On tonight's episode of Top Chef Masters, four new chefs take center stage in order to advance on the Bravo cooking reality show for world-renowned chefs. Cindy Pawlcyn, the queen of Napa Valley; Wilo Benet, the king of Puerto Rican cuisine; Ludo Lefebvre, the prodigy from France; and Chicago's authority on Mexican cuisine, Rick Bayless, all slug it out to follow the footsteps of two former episode winners Hubert Keller and Suzanne Tracht.
For this week's episode, the elimination challenge is to create "Street Food" - something very timely because of the increasing popularity of gourmet food trucks around the country. News has it that all four chef-testants opt to make street food inspired by Mexican and Latin cuisine. Pawlcyn, the lone woman, decides to make a menudo soup with tripe. It is also said that Top Chef Masters should expect bickering between young and cocky Lefebvre and Bayless, who is a multiple James Beard winner.
On the last episode of the Top Chef upgrade, Suzanne Tracht of Tracht's, Los Angeles rose above the fray to emerge victorious. She also won the quick fire challenge that included creating an amuse-bouche using ingredients found in a vending machine. Her fried shallot rings with microgreen salad and Dr. Pepper aioli got five stars. As for the elimination challenge, the chef-testants had to prepare a meal inspired by the ABC series Lost, using only fresh and preserved ingredients purchased from a certain list. They weren't allowed to use the pantry.
Tracht, with her risotto with uni, clams & prawns, wild boar with oyster beer sauce, mango corn salad, again won the challenge with 17 stars. She joins the premiere's winner Hubert Keller. The two will return on episode 7 to do battle with tonight's winner and the next episode's.