My imaginary boyfriend Anthony Bourdain gives his team a pep talk over a bucket of chicken. On the budding romance between Real Cook Lee and Vegan Chef Cassandra, he clarifies that he “doesn’t care what [Lee] does with his penis so long as he doesn’t stick it in the soup.” Mmm…penis soup….

Team Challenge

The theme this week is “guilty pleasures,” and the guest judge is Aaron Sanchez. Tony is an “egg slut,” so he tasks his kitchen to make something decadent with eggs, Marcus’s team is cooking chicken wings, Ludo’s guilty pleasure is fat so his team will be making a foie gras dish (which Cassandra calls “absolutely disgusting), and Nigella asks her lonely two chefs to make something sweet.

Anthony Bourdain

Tony puts up Dana’s egg dish, Ludo selects Jeff’s dish yet again, Nigella has no choice since one of her cooks went rogue so she put up a goopy spoon of pudding, and Marcus hones in on Sarah’s spoonful of breakfast.

Aaron Sanchez dives into the first spoon which is Jeff’s foie gras street taco for Ludo’s team. Next is Dana’s buttermilk biscuit with Iberico ham and quail egg for Tony’s team. Nigella’s spoonful comes from Jacqueline and it is a chocolate pot de crème. Sarah’s cheddar bay biscuit with bacon jam and fried egg represents for Marcus’s team. Aaron gives the win to Ludo’s kitchen, which means Jeff now has three wins in a row. Wow. So Ludo’s team gets the help of Aaron Sanchez in the individual challenge. Nigella’s team is second place, and third goes to Bourdain, so Marcus is about to lose a cook.

Marcus sends home the second-most annoying cook on the show, Audrey, because she refuses to cook good food but instead insists on cooking “non-naughty” food. In case it is unclear, the most annoying cook on the show is Cassandra The Vegan.

Individual Challenge

Aaron Sanchez joins Ludo’s team and guides the team to guilt-laden foods. Marina isn’t really getting the guilty party of “guilty pleasure” and decides to make spring rolls. Oh! But with scallops! Live life on the edge, Marina. The rest of the team decides to make gloppy, gooey foods while all of the other cooks grouse in the break room.

With one hour to cook, Nigella’s tiny team makes beer braised pork belly (Jacqueline) and oyster Rockefeller (Crystal). Aaron had given Louise advice about a jalapeno popper, but for some reason she switched it up to a chowder once she got into the kitchen. Cassandra’s working on a lobster roll, and Jeff is making sausage tortellini with cream sauce, and Marina is stuck on her spring roll.

For Marcus’s steam, Shehu is making a simple burger, Sarah is working on oyster gratin, and Don stirs up paella in just one hour (yikes!). Tony’s team is doing pretty well with Shellie’s chicken fried lobster, Lee’s bacon mac and cheese, Brad’s vanilla butter poached lobster, and Dana’s scallop stuffed with mushroom and, oh no! Truffle oil! Why don’t you just stab my imaginary boyfriend Anthony Bourdain in the heart.

Oh har! If you want to cook a lobster, you first have to stab it in the head until it’s dead dead dead! Rather than let her rot in her own lobster pot, Jeff takes pity on the poor, pitiful woman and kills it for her. But that clarified butter is on her hands.

Let the tasting begin! Louise’s chowder is mediocre at best. Brad’s poached lobster turns some of the chefs off with the vanilla flavor. Jeff’s creamy sausage pasta pleases Ludo and grosses out Nigella. Dana’s stuffed scallop slathered in truffle oil pisses everyone off. Shehu’s pork belly burger has curb appeal and yum despite the meat being a tad dry. Cassandra’s lobster roll is called “one of the best thing I eat in this competition.” Oh,whatever. Sarah’s potato gives Tony a Jersey Shore vibe “without the chlamydia.” Crystal serves a plate of chocolate truffle and it hits a happy place with the judges. Jacquelyn’s pork belly confuses the judges. Don’s paella pleases only Marcus. Shellie’s chicken friend lobster is crazy enough to work, but is still middling. Maria’s spring roll is so not a guilty pleasure that the judges don’t even know what to do about the dish. Lee’s fried chicken in bacon mac and cheese sings to Tony, “Take me home and treat me bad.” Okay, if you say so….

The best and worst are:

Team Marcus The Taste

Tony’s Best: Lee (Tony’s Team)

Marcus’s Best: Lee (see above)

Nigella Best: Shehu (Marcus’s Team)

Ludo Best: Jeff (Ludo’s Team)

Tony’s Worst: Dana (Tony’s Team)

Marcus’s Worst: Marina (Ludo’s Team)

Nigella’s Worst: Don (Marcus’s Team)

Ludo’s Worst: Don (Marcus’s Team)

Tony is horrified at Dana’s dish. “Truffle oil is not a food.” Take those words to the bank, kids. Don’s paella was disappointingly dry and, like Marina’s spring rolls, not-so guilty. Just send Dana home for her crime against humanity. Dana is safe because her technique of dribbling truffle oil all over those helpless scallops was good. “Marina, what happened to you?” “Don, that was not a paella.” Oh no, don’t do it! They did it. Don is going home. Dammit! He’s too adorable to go ho—did he just ask Nigella out on a date? He did. Don is just the best.

Follow The Taste season 2 on Twitter: @TheTasteABC/ #TheTaste


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images via ABC