Let the Battle Begin ...
The 2010 premiere episode, “The Super Chef Battle” of Iron Chef America was a Sunday night surprise as it featured not only First Lady Michelle Obama, but also the White House organic garden as the secret ingredient, well ingredients. This episode spared no leftovers as four chefs battled it out to create a five course American meal using vegetables, fruits and herbs from the garden. Iron Chef Bobby Flay teamed up with White House private chef Cristeta Comerford, while clog-wearing Iron Chef Mario Batali teamed up with super star chef Emeril “Bam!” Lagasse.
The four chefs returned to The Food Network's Kitchen Stadium in New York, where the teams had chop and dice their way to a win by pleasing the three female judges - chef Nigella Lawson, Olympic gold medal swimmer Natalie Coughlin and actress Jane Seymour.
One person that wasn’t presented during this super star chef battle was the Chairman. This was the first episode for which the Chairman was not present in Kitchen Stadium. He did however appear on video, and presented a wide range of local foods to be used in the battle like oysters, lobsters, turkey, squab and even honey from the White House beehives. Announcer Alton Brown took the reins and the words from the Chairman by leading with the battle cry, “Allez cuisine,” while Kevin Braucht and Ted Allen helped keep things moving from the sidelines.
Each of the two teams created mouth-watering dishes by using everything from infrared grills, blast chillers, convection ovens, deep fryers, cutting boards, and a plethora of other small electrical appliances like blenders and food processors to make sweet potato ravioli (one of Mrs. Obama’s and the President’s favorite ingredients from the garden), creamy cauliflower and cheese, Japanese eggplant and more.
*SPOILER ALERT - in case you recorded this episode and still have not watched it because you are still catching up on Top Chef.
In the end, team Flay and Comeford won the battle (not surprising since this episode was filmed at the White House and did feature the White House executive chef) by five points. The teams were tied on taste, but Flay and Comeford won high marks on plating and originality and also won $25,000, which was donated to City Meals, a New York charity, in the names of the winning team.
To check out highlights from the show, click here - http://www.foodnetwork.com/iron-chef-america/index.html