Tonight's Food Network episode of “Chef Wanted with Anne Burrell” was titled, "Mediterranean Madness." Anne Burrell is a master chef and knows what she is looking for in a chef de cuisine. She came to Tapenade in Los Angeles, Calif. to help chef and owner Ressul Rassallat and his general manager Chuck Craig find a new chef de cuisine so Ressul can be a presence in the front of the restaurant, rather than the kitchen.
Anne has found four well-qualified chefs to try out for the job; Tiffany Friedman from New York City, Suzanne Williams from San Diego, Calif., Victor Sanchez from Long Beach, Calif. and Charbel Adaimy from Los Angeles, Calif.
For their first challenge, they had to put a unique spin on Tapenade Ratatouille using any Mediterranean ingredients. Victor made Italian style using prosciutto and raisins. Tiffany made Brunoise ratatouille with polenta, but Anne told her not to use truffle oil. Charbel made his ratatouille using cinnamon, and Suzanne made hers as a panzanella salad. Suddenly, Charbel cut his finger. The chef who left after this round was Tiffany, who used the truffle oil and nobody liked her dish.
For their next challenge, the chefs had to make their version of a tapenade using one protein. Suzanne made Piquillo tapenade with sautéed whole chicken. Charbel made white anchovy tapenade with branzino. Victor made citrus tapenade with filet mignon. The chef whose interview ended was Charbel.
The two chefs remaining were Suzanne, who will cook tomorrow night and Victor, who will cook the following night.
Suzanne’s menu included appetizers of Warm Green Bean Salad with a Poached Egg and a Slow Cooked Lamb Belly with Israeli Couscous. For the entrees, Seared Scallops with Chorizo Succotash and Braised Chicken Thighs with Broccoli Rabe. Anne suggested a few changes that Suzanne was in agreement with. As the service began, things got a bit crazy, and they ran out of scallops. Chef Ressul helped her out with ahi tuna, and the rest of the night went well.
The next night, Victor presented his pre-shift. His appetizers were Panzanella, Pappardelle with Mushrooms and Pan Seared Scallops. Entrees were Rack of Lamb and Crispy Duck Breast. Dessert was Espresso Panna Cotta. Right off the bat, a customer was vegan, and it threw Victor into a panic. The duck came back because the skin was not crispy, lamb was not cooked properly, and things were falling apart. Finally, the refires were to the customers’ satisfaction.
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