Previously on Hell’s Kitchen, there was some bad blood between Hassan and Dannie, and all of the chefs royally screwed up Family Night especially Kevin who was kicked out mid-service, permanently. The Blue Team also lost Alan, which I personally think was a misstep. Manda has been reassigned to the Blue Team, so hopefully she can get them into shape.

Right after elimination, Jackie thinks Ashley is acting a little two-faced, mentioning the fact that Ashley has fake boobs while hurling insults. “You can never run a kitchen, honey. Never in a million years,” Jackie insults. And since she’s Jackie, she doesn’t know when to call it quits with the harsh words. Manda reiterates that she’s so thankful she’s no longer on the Red Team anymore.

Jackie’s words lead Ashley to tears, and a little compassion from Jared over on the Blue Team, who tells her that he’ll always be there for her. Is a romance blooming, perhaps?

Ingredients Ala Cart

The chefs get an early morning wake-up call the next day, and meet Gordon Ramsay at the local market. “There’s nothing more inspiring than fresh ingredients, right?” Ramsay says. Each team will be gathering six ingredients, but not in the market itself — that’d be too easy. Instead, they’ll be running around finding carts. Each cart has a letter on it, and the chefs need to spell out the ingredients they wish to use. Let’s hope we have some spelling champs in the mix.

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Manda says that the Blue Team decided on salmon, so they scramble to find the correct carts. The Red Team will be using halibut, and scramble to find an S-cart to complete their ingredients. They hesitate, and take one from the row of carts that spell out “BEETS,” meaning that they’ll only have one beet to work with this afternoon. Jackie was so tired that she said she “sweated two sizes down.” Not a visual anyone wants to imagine.

“I would love you all to have some creative freedom,” Ramsay says after the carts have been assembled. He’s allowing each team one minute to run inside the store and find one ingredient that’ll truly set their dishes apart. Each chef chooses something different, since they’ll each be making different dishes, using the same ingredients as the team has chosen. Manda chooses tomatoes, which Jared finds to be a little strange. Out of everything she could have chosen, she went with tomatoes?

Jackie’s special ingredient is orange, which might put an interesting spin on the team’s halibut. Eddie uses white wine for his salmon dish. 

Judging The Fish Dishes

Each dish will be judged by Ramsay on a scale of one to five. The team with the most points at the end will win the challenge.

Chad makes a poached salmon with a puree, which Ramsay thinks is delicious. Unfortunately, his rice is a little under-cooked, giving Chad a three. “Stupid, stupid mistake,” Chad laments. 

Eddie is next, and he made a pan-seared salmon, and gets a four. Frank makes a similar dish with a cream sauce, and gets a three. Jared’s salmon is cooked beautifully, but gets a three based on plain rice. Manda’s dish is a pan-seared salmon with a tomato fennel salad. “That’s a very solid four,” Ramsay says. The guys are happy that her debut dish scored big numbers. So far, the Blue Team has 17 points, and there’s one dish left: Joe’s.

Joe makes a pan-seared salmon, which Ramsay thinks is a bit simple. “But it delivers,” Ramsay exclaims. Joe earned himself a five, giving the Blue Team a total of 22 points. How will the Red Team do?

Jackie is up first, and Ramsay says that her plating looks like a dog chewed it. “Where is the other piece of halibut?” Ramsay questions. Jackie says she cut the end off her halibut. Ramsay gives her a two out of five, and tells her to piss off. 

Ariel’s dish saves the moment, scoring five out of five. Hassan makes a halibut and andoullie sausage hash. Ramsay is a little disappointed, giving him a three out of five. Kristin’s dish gets a four.

Dannie has a fish topped with apricot chutney, and gets a three out of five — Ramsay thinks her dish is too sweet. Ashley is last, and has a pan-seared halibut with a sweet curry sauce. She gets a five out of five, which ties the score up between the men and woman.

Which Team Wins?

“I’m going to break the tie with the best dish overall,” Ramsay says. It’s Joe versus both Ariel and Ashley. “The dish of the day belongs to Ashley,” Ramsay decides. Way to go, Red Team!

So, what do they win? Loops and barrel rolls! The team will be soaring through the air in a stunt plane. That sounds like a nightmare to me, even though Gordon Ramsay claims it’s a “once in a lifetime” opportunity. The Blue Team needs to prepare some ingredients for sangria, which sounds not terrible. I think I’d rather do the punishment than the reward, honestly.

Before the girls set out, Ashley tells Jackie that she doesn’t hate her and wants Jackie to know that if they die on this plane, she didn’t want there to have been animosity beforehand. Way to be an adult, Ashley.

“I felt like I was going to cry, and puke, and laugh at the same time,” Ashley says about the experience.

Back in the kitchen, the Blue Team is de-coring fruit and cracking open coconuts. “These grapes are a bitch!” Manda says about her peeled grape experience. 

