It’s safe to say Bethesda chef and restaurant owner Ashish Alfred has never before had to cook on a balance beam or dig through a slop trough of baked beans for ingredients.
Alfred did both those things as part of Food Network’s Alfred, who’s Indian, got eliminated from the contest on a curry challenge. Judge and chef Jet Tila felt his curry had more of a soupy consistency.
“I should’ve paid a lot more attention to my mom and my dad when making curry growing up,” Alfred said during the show. “But I didn’t, so now I’m the Indian guy getting sent home from Cutthroat Kitchen on a curry.”
It didn’t help that Alfred had to cook the curry on a balance beam, the sabotage meant to represent the importance of balance in any curry dish. Alfred’s ingredients — seared scallops and mussels — turned out well, according to the judge.
But he dropped his first plate of scallops on the floor during the 30-minute cooking challenge, which meant he had to cook a second batch and was short on time.
Alfred was one of the three cooks who advanced from the first round challenge: 15 minutes to cook pigs in a blanket.
“At my restaurant, almost everybody orders pigs in a blanket,” Alfred said. “I expect this challenge to be a walk in the park for me.”
Not so much, thanks to a sabotage that had him and two other chefs digging through a trough of baked beans for their meat ingredients. Alfred came up with some pork, but the mixture turned out too wet to form into hot dogs. He was left with enough to make it past the first elimination.
Each episode of the show matches up four professional chefs from around the country who each get $25,000 in cash.
That cash is used to bid on sabotages, which then can be given to other contestants. The chef remaining after the third cooking challenge gets to keep the money he or she has left.
Each episode is filmed over two or three days in Los Angeles.