The Hotplate…Oh la la

I half watched this when it was on the other night because it was on tv while I was out for dinner, so I only caught bits of it, but I caught up watching it on the weekend.

We’re off to Phillippe and Pascal’s restaurant for this episode and straight up Christina and Tania say they’re nervous, well Phillippe’s had 45 years experience and has owned Chez Pascal for 29 years and of course does French provincial food.

Bless him Phillippe gets into the restaurant and puts on a chef’s hat, Pascal’s worried about his t-shirt though, he doesn’t want to get it dirty, honestly Nols would be happy if that happened.  Phillippe gets on with making a mousse for a roulade, Pascal peers onions very very slowly, no rush there mate.

Scott and Tom check out the menu and Tom thinks it’s stereotypically French, but worries if it is too old school, Scott wants it to be classic but modernised.  The menu has snails and brains and Scott worries they’ll polarise the other, this might be fun if they order them…next thing you know Phillippe’s got Pascal preparing the lamb’s brains.

Oh dear, Phillippe’s managed to get water into the salmon roulade bag while it is cooking, which he says hasn’t happened the other 1,000 times he’s made it and he’s hoping they won’t order it, that means I bet they will order it.

Pascal gets the table set and we get a Liam comment about being OCD on cutlery.  Phillippe meanwhile is stressing about not having a drink and pours a wine for himself, might as well be relaxed.

Scott and Tom look at the dessert menu, but Scott’s worried when it says not served with cream or ice-cream.  Tom think’s that’s two fingers up to modern food.  Phillippe is getting the crepe ready and Pascal asks what he’ll say if people as for cream or ice-cream, “leave, the door is there, have the crepe how it is” says Phillippe oh bless him.

Scott and Tom stroll down the street, Tom complete with a suit and tie and pink socks and Pascal meets them at the door, strange how Pascal was wearing his t-shirt with 6 seconds to go, but meets the judges with a new shirt on.  Scott say the restaurant looks like a step back in time to Paris in the 60’s.  Tom thinks it looks old school, but not kitsch.  The others arrive with a wine bottle each and Christina’s worried that it’s next door to a funeral parlour.  Poor Vanessa is underwhelmed with how outdated it looks and Aron thinks the rest of the night will be drab.  The ladies and Liam all think Pascal is a very sexy maître de.  Conrad’s worried the carpet is dirty and doesn’t like carpet in a restaurant, oh honey deal with it.  Liam worries about skirting boards, honey, honey, honey, you both need to deal with it.

They look at the menu and everyone notices the snails, the brains and the no cream or ice-cream line, oh well it’s not your restaurant guys so suck it up and get on with it.  The judges order the salmon roulade and lambs’ brains for entrée.  For main they order duck breast with mandarin liqueur and rack of lamb and for dessert they order chocolate pudding and crepe Normande and Scott asks for ice-cream and Phillippe’s not overly happy.

Pascal dries off the brains, flour them and fries them in oil and butter.  Poor Nols is stressing about eating brains.  I can honestly say I’ve had them before and I remember them not having much flavour, mind you they were cows’ brains and were crumbed and fried.  Phillippe goes to open the roulade, it feels okay when he touches it, but they have to cut it and pray that it’s set, but he thinks it looks beautiful.  The roulade sits on a bed of horseradish sauce.  The brains is served with the brains on the plate and garlic butter sauce over the top.

They serve the entrée and poor Nols is ready to vomit.  Conrad and Liam aren’t keen with any of the presentation, they wanted kapow and it took a backseat according to Conrad and no seat according to Liam, just eat the damn food boys.  Nols at least tries a bit of the brains, but one mouthful is all she can manage.  Tania manages an even tinier mouthful.  Eli and Maria love the entrees and Christina wants to know if they ate the same entrees as she did, because the entrées don’t suit Christina’s palate.  Phillippe is shocked that most people left most of the brains on the plate.  Scott talks about the lambs’ brains and says the dish was spot on, even if it wasn’t to everybody’s taste, but the presentation is a bit old school.  Tom likes the mousse, but wanted more horseradish and says that Phillippe’s technique is magnificent.

They get on with the lamb and duck and Phillippe says he’s serving the lamb medium rare, too bad if that’s not how you like it.  But then Nols says that she wants it well done, oh dear honey you’re in trouble.  Phillippe’s cooking everything in lot of butter and Pascal asks why, well butter makes everything better of course…ask a silly question get a silly answer Pascal.  Of course he’s cooking the vegies in butter as well.  Plus he’s making sauce for both dishes, but oh dear, one of them is about to boil over, just as he says you have to be very careful when making sauces as they can over boil.  The sauce has over-reduced, so is too sweet and Phillippe goes to save it and starts yelling out in the kitchen and the others are a tad worried because they can hear him.

They take mains out to the others, they’re both served with 1 potato, a few carrots and a few beans.  Phillippe tells Nols that this time he’ll make sure she’ll eat and she asks if it’s well done and he cracks up laughing, sorry Nols it’s not well done and he won’t cook it well done.  Conrad loves how the lamb is cooked.  Christina and Tania both love the sauces.  Poor Nols thinks the lamb is too pink for her, but Christina will love it.  Liam is all OCD about the number of beans, all because he only got three beans and others got 5 or 6, it’s a damn bean, don’t stress about it mate.  Phillippe and Pascal come out and Tom talks about the duck, he was worried that it wouldn’t work with it being mandarin, but he loved the sauce and babbles on about it.  Scott talks about the lamb and he’s not keen that the same vegies were served with both dishes, but the lamb was spot on it and gives him goose bumps and the sauce was perfect.  Then he says he’s looking forward to his crepe with ice-cream and Phillippe can only laugh.

The puddings are ready to be steamed and Pascal asks about ice-cream, but Phillippe says he doesn’t have any ice-cream in the restaurant, “if Scott wants ice-cream he can walk down the street and buy it”…oh dear Scott you’re definitely not getting ice-cream.  The crepes are ready, but Pascal’s worried about the chocolate pudding, he thinks they don’t looks right, but Phillippe says they’re ready because it’s a chocolate fondant and Phillippe and Pascal keep arguing over it until Pascal leaves the kitchen.      They left them for a while then put them on the plate and Phillippe’s happy as he was right and not Pascal.  I’ll tell you though I’d want some cream or ice-cream with the crepe.

They take out the dessert and Pascal says the crepe Normande is never served with cream or ice-cream, Phillippe says that’s what he was told when taught how to make it 40 years ago.  Liam’s giving them points for boring looking meals as all of them have looked boring, honestly I can’t want to see how exciting your cooking looks!!

Oh dear the fondant is too strong for Christina’s palate…oh love.  Then again Liam thought it was too intense as well, and he’s stressing over the cutlery, focus on the food honey.

Scott talks about the crepe, he says it was sensational but wanted ice-cream.  Tom says the fonday was very chocolatey but delicious.

Scoring time…Conrad and Liam…Liam says he wouldn’t pay to go there and would only go if it was an 80’s theme night and he was wearing his Jason Donovan gear…honey I’m concerned that you own Jason Donovan gear.  They score them 5/10.  Lozz and Nols give them 6/10.  Eli and Maria score them 6/10.  Christina and Tania give them 5/10.  Aron and Vanessa score them 4/10.  They got 26/50 from the other teams.

Scott scores them 7/10 for the food and 8/10 for the experience.  Tom scores them 7/10 for the food and 6/10 for the experience.  Their total score is 54/90 putting them on top of the leader board after 2 nights of cooking.

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