Recently Murray and I saw Chopped at Murray's parents' house. Ever since, we haven't been able to get enough. It's our new favorite show.
Here's a description from the site: Passion and expertise rule the kitchen on the fast-paced new series, Chopped. Hosted by Ted Allen (Food Detectives), the series challenges four up-and-coming chefs to turn a selection of everyday ingredients into an extraordinary three-course meal. After each course, a contestant gets "chopped" until the last man or woman left standing claims victory. Each week, a rotating panel of culinary elite judges including Alex Guarnaschelli, Aaron Sanchez, and Geoffrey Zakarian will decide whose dishes shine the brightest and award the winner $10,000.
What we love most about the show are the surprise ingredients that the contestants must use. Like Mac n Cheese, or even gummy bears. It's really interesting to see the chefs at work, trying to make something good out of awful or mismatched ingredients. The chefs have to present and explain their courses to the judges. Murray particularly appreciates the artistic arrangements of the food on the plates.
Well, tonight I asked Murray to make us a snack. I asked Murray, whose culinary expertise extends to pb&j. He asked if we had ice cream and I told him we didn't. I expected a yogurt and a cheese stick. Or, well, a pb&j. (When we started dating, he invited me over to his house for a romantic dinner and made me Bertolli's.)
I was not expecting this.
Murray came into the room with our snack on a tray. He was also trying to ignite a lighter and set our food on fire.
And he tried and tried and tried to set our food on fire, but to no avail.
So then he had to present his creation to me, the judge.
These are creamy vanilla yogurt parfaits with a smattering of a circular arrangement of blueberry preserves. (His words, not mine.)
He described the dish: "Let me tell you what I've done. On the bottom is a delicate layer of blueberry preserves. This is topped with creamy, low-fat vanilla yogurt. On top of the yogurt is a layer of toasted granola in a slight Batman insignia shape, drizzled with the juice remaining in the cranberries in the fridge, topped with another smattering of blueberry preserves for symmetry, garnished with parsley. Then the dessert was meant to be lightly glazed with rum (but turned out to be rather saturated) which was supposed to light on fire but didn't."
The boozey dessert proved inedible, but at least we gave it a good try. I am afraid that Murray has been chopped.
Says Murray, "I can't believe the judge chopped me, but at least I made it to the dessert round. Whatever. They don't know what they were missing with me. Just wait till next time. I am just going to throw my chef apron in this trash can... whatever."