'MasterChef' Season 5 top 17 compete recap

By Elizabeth Sudlow,

Last night’s episode of Masterchef had a little bit of everything: betrayal, romance and a fight between the young and the restless.

Opening up with the top 17 chefs walking along a beach in Southern California where they meet the judges at the makeshift wedding ceremony for the day. The judges announce that the team challenge for the day will be to cater a wedding of 120 guests where the two teams are to come up with their own menu based on the two things the bridge and groom want: a scallop appetizer and a sea bass entrée. Considering their ceremony and reception is on the water, they are looking for upscale ocean fare.

Following last weeks winners of the pressure test, Leslie and Francis L were named team captains and got to choose between the remaining chefs for their team. The red team was made up of Leslie, Christian, Francis B, Tyler, Daniel, Christine, Ahran and Jordan. The blue team was made up of Francis L, Willie, Courtney, Cutter, Victoria, Elizabeth, Dan, Elise and Jaimee.

The two teams had two hours and a lot can happen in two hours. Leslie quickly lost control of his team in his attempt to be more of an open captain and listen to everyone opinions. A fatal flaw Ahran had predicted from the moment she was called onto his team and he mispronounced his name. After failing to truly create a concrete menu and Ramsey’s disapproval, Daniel appoints Francis B as the new captain and the red team was off and running. On the blue team, Francis L has a vision and makes sure to execute it with his teammates behind him.

Following the two hours the teams first sent out their appetizer for the bride and groom. The blue team served seared scallops with arugula salad, watermelon radish and a pineapple sauce while the red team created seared scallops with pea and avocado puree and a mango salad. When Judge Joe went to ask the newlyweds their opinions, they were split proving the both dishes were excellent.

For the entrée portion the red team went with a seared sea bass with spicy broccolini, heirloom tomato and cucumber salad and the blue team served a seared sea bass with purple cauliflower puree, white asparagus and lemon grass beurre blanc. Again the newlyweds were split but hey at least they have good taste.

It appeared that everything was going well until the red team approached their last four dishes and realized two portions of sea bass were missing. The possible culprit was Tyler as Christian had spent a few moments throughout the service to criticize him for over tasting the food but nothing was ever confirmed. Instead, the chefs were forced to slice two sea bass in half and serve a smaller portion but everyone did get to eat and considering Gordon Ramsey’s shows history, which is impressive in itself.

In the end the blue team won causing tensions to run high while the red team cleaned the kitchens. This is where the grand battle occurred as Leslie voiced a slightly sensitive apology that he wasn’t “what everyone wanted” and Ahran called him out on it. The oldest, Leslie 56, and the youngest, Ahran 18, chefs got into a large feud over sensitivity, politeness and in general behavior. Leslie shouted a very father-like, “You’re just a teenager! This is how you act!” before the other chefs sent him off on a walk as one chef said, if Leslie is supposed to be the oldest and thus, most mature, naturally he should act like it.

But Leslie’s bad day did not end there as a result of losing the challenge, his team was sent into a pressure test for elimination and at first, it seems he may have gained an opportunity to help himself out when the judges tell him he can choose the three people who will have to cook in the challenge. The rest of the chefs get to relax and watch while being thankful for Leslie’s mercy. With his evil smile and revenge he sets up Christian, Daniel and Ahran as he claims they were the three useless on the team and whether it was out of spite or honesty, no one cared. Because then Ramsey dropped the bomb that it was not really his decision but the judges as they chose Leslie, Jordan and Francis B. Leslie, for his awful behavior as a captain, Jordan, for his dazed look halfway through the service and Francis B, for taking over the team and then failing.

In the pressure test the three men were asked to cook a perfect medium rare steak and crisp frits. The judges were especially looking for a perfect season, sear and frits. Throughout the test the chefs up in the balcony gave Francis B as much help and advice as possible in hopes of eliminating Leslie. It appears the entire kitchen as turned on him aside from Willie, who admits the two have some kind of understanding which keeps their relationship alive.

After the 90 minutes, the judges assessed each steak and determined that Leslie’s steak was perfect but the fries could have been a lot better. In Jordan’s case, his steak was not medium rare but it remained delicious alongside having well-seasoned fries. Francis B’s steak was last and also not medium rare yet seasoned nicely with his fries also being very well done. Sadly the terror of Leslie did not end as his perfect medium rare automatically saved from elimination causing Jordan to be the chef to go home.

But whom do people want out of the kitchen more… Leslie or Courtney? That we will have to wait and see.

image courtesy of INFevents.com

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