Welcome back to Top Chef: Just Desserts, where just because Ad Rock has left the building doesn’t mean that the Beastie Boys references have to stop. Why waste such gold material as: “Matthew took home the Brass Monkey” or “The judges called ‘Hey laaadies’ for the bottom three” or “while Rebecca was told to pass the mic.” I mean, could you have lived a happy and complete life without those final reminders that the Beastie Boys have sunk to the reality TV depths? Maybe Mike D will show up on Dancing with the Stars! MCA on Project Runway! And now we have these words coming out of Gail’s mouth to remind us. Could we have these dark thoughts without hearing those words? Doesn’t matter ’cause now you will never know. You can’t unhear that flow. You’re doomed. Let’s just get on with it.
Where were we (aside from contemplating our mortality, obviously)? Oh right: The producers are still trying to make some drama happen by editing together clips of Sally and the boys laughing with other clips of Katzie packing alone and then a disembodied voice saying, “Sally thinks she’s better than the girls.” Surely the dramatic tension has you on the edge of your Barcalounger. But you’re only going to get a minute of that drama, because we have a challenge to get to. Gail has dragged Mark Israel out of his Doughnut Plant in New York all the way to Los Angeles to give the cheftestants their big doughnut challenge. The Quickfire Challenge chyron says, “Create the Perfect Doughnut,” which is a pretty high bar, but also totally misleading because Gail actually says that they want a creative doughnut served up with a cup of Joe. There’s a pretty big difference between “perfect” and “creative.” I mean, they’re not mutually exclusive, but it’s like trying to compare a Krispy Kreme to a black sesame glazed cake doughnut (Mark Israel knows what I’m talking about). Just because it can be done doesn’t mean it should be. Whatever, shut up, eat a goddamn doughnut. Gail adds that there will be no immunity for the challenge, or any challenge going forward. However, the winning doughnut will get $10,000 to spend on extra glaze or diamond sprinkles or something. Then Judge Johnny Iuzzini walks in and while the dum dum dum DUM dum dum dum DUM music of doom isn’t actually playing, it is heavily implied. Sure enough, Johnny comes in and announces that the creator of their least favorite doughnut will be sent home. No word on what will happen to the doughnut. Everyone gasps and wails for a while and then sets about making the Best Doughnut Ever (or at least one that won’t upstage the guest judge). Orlando is making banana beignets, which sound risky, but Carlos is talking about his gangland childhood where pastry saved his life so it seems likely he could go home. As The Police always says, pastry can save your life, or it can break your heart. Sally is making doughnut sticks, which is …nothing. Shut up, Sally. When time is up, Katzie makes the sign of the cross and some small talk with Mark Israel, “I like doughnuts.” (Shut up, Katzie.)
She offers a cocoa beignet with date ganache. Johnny stares at it for a minute and the is all, “Hmm. This looks like a plated dessert. Not what I’d choose to do with a doughnut.” Shut up and eat the damn doughnut, Johnny! If girlfriend wants to put her doughnut on a plate who cares? It’s a free country and if you don’t like it why don’t you go flip through your world atlas and find a nice country that stones people for putting doughnuts on plates. Peru maybe? I don’t know, because I’ve never given a hoot if my doughnut is on a plate. Orlando can’t help but pipe up that he thinks Katzie needs to go home for giving the judges fancy food when they wanted down home cooking or something. Shut it, Orlando, you served a hot dry root beer float so no one’s talking to you. Carlos serves an orange and lemon bomboloni with passion fruit cream. What is it with these chefs and passion fruit? Every other dish has passion fruit on it. Is this show secretly sponsored by the Passion fruit Council? Orlando made a spiced banana beignet with cardamom, but he never should have mentioned the cardamom, because it doesn’t taste enough like cardamom and Johnny cocks an eyebrow in his general direction. Megan made a cake doughnut with a honey cardamom glaze, but then tragedy strikes: Glaze malfunction! Judge Johnny’s doughnut stuck to his plate due to overly ambitious glaze. On the bright side you can taste the cardamom. Chris made a churro with raspberry jam. Sally made her doughnut sticks with an espresso glaze and caramelized cashews. The judges are very impressed with the stick shape as it allows for easy dipping. Have they just been shoving whole round doughnuts into their coffee cups for years? Are they morons? Have they never heard of maple bars? Matthew’s doughnut is dry and his new life partner, Chris, is worried about him getting sent home.