Dinner Service

It’s almost time for dinner service, and Ariel and Jackie fight about measuring. Jackie thinks that it’s ridiculous that Ariel can’t eye a cup. “I’m not doing it by eye, I follow recipes,” Ariel retorts.

Ramsay gives Ariel and Hassan some leadership mini-pep talks before opening Hell’s Kitchen. Once again, they’re fully booked with diners including Thomas Ian Nichols, famous for American Pie!

Kristin and Joe will be serving an octopus dish table-side tonight. Hassan is on the fish station, and he’s feeling overly confident — which means that something will probably go terribly wrong.

And I was right! Hassan doesn’t time his lobster correctly, and Ramsay yells about how Hassan is sweating into the dish. 

Ramsay reminds Jared to communicate with his team about timing, and Jared’s response is to respond back in French. Frank says that if that kind of attitude happened in Brooklyn, it’d lead to a beating. Frank scares me.

Ariel and Hassan are communicating well regarding their risotto, and Ramsay thinks they’re (finally) off to a good stat. “I was born a beast,” Ariel responds.

In the dining hall, Joe gets a little lost, unsure of where his tables are. “Regardless of what’s going on in my head, or in the kitchen, I’m always a people person!” Joe says, talking to the diners unnecessarily. “Joe, move your ass!” Ramsay yells.

Ramsay calls Joe back in the kitchen, and notes the dirt on his jacket. “You’re dirty, you’re slow… get out of here!” Ramsay exclaims. Wow — That was quick. I don’t know if I’ve ever seen someone get kicked out when they weren’t even in the kitchen. 

Wait, no. The edit was misleading. Ramsay only wants Joe to change his chef jacket. Phew. 

A Problem With Garnishes

Back in the Red Kitchen, Jackie refuses to communicate with her team about her timing with the garnishes. It causes Dannie to overcook her strip steak, which she’s a little peeved about. 

Eddie is also a little slow with his garnishes, causing Ramsay to scream at both Eddie and Frank about overcooked arctic char. 

Dannie and Jackie are still in need of help, with Jackie being slightly overwhelmed. Kristin offers to help out, but the plates brought up are extremely underwhelming. “I have one half portion of fries,” Ramsay yells. “There’s no momentum!”

Chad claims that he used to work in Michelin-rated restaurants before, so the guys are obviously looking to him for a victory. Right after he says that, he sends up some poorly cooked chicken. As a punishment, Ramsay sits the entire Blue Team down in the dining room, asking them if they really want to eat raw chicken. 

Ramsay ends his tirade with “get a grip!” and then screams in Chad’s face individually to inspire him to communicate about timing. 

Luckily, both teams are at the last of their entrees. They might actually finish dinner service this week!

At the end, Ramsay mentions how both kitchens got an amazing start, but both of them eventually nosedived. He mentions two chefs in particular that had a strong performance — Ariel and Jared. That said, both teams will be nominating team members tonight. It seems as if Ariel and Jared will have the final say.

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Ariel And Jared Deliberate

Jared thinks that Eddie was weak, and Eddie retorts that he thinks he’s getting better. Ariel talks to Jackie and says that while they’re personally close, there’s no room in the kitchen for Jackie’s ego. Ariel compares herself to a bulldog, and immediately hates Ariel based on being called out.

The technique Jared uses for the other team members is borderline hilarious, calling them into a room one-on-one to state their case. With somber music playing in the background, the editors of Hell’s Kitchen definitely made light of a tense situation.

It’s way less humorous for the Red Team. When Kristin says that Ariel constantly walks around like she has a crown on her head, Ariel confessed that of course she does — she’s a strong black woman, as well as a power player in the kitchen.

Who’s Going Home?

In front of Ramsay, Ariel and Jared nominate their team members for elimination. Ariel chooses Jackie first, since she has an ego and an attitude. The second nominee is Kristin, based on her french fry portions during dinner service. Jared nominates Eddie based on his garnish failures, and Joe, since he’s “a sloppy mess.”

Ramsay calls all four forward, and asks them to plead their case. Eddie thinks he still has yet to show his chops to Ramsay, and Joe thinks he has much more to prove. Jackie thinks she’s a natural leader with a strong voice, and Kristin … immediately gets back in line. Ramsay obviously wasn’t cool with her nomination. Joe is also asked to get back in line, since obviously a stained jacket is meaningless next to raw food.

He chooses Eddie to go, and as per usual, Eddie says that the Blue Team will “crumble without him.”

“Eddie couldn’t lead, and he certainly couldn’t follow,” Ramsay concludes. 

Hell’s Kitchen airs on Wednesdays at 9pm on FOX.

(Image courtesy of FOX)

Karen Belz

Contributing Writer, BuddyTV