by Leah Brickley in Recipes, Shows, December 9th, 2015
by Ricky Smith in Shows, December 8th, 2015
There was definitely a holiday vibe in the Chopped Junior kitchen, and our contestants were thrown some pretty tough curveballs, like gingerbread houses and snowmen made from doughnuts. But we were mostly interested in using potato pancakes, an ingredient in the entree basket, as a bun for an easy sandwich perfect for a boxed lunch.
by Ricky Smith in Shows, December 1st, 2015
Everyone has leftover holiday food in the fridge after all the celebrations are over, and that’s exactly what was in the mystery basket from the Holiday Cooking episode of Chopped
. On an all-new Chopped After Hours
, judges Scott Conant, Aarón Sánchez and Geoffrey Zakarian were tasked with creating an entree with beef tenderloin, gingersnap cocktail, potato latkes and tzimmes.
by Ricky Smith in Shows, November 26th, 2015
Normally, well-respected chefs would cringe at the thought of boxed macaroni and cheese, but the appetizer basket from the special Mac and Cheese episode of Chopped is a different story. “If someone doesn’t use that little bag of powder in here, total cop-out — you’re chopped,” Alex Guarnaschelli says. In this new installment of Chopped After Hours, Alex — along with her fellow judges Maneet Chauhan and Aarón Sánchez — must make an appetizer using boxed mac and cheese, Canadian bacon, Swiss chard and monkfish.
Alex begins studding her monkfish with the bacon for flavor and plans on making a macaroni and cheese sauce for the dish. “I’m going full-on blasphemy and anarchy,” she says of her dish. Aarón and Maneet are going a little more traditional, however. Aarón is making escabeche (a Spanish fish dish made with vinegar) while Maneet has envisioned the fish with a korma sauce (a traditional Indian nut-based sauce). When Maneet and Aarón realize they’re both using saffron for their sauces, Aarón responds, “You’ve been saffroned.”
by Ricky Smith in Shows, November 24th, 2015
Having a glass or two of wine in the Chopped
kitchen isn’t a rare occurrence, but during this round it’s almost a necessity. That’s because judges Amanda Freitag, Marc Murphy and Alex Guarnaschelli are taking on the appetizer basket from the Pub Food episode of Chopped. On the all-new episode of Chopped After Hours
, they’re required to use house-cured bacon, deviled eggs, fish cheeks and housemade pickles in a completely original appetizer.
Amanda is not shy about admitting her love for the basket: “I look at the whole thing and I think, ‘Thank you.’ You have acid, you have fat, you have bacon, you have eggs and you have fish cheeks!” She starts off using the brine from the pickles, which she and Ted Allen both agree is underutilized at home and should be saved more often. “Amanda and I are starting an organization called Pickles without Borders,” Ted says. Alex is using the pickle brine in a vinaigrette to go alongside a frito misto — a platter of fried foods that she does not think she has enough time to finish. When Ted disagrees, Alex replies, “I appreciate the vote of confidence, my friend, but, you know, we’re only human, Ted.”
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, November 23rd, 2015
The dessert basket in the Cooking with Bass episode of Chopped
may seem like a great start to dessert, but judges Amanda Freitag, Maneet Chauhan and Marc Murphy aren’t too enthusiastic. On a new Chopped After Hours
, they must cook a final course using zucchini, chocolate-covered raisins, peanut brittle and vanilla liqueur. “What’s the first initial problem with all of this?” Ted Allen asks. “Too sweet!” the judges reply unanimously.
They all realize the zucchini is going to be their saving grace when it comes to toning down the sweetness. Marc points out that you can make a zucchini cake just as easily as you can make a carrot cake, to which Maneet replies, “You can — ’cause that’s exactly what I’m going to do!” They all get off to a quick start, with Marc whisking up a batter for zucchini fritters. Amanda doesn’t want to give away her dish, so she just shouts, “I’m making a cake — that’s all you need to know!”
by Leah Brickley in Recipes, Shows, November 18th, 2015
There’s no question that every competitor wants to make it to the final round on Chopped
for a chance to win the $10,000. But reaching the dessert round can also be intimidating to those with little pastry experience. Tonight, for the first time, all the rounds featured dessert baskets, and luckily the competitors were all pastry chefs. And the judges were anxious to try one of the baskets for themselves.
In a new episode of After Hours, judges Maneet Chauhan, Geoffrey Zakarian and Alex Guarnaschelli took on cooking with Mississippi mud pie, maraschino cherries, Brie and potato crisps. “I mean, I don’t know about you, but this is a go-to meal for me at home,” Alex jokes with Ted Allen about the ingredients. Ted tells the judges that they will have to feature chocolate in their desserts, which the cohorts agree won’t be difficult at all.
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, November 12th, 2015
On this week’s episode, our young Chopped Junior contestants got into the holiday swing of things with Thanksgiving-inspired mystery baskets. So with pumpkin pie spice and rainbow carrots in mind, we threw together a fun autumnal hummus that kids can enjoy as a side or main dish for lunch.
by Ricky Smith in Shows, November 10th, 2015
In the new Impossible tournament, Chopped switched up the format and made the baskets even more difficult. In each of the three preliminary rounds, four chefs competed to earn a spot in the finale for a chance to go up against Mr. Impossible himself, Robert Irvine. If one of the chefs beats Robert, the winning chef will go home with $40,000 in prize money. In tonight’s episode, the three winners of the preliminary rounds cooked through an appetizer round, before the remaining two moved on to the entree round. The winner of that round got to go up against Robert in a wild-card round. But who won? Read on to hear from the new champion.
Get the Exclusive Interview with the Chopped: Impossible Winner
by Joseph Erdos in Shows, November 10th, 2015
While it’s almost always difficult to make a cohesive meal from one of the Chopped
mystery baskets, the judges were thankful that this week’s ingredients were all usual suspects for a dessert. After a group of talented military vets left the kitchen, judges Alex Guarnaschelli, Geoffrey Zakarian and Marc Murphy attempted to make a third course out of lemonade, ballpark peanuts, marshmallow cereal treats and peaches on an all-new Chopped After Hours
Alex mentioned that she was glad they left the peanuts in the shell for an extra layer of flavor, but Marc immediately disagreed. “I like the peanuts with the shell, too, but not on Chopped,” he said before pointing out how much time they take to shuck. He ended up attempting to make a sort of brittle out of them, which became the source of a fun game of hide-and-seek between Marc and the others. “Somebody evil has hid Marc’s, hopefully, peanut brittle from him, and now I’m going to join that game and I’m putting it on a high shelf in the pantry,” Ted said.
In the new tournament Chopped: Impossible, 12 chefs entered the competition hoping to make it to the last round to face off against Mr. Impossible himself, Robert Irvine. Until now Robert has judged each of the three preliminary rounds, but on finale day he will compete against one of the three finalists: Marc, James or Emily. The challenge is real, and as we’ve seen so far, the ingredients have been quite impossible, so the final basket will make it anyone’s game.
FN Dish caught up with Robert on the set of the tournament to find out his strategy for the wild-card round. He reveals his competitive strengths and the way he plans to approach the basket. He also talks about how it was judging the chefs and what it’s been like mentoring them to bring out their best in competition.