11/12/2012 02:53:00 PM

Next Iron Chef Redemption Episode 2: "Don't Give That Dude a Taco"

Image via Food Network
Next Iron Chef: Redemption aired its second episode last night which kicked off with the remaining nine chefs approaching Nickel Diner in downtown LA and speculating about the challenge ahead. Nate  Appleman loves diner food so he's psyched. Marcel has been 'preparing his whole life' for this competition so because of that he feels confident that he'll take it. Sidenote: what is up with Duskie Estes' constant pigtails? It's her thing, we get it, but they're just certainly not helping her scare off any competitors. Alex G. won last week's challenge so she gets to pick teams of three and assign each a 'diner food' to elevate. Naturally the diner foods chosen are falafel, banh mi and tacos - because clearly every food truck diner serves those.

Alex has to be strategic about who she puts on her team and which dish she assigns to each chef. Straight out of the gate, she knows not to give Nate tacos because, duh, he works for Chipotle. She notes that he knows enough "not to give that dude a taco" and instead awards tacos to herself, Spike Mendelsohn and Duskie Estes. Duskie remarks that Alex believes that her and Spike are the weakest (which is kinda true) and that's why she picks them (also kinda true). She assigns Amanda F., Jehangir Mehta and Marcel falafel and the rest banh mi. Banh mi is tough to elevate as Nate points out as it's "already a fusion dish."

There are some mishaps during preparation, as per usj. Elizabeth Falkner's pork doesn't cook so she has to go with plan B for her banh mi ravioli: turn the chicken livers into a sauce. Nate's broth is too salty. Marcel doesn't have enough chickpeas. CHAOS. Meanwhile the sinister Jehangir Mehta allegedly messes with Marcel's stove temperatures which causes Spike to point out that he is "already playing dirty." Alex G. thinks that she may have given Amanda Freitag a tough assignment with falafel but she's confident she can rock it because she "loves falafel" and "cooks with tons of Mediterranean flair."

Time for judgment - Simon Majumdar who seems to be the Simon Cowell of the group hates on Spike Mendelsohn's take on tacos by noting that, "they are looking for The Next Iron Chef, not the next home dinner party cook." Ouch. Elizabeth Falkner thinks the judges are really rude and stands by her dish. She is "not ok" with losing. Mehta pulls out the win for his falafel and the women, save for Alex G. are all in the bottom three and now have to cook in the Secret Ingredient Showdown which forces them to use white bread as the star ingredient. Falkner is totes PO'd and vows to pull it out with an amazing monte cristo sandwich and french toast ice cream. (Ice cream is her secret weapon.) All three chefs  barely finish and Alex notes that Duskie seems "flustered" which is the kiss of death. Elizabeth wins with what the judges call "one of the top five dishes ever served on Next Iron Chef" and Duskie goes home because her dish wasn't "bready" enough. Until next week, folks.




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