One-on-One with the Latest Recruit Eliminated from the Red Team — Worst Cooks in America

by in Shows, March 10th, 2014

Red TeamOn Worst Cooks in America, 14 recruits have the tremendous opportunity to be mentored by Food Network chefs Anne Burrell and Bobby Flay. They’ve come to Boot Camp with some of the worst skills imaginable, but if they’re able to survive seven weeks of competition without getting eliminated, they might just be named the best of the worst and win $25,000. And their mentor gets bragging rights. This year, Anne is fighting to get back her title after losing to Bobby in Season 4. Every week, one recruit from each team is sent home.

FN Dish has the exclusive interviews with the eliminated recruits from the Red Team and the Blue Team.

More Worst Cooks in America
Exit Interview with the Eliminated Blue Team Recruit
Episode 4 Highlights (Photos)
Candy-Flavored Spring Rolls (Video)

In this week’s Skill Drill, the recruits found themselves making and serving sushi for local customers at a Japanese restaurant, who then voted on their efforts. The challenge proved to be more difficult for some than others, mainly Carol, who couldn’t get the hang of the process. For their Main Dish challenge the next day, Anne and Bobby tasked the recruits with making finger foods for a surprise birthday party for a special guest: Betsey Johnson’s daughter. But first, they had to pick flavored candies — which would influence their dishes — by hitting life-size Anne and Bobby pinatas. The fun came to an end later when Anne found that Carol’s food lacked the flavor she was hoping to find.

In the sushi challenge, you seemed to start off somewhat shaky but you got better as you went along. What was the most-difficult part for you?
There were a couple things that were difficult about the challenge. I had never sliced salmon and I had to slice it very thin. And you have to have delicate knife cuts, otherwise the salmon will break apart. Secondly, I took the plastic wrap off the sushi roll and I spent like 15-20 minutes looking for more plastic wrap, which I had trouble finding.

During the hors d’oeuvres challenge, you got flustered at times and had some issues opening the mustard and keeping your station clean, which Anne yelled at you for. Why do you think you struggled so much?
Anne always screams at me so that is nothing new. I did not keep a clean station, but I guess it was because in NYC we’re used to working in small spaces like that. The hardest part for me about the cooking challenge was working with ingredients that I’ve never used before, like ginger or the water chestnuts.

What did you think when Anne tasted your food and said it was a lot better than she expected it to taste?
I’m not sure what to take from it other than she really thought it was awful. So I went from terrible to not so bad. I guess I’m grateful for that. I don’t know what she thought initially. But I was pleased that it was tasty and she liked it. That’ a surprise coming from Chef Anne.

Carol and AnneYou seemed to have a really strong connection with Anne during the show. Can you tell us about that?
Anne has a tough persona but there’s something underneath that’s really caring and kind about her. Growing up in an Italian family, barking and screaming is just part of our DNA. But I think she really cares about teaching people. When you break through her exterior she’s a softy inside.

What was the hardest thing for you about doing the show?
I think the hardest thing for me was to try and stay calm and remember all the steps. When I get frustrated or insecure I’ll forget steps. I think that was a constant battle for me.

What are some top things you learned during your time on the show?
I now know how to use a knife correctly. And I’m pretty good at dicing onions and apples, which I never would have done before. I now have an understanding of how to layer and build flavors so that they become all connected in the end. It was interesting to learn that and Anne is just such a great teacher.

Did you ever think you would make it this far?
When I came into this, I was hoping that I wouldn’t get eliminated first. So I can’t believe I got this far. I’m just surprised and thankful. At my stage, to do something so different and out of the ordinary and having had the opportunity to develop along the way I think is just terrific. I’m really thrilled with myself that I’ve come this far.

What’s next for you? Will you be cooking a lot more?
I’m going to try the dishes that I made so that I get comfortable with that. And it will be a pleasure without a clock. I definitely will cook, especially the tomato sauce and chicken recipes. I’m not sure I’ll be making sushi rolls or spring rolls again.

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Comments (9)

  1. nonwatcher says:

    This is one of the worst written shows I have ever seen on Food Network. The writing is cheesy, and ignorant. The contestants and the hosts seem overpracticed and stupid. This show is an embarrassment and I will not watch anymore. It takes my IQ down about 50 points just to be in the same room while it is playing!

    • MoHub says:

      Just stay in line with your user name. No one is forcing you to watch, you know.

    • CVeraS says:

      Thats exactly what I Want to watch in the evening after what is going on in my life right now, and i am college educated. It is entertaining fluff with a few cooking tidbits thrown in. The characters are a lot more lovable this season I think. Its the same reason I watch Too Cute on Animal Planet – fluff with some pet tips thrown in. Its a free country, as the saying goes. You are free to watch CNN or FOX if you prefer.

  2. Stephanie says:

    Why doesn't Bobby Flay make that woman with the long, nasty looking fingernails cut them before she makes food for people? It's one thing if you want to have them and cook for yourself, but if you are preparing food for the public that seems very unsanitary! If I saw someone preparing my food with those fingernails, I would turn around and leave! Yuck!

    • Rena Pallo says:

      I agree with you. I would not touch anything she makes. Fungus is probably brewing under those nails. I don't care how many times she washes her hands, she should not be in that show. Food Network, Bobby Flay and Anne Burrell shame on you.

    • Barb says:

      I so totally agree with you Stephanie! makes me want to vomit every time
      I see her touch food!

  3. Gross Nails says:

    Please get rid of the woman with the nails! It is so disgusting to watch her work with food, especially when she uses her nails in the food and says, "This is when these nails come in handy." Can you imagine someone scraping food into a dish with normal length nails? How would you like to know a person shaved some pieces of some part of your dish with their fingernail? Picking that person to be on a the show was a real mistake. So unsanitary! Anne got mad when that person licked her fingers when she cooked…how is that much worse than nails in your food???

  4. Soul John says:

    Thank you for suggest your sweet blog

  5. Guest says:

    The woman with the disgusting, long, black, pointed fingernails just grosses me out. I can't watch her with the awful fingernails all up in the food. HAVE TO LEAVE THE ROOM. Would hate to think I ever ate anything she touched. Get rid of her and I will watch again. Otherwise- no way. VERY UNSANITARY and not up to standards for Food Network.

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