The Taste Season One – Episode Two – The Auditions Continue
Season two of The Taste kicked off in the US this week and showed that it is always good to go for round two. It was much tighter and therefore much more entertaining. My partner who was ambivalent about the show is now looking forward to the next episode. Unfortunately the ratings were not as good has it had been in the previous season. The Nigella scandal having an effect?
It is also interesting watching knowing Brian Malarkey was dumped after season one and to see whether he is annoying or arrogant as the social media sphere says.
However on season one the auditions continued as the coaches continued to try and pick their teams from blind tastings and it was hard to work out whether they were trying to pick professional chefs only or talented amateurs. What we do know is Anthony Bourdain goes for anything with a bit of spice.
First up was Nathaniel a food blogger/server was making his version of shrimp toast which was a butter poached shrimp with curry sauce sitting on polenta. It did not impress the judges and he was out.
Nina Marie made Chilean Sea Bass with Butterscotch and Cilantro Relish and to top it off was some Bulgarian Feta. All the judges said no but Bourdain said it strangely worked for him and put her on his team.
Paul also a professional chef put a lot of ingredients on the spoon there was Chilean Sea Bass and then artichokes wrapped with prosciutto. Both Ludo and Nigella buzzed in for him He said he had to learn from Ludo and picked him.
Sieger who was a bit of a looker from Chicago is a professional chef made watermelon and tuna crudo. It did look good. Bourdain thought it was too restrained in flavour and said no. Ludo said there was no olive oil or no acidity and said no. Maybe they are all looking for the 20 ingredients on a spoon but unfortunately the eye candy fell by the wayside.
A Sofia Vegara look alike made shrimp and Yucca Gratin and tomato relish. Brian Malarkey said the dish does not sing to me and Ludo said it lacked flavour. It was back to cooking for her family for her.
Micah who is a amateur chef gave up his job to be here. Did he think he was going on Masterchef? He made pan seared fillet mignon with parsnip and vanilla mash. When the judges were wondering whether it was a professional or amateur Nigella thought it must be an amateur who had watched a lot of cooking programs. Brian Malarkey decided to put him on his team.
TJ seemed like a nice guy who works with sewerage his aim is to get into the culinary world so he can deal with the top end of the digestive system. He made a Chicken Mole. Before he put the salsa on it, it looked like faeces. The judges hammered him and Bourdain said these are not flavoured I recognised or enjoyed. Has anyone ever eaten a decent chicken mole?
Up to 24 minutes Diane the chef consultant from NYC who said she was there to kick ass and take everyone down. She was making cumin dusted lamb cutlets. Her ego was big. She was sassy, arrogant and very good looking. Ludo gave her glowing compliments but did not pick her as she put too much of the “amazingly good tzatiki” on the dish. Anthony Bourdain was the only one of the judges that picked her. She is going to be good television.
Shaun was a professional chef is decided to cook something he had never cooked before… alway an issue. He made Ahi Tuna with jicama. Bourdain and Nigella declined but Malarkey and Ludo both wanted him. Shaun revealed he normally cooked french cuisine. So it was no surprise he went with Ludo.
Renee was from Chicago and a professional cook but quit her job to come on the show. She made Pistachio Encrusted Halibut with fennel, tomato and pea shoots. They all said no, and Ludo said there it was a perfectly executed dish but there was nothing fancy in it. Ludo did offer her a job as a consolation prize.
Lauren was an amateur cook living in a trailer but she is not stupid she has her boyfriend living next door not living with her.She was making a chocolate cake with a pistachio ganache. With her sad tale of only having 32 dollars in her bank account I was hoping she would get through. Brian and Bourdain both said they liked it but wanted savoury chefs. Ludo thought she was great but did not pick her but fortunately Nigella did. You know Lauren will last all of three seconds once it gets into the next round. It will be interesting to see how far the amateurs get in the competition.