'Top Chef: Texas' Recap: An Emotional Ending

Padma Lakshmi and Patti LaBelleEmotional eating isn’t typically a good thing, but emotional cooking can be powerful, and that inspired the challenge on tonight’s episode of Top Chef: Texas. Patti LaBelle was in the house as a guest judge, and she gave the chefs their mission: Tell the story of the person who started you on your culinary journey through a tribute dinner. The chefs had two hours in which to prepare it.

They channeled parents, grandparents, and others who had inspired their love of cooking, and they produced some impressive dishes full of memories. There were a few flops, however.


Heather Terhune, Chris Crary, and Grayson Schmitz were called in first as the bottom three. Chris's salmon was overcooked and had too much dill. Grayson's big old slab of meat was gristly and not modernized at all. Heather's beef stroganoff was cooked poorly, and Patti LaBelle wondered if it wasn't Big Foot meat she used. In case you were wondering, that wasn't a compliment.

I can't say I didn't let out a little cheer when they announced it was Heather for whom it would be an emotional ending. She's just been mean and irritating, and it was perfect that she got sent home on an individual challenge when she had no one else to blame. Beverly Kim certainly got some satisfaction from that.

It was also nice to see Beverly in the top three the same week for her braised short ribs, which looked amazing. Also in the top three were Edward Lee for his simple vegetarian dish with rice, mushrooms, and an egg, and Sarah Grueneberg for her sausage-stuffed cabbage leaves. In the end, her grandparents' influence and the homemade sausage she made won her the prize. I'm sure her grandparents are proud.

As for favorites, I still don't have a strong front runner I'm rooting for. Chris Crary is so pretty to look at that I find myself rooting for him to stay, but it's not really for his food. Then it might be a toss-up for me between Sarah, Edward, and Paul ... though even that I'm not feeling with a whole lot of conviction yet.

Were you happy to see Heather go home? Who are you rooting for to win?

Image via Bravo

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