The second episode of Chopped All Stars has Food Network hosts competing for a spot in the Finale. Michael Symon already secured a place in the previous episode. Today the challengers are: Marcela Valladolid who hosts Mexican Made Easy, Jeffrey Saad who hosts United Tastes of America, Aarti Sequeira who was the winner of the Next Food Network Star and hosts Aarti Party, and Keegan Gerhard who was a Food Network Challenge Judge. Keegan Gerhard has never cooked on television before and had to prove himself if he is a judge for other shows.
The judges for this episode were Arron Sanches, Geoffrey Zakarian, and Amanda Freitag. The judging would take place in three rounds: appetizer, entrée, and dessert. Each round is timed, with points awarded for presentation, taste, and creativity. These rounds have four secret ingredients that must be incorporated into a dish.
The appetizer round had the ingredients of pancake mix, strawberry papaya, blue foot mushrooms, and precooked chicken feet. Geoffrey Zakarian made the point that the chicken feet must have the toenails removed. No one wants to eat a toenail but apparently people want to eat chicken feet. Keegan was the only chef who knew to trim the toes. The chef eliminated was Keegan Gerhard for burning his pancake.
The entrée round had the ingredients of maraschino cherries, peas in the pod, parsley root, and tripe. Tripe is the stomach lining of a cow and takes a great deal of time to cook tender. Done correctly it is delicious, but it is certainly a scary ingredient. Aarti decided to make rice with her tripe, and ultimately failed to fully cook it. She was eliminated for this mistake.
The dessert round had the ingredients of ostrich eggs, plantains, dried strawberries, and galangal. The ostrich egg, once cracked, turns into a dozen chicken eggs. Galangal is like turmeric meets ginger and is a common ingredient in South Asian cuisine. Marcela made a churro idea with strawberries and brittle. Jeffrey made a crepe with chocolate nib hash.
In the end, the Chopped winner was Jeffrey for consistent flavors. We will see him again in a few weeks for the Finale.