A Side of Crazy with Your 'Cue — Chopped After Hours
There was no escaping smoky flavors on tonight's episode of Chopped, as each basket contained barbecue-themed ingredients. That was no problem for judges Amanda Freitag, Marc Murphy and Maneet Chauhan as they dug into the entree basket after the competitors left the set. On an all-new Chopped After Hours, they took on some classic 'cue ingredients: North Carolina BBQ sauce, avocado, rainbow chard and spareribs.
"The other barbecue sauce, you're kind of stuck going down one road," Marc says. "Here you can go maybe more on the Asian side or probably maybe Indian direction." Everyone else agrees that they are happy about the choice of sauce. Maneet ends up going in a completely different direction, trying her hand at making a Brazilian stew called feijoada. It includes rice, which she decides to make in the microwave. Ted thinks it's a great time-saver, saying "I don't know why more people don't do that!"
At the 15-minute mark, Ted notices the large amount of fat on the spare ribs Amanda is prepping, and says, "Home cooks have been taught, I think, by the media to fear and hate fat, and chefs will just grab it and start gnawing on it." Amanda agrees, "Seriously — the more fat the merrier!" Maneet adds fat in a different form, deep-frying her avocados in a tempura batter with turmeric. Ted says he's never had it, but tells the other judges, "I think Maneet is giving you guys a run for your money here!" Marc is racing the clock to finish his avocado flan which he decides to cook low and slow in a bain-marie, or water bath, to help it cook evenly. It ends up coming out of the oven looking more like a souffle, but everyone enjoys it.
Watch the video above and Browse behind-the-scenes images for an insider's look at the cooking.
Start a conversation with fellow fans and tell FN Dish in the comments below how you would have approached this basket: What would you make out of North Carolina BBQ sauce, avocado, rainbow chard and spare ribs?
Catch up on past Chopped After Hours episodes by watching all the Web-exclusive battles online.