April 28, 2008

"Top Chef: Chicago" Learns to Improvise

This season of the Bravo Network's Top Chef was filmed here in Chicago, exposing competing chefs from all over the country to all the culinary treats the Windy City has to offer.

dessertThis week's Quickfire Challenge required each chef to make a unique dessert. It may sound simple, but desserts have been the downfall of many contestants in previous seasons. Desserts can be more complex than the entrees that precede them. While chefs can often throw ingredients together to make a meal, using 'a pinch of this' and 'a handful of that,' desserts frequently require exact measurements and recipes. Cooks may 'fix' a main dish by adding another ingredient or two, but a pastry mistake can be difficult or impossible to repair.

Chicago may be known for its pizzas and hearty meals, but it has plenty to offer those with a sweet tooth as well:

In the Elimination Challenge, the contestants attended a performance of the improvisational comedy troupe, The Second City. During the comedy show, the actors asked the audience for suggestions of colors, emotions, and food, creating interesting descriptions like 'orange turned-on asparagus' and 'purple depressed bacon.' The chefs then split into five teams and did their best to create dishes (without the use of electric mixers or food processors) that matched their assigned description.

the second cityThe Second City has been the launching point for several performers' careers. For decades, this comedy team has been entertaining audiences with improv sessions and semi-scripted scenes. For more information on this great piece of theatre, check out my post, The Second City.

Photo credit: ilker yavuz, Second City Press Kit

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

About PlanetEye -  Help/FAQ - Contact Us

Amsterdam - Athens - Atlanta -  Auckland - Bangkok - Barcelona -  Belgrade - Berlin - Boston - Budapest -  Buenos Aires - Cape Town - Chicago
Denver -  Dublin - Edinburgh - Florence - Hanoi -  Hong Kong - Honolulu - Istanbul - Las Vegas -  Lisbon - London - Los Angeles - Madrid -  Manila
Mexico City - Miami - Montpellier -  Montr'al - Munich - New Orleans - New York City -  Paris - Prague - Qu'bec City - Rio de Janeiro -  Rome
San Diego - San Francisco - Seattle -  Singapore - St. Petersburg - Sydney - Tokyo -  Toronto - Vancouver - Venice - Washington