Top Moments of Chopped After Hours: Missing a Beet

Get an insider's look at Chopped judges Aarón Sánchez, Marc Murphy and Chris Santos as they take on an entree basket from the show.

Tables Turned

When three chefs on Chopped tried their hands at creating entrees with pinto beans, sofrito, striped bass and coconut-chocolate bars, judges Aarón Sánchez, Marc Murphy and Chris Santos found that their fish lacked the necessary crispiness and that the overall flavor of spices was overpowering. Now it's the judges' turn to see if they can make better meals with those ingredients in the same amount of time.

Louisiana Specialty

Deviating from his traditional Mexican culinary point of view, Aarón set off to make a Louisiana-inspired fish and grits dish with garlic and chiles. "We're getting to see that other side of you," host Alex Guarnaschelli told Aarón. "You don't just have Mexican cuisine under your belt, but you also have that New Orleans foundation that's so dear to your heart."

Attempting the Impossible

Although he only has 30 minutes to cook, Marc ambitiously decides to make a rustic French stew: cassoulet. It "takes hours and hours if not days to cook," Alex explains. "The perfect dish to try and make in just 30 minutes," she adds sarcastically.

Tastes of Thailand

"It reads like a Latin basket," Chris notes, "but I think that that's not what Chopped is about; it's about bringing it in a different direction." He plans to embrace the coconut in the candy bar by making a Thai-inspired soup with lemon grass and ginger.

Friendly Competition

The guys may not have much time to spare during cooking, but they manage to visit each other's stations for a few moments of playful banter and lighthearted joking about each other's progress so far.

Snack Time

Marc treats himself to a last-minute sample of his cassoulet before time is called, but he's not entirely pleased with what he tastes. "I was kind of hoping it was going to work, but I think the bacon got a little bit tough," he explains. As the seconds tick away, he begins to pick out chunks of bacon in a final effort to improve the texture of his dish without sacrificing flavor.

Following the Rules

With just seconds to spare, the judges manage to complete their dishes, and while there's no formal judgment of their offerings, the group gathers for a casual tasting. Each meal proves to be worthy of the Chopped kitchen, but Alex wonders whether her colleagues have properly utilized the mystery basket, as each has used merely a select element of the candy bar, not the bar as a whole. "Use a little or a lot," Marc reminds her. "I heard Ted say it before."

Watch More Chopped After Hours

Catch up on previous After Hours Web-exclusive videos, then visit Food Network's Chopped page for more insider coverage of the show.

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