimp, but yet Ann only told them how to kill a lobster – she MUST know that you have to remove the lobsters intestines! I was shocked when nothing was said or done about it.

    • MoHub says:

      I'm sure both Bobby and Anne showed their teams all the techniques required, but in the interest of time, the editors traded off showing their instruction so viewers would get the whole picture without having to sit through everything twice.

    • jeri says:

      The recruits are shown technique and how to prepare the dish. But as MoHub said we do not get to see all that. With the confines of TVtherejust isn't time.

  6. Sandy says:

    Funny that the 2 that were traded earlier in the show to opposite teams, (Melissa and David), wind up being part of the final 2 left…! I think being traded energized them to really try their best to prove their worth after being swapped. Kudos to both of them! I kinda thought Vinnie probably could cook til he made that nacho chip and bread sandwich..or whatever that comfort food sandwich was which he made when his team lost the seafood challenge. That looked nasty. OK with either David OR Kelly winning since its Anne's team. She's kinda loud and all but Bobby Flay wins so much on Iron Chef America AND on his Throwdown show..so I want Anne to win…but I really like Bobby too. I'd rather be trained by Bobby. He's low key & I like that. Sometimes Anne gets a bit too high strung for me.

    • JLF says:

      I'm glad that David has stepped it up so well in the last half of the competition. I hope he's Anne's finalist. But I'm rooting for Bobby's team whether it's Melissa (first choice) or Vinny (very close 2nd). I also favor Bobby's more low key, encouraging style of teaching. Love his dry humor and ability to stay composed when his team goofs. I think he has made it more about his team, where Anne seems to be taking it more personally – "Red Team, you're killing me!"

      • FanFare57 says:

        Yes, you're right. I see the same contrast. However, they have different personalities as well. For Anne, there's probably a lot of pride on the line. She wants to win as she has the previous 2 seasons.

  7. Barbara says:

    Has anyone else noticed that Anne is wearing a wedding ring? Has she gotten married recently?

    • jeri says:

      As far as I know, which is not much, she is single. If you pay attention to rumor mills, she is gay, married, divorced, pregnant, and has 19 kids!! I don't like rumor mills and dont give any of them any credit. If Chef Anne wants her fans in her personal life she will tell us. If not, then we should mind our own business. What she does or does not do in her personal life is just that, personal and we should should keep our noses out until invited.

  8. Randee says:

    This is the funniest show on TV right now. Keep up the good work.

  9. Foodiemommies says:

    I love WCIA. I thought the last episode showed how likable everyone was and that the remaining chefs have amateur chef skills. This season has read like "Chopped" for dummies. Kelli is so sweet. Dorothy, Melissa, Tiffany and Vinnie always seemed to be able to cook and have relations to professional chefs. The fun and witty chefs are all now MIA from WCIA. I want to watch "The Bennett and Bobby Show"-that would bring sexy back. Let's have Sarina and Erica as sous chefs in the season finale hosted with commentary by Anthony and Bennett. The cooking is getting better but the flavor has left the show.

    • JLF says:

      I don't miss Sarina a bit with her whiney "Oh helpless me" act. I thought Bennett tried too hard to be clever – did not seem sincere. Erica was amusing for a couple of episodes, but wore me out with her scatterbrain. There were some (Tiffany in particular) who struck me as being there for their 15 minutes of TV fame. I'm very satisfied with the remaining contestants and will enjoy the final with whoever makes it.

  10. KimbersandsKimKim says:

    I've been very disappointed this season on the choice of contestants – namely one: Tiffany. She is a professional "reality star". She has appeared on "the Amazing Race". Google her and look at her website. I thought this show was about everyday, ordinary people trying to cook that suck at it. If this is a direction that FN continues to take – I will stop watching. Have already cut back this year compared to the last 8 years as a faithful fan……not so much anymore

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