Good Ol’ Comfort Food…

I know that food isn’t love, but sometimes there’s a reason why comfort food is that…comfort food.

wpid-img_20150916_184356675.jpgI’ve had a lot of friends who’ve been having a hard time lately. Life gets you down, relationships don’t work out and sometimes work is too much. Sometimes life is too much. It’s hard to get out of bed, it’s hard to socialize, sometimes just existing has its issues…and its hard to rise above it.

“The Blues,” Depression, Anxiety, Seasonal Depression…whatever it is, sometimes there are moments where you are physically unable to “think positive,” which is the last thing that someone who is struggling with depression wants to hear.

(I heard it a few times growing up, and although they meant well, it didn’t really help.)

Sometimes I wish there was more you can do for someone.

I am very empathetic…and when I see someone suffering…I feel that pain along with them. When its depression, I know what its like to feel hopeless, I know the fear, the anxiety, the lack of social skills that goes a long with it.

And I wish I could throw a little comfort their way.

Tonight, I made some “comfort” of my own. I know you’re not supposed to eat your problems, but sometimes I home-cooked meal…is a reminder that love and comfort are just around the corner.

A good meal makes you feel safe. A good meal is something nice to share with someone. And even if you don’t want to talk, or share your problems, at least someone is there to lend an ear…if you need it.

So, what did I make?

wpid-img_20150916_185341561.jpgEnchiladas! These I made with ground beef, corn tortillas, red enchilada sauce, chopped green chilies, onion and lots of sharp cheddar cheese.

I’ve never made them with beef before, but I’m very happy how they turned out. I got the recipe from The Pioneer Women, who is one of my favorites on food network.  The real recipe calls for cilantro, but Mike doesn’t like it very much, so I left it out.

If you have someone who suffers, lend them an ear if they need it, cook them a meal, or hey – build them a nest.

Everyone wants someplace safe they can go to get away for a while.

And chocolate. Chocolate is nice, too.  😉

Hope everyone has a great night!

 

Advertisements

My Likes and Dislikes, an Amelie-Inspired Post

I recently watched Amelie again, which is an adorable french film about a very shy young woman, who appreciates the small things in life and how she finds love. Although socially awkward Amelie should be miserable and lonely, she takes joy in small pleasures like:

Dipping her hand in sacks of grain, cracking creme brulee with a teaspoon, and skipping stones at St Martin’s Canal.’

9999It’s both simple and beautiful in an unsuspecting way, and I just love it. On the opposite spectrum are other characters dislikes: like puckered fingers in the bathtub, wet bathing suit shorts that stick to the skin, and the touch of someone you don’t know.

There is a lot of focus on the detail and that’s what makes it so great. I thought I’d make a list of my own just for fun:wpid-img_20150508_165734016.jpgAmanda is a shy yet passionate writer. She likes when men give their girlfriend’s flowers, running her fingers through the scruff on her boyfriend’s cheek, and driving down a long stretch of road with the sun on her face. 

wpid-img_20140602_185717984.jpg She likes listening to songs that make her cry, and the sweet yet, chewy taste of a warm chocolate chip cookie when you bite into it. Amanda likes when the colors of her food compliment each other, but she hates it when restaurants use too much salt.wpid-img_20141014_173831795.jpg
wpid-img_20150703_181421338.jpg

She dislikes long lines at the grocery store, scraping ice off her car windshield in the early morning, and when parents yell at their children in public.

She likes the smell of old books when you first open them and the crunch of potato chips after drinking a nice, cold Pepsi.

I think this is something that I could go on and on with, but why not try one of your own? It’s fun, trust me!

Happy Saturday everyone!

Poem: Freedom and the 4th

I kept thinking yesterday was Saturday because I had the day off, but today IS Saturday and it is also the 4th, and to me, that means family, freedom and fireworks! Oh, and hotdogs. I make sure I consume at least one hotdog around this time of year. Usually at a cook out. With pasta salads. And watermelon. And cupcake desserts.

Source: deviantart.com

Source: deviantart.com

Anyway, we wouldn’t be here celebrating the 4th, if it weren’t for the brave soldiers many years ago, who made that dream a reality.

Free our troops

Really free them

Each sacrifice is sacred

Each life is special

Don’t forget the lives

Our soldiers give up, but

Mostly: Pray they come home

Pray they come home safe!

I am eternally grateful to the men and women in service and the sacrifices that they have made and continue to make on a daily basis. Without them, we would not be here to celebrate the freedom we so desperately love on this independence day. Thank you all!

Happy July 4th everyone! 🙂

Some Non-Fiction: Today’s Observation, a Conversation at the Lunch Table

I’ve been listening to David Sedaris’ Let’s Explore Diabetes with Owls, at work for the last few days. His book is a collection of essays about his life and some short stories. For some reason, it inspired me to try a little bit of non-fiction writing. I do need to record more of what I do, and the conversations I have on a given basis. Mr. Sedaris apparently writes too much in his journal, or so he confesses.

Non-fiction isn’t always easy for me. I don’t know if writing about your life, and the people in it is easier for some – but for me, I have to hold onto the little bit of friends I have. So it is difficult for me to just let go. Being a writer is about writing truth…and I worry too much about what people think.

Anyway, the point is, I am trying to challenge myself to try something new. I do not write enough about my life, and that is a shame. As boring as it is, there’s got to be some gem amongst the stones, right? Right?  Ahaha. Here goes.


 A conversation at the lunch table.

“Someone stole my carrots!” I look down into my lunch bag at the lonely tub of hummus. It stares back at me blankly, smudgy, feeling like old cement.

“Well that’s just great!” I say as I shove my lunch away. “Now I have nothing to eat my hummas with.” The last part is said with a bit of a whine. If its one thing that pisses me off, it’s going hungry.

I look up to a stare from my fellow co-workers. The woman next to me gets an uncertain look. “Someone stole my soda once.”

“Seems unlikely,” says another woman, her hair is grey, long, down her back. “I mean, if it was a bag of chips…”

“At least you have pasta,” says another.  A young woman, who reads graphic novels and writes in a journal covered with cartoon characters. “I have this,” and she gestures towards a microwave pizza she bought in the vending machine. It’s one of those french bread kinds, that are usually better in an oven.

“How it is?” I ask, already a bit skeptical.

She shrugs. “It’s not as crunchy as I thought it would be.”

I respond with a thoughtful, “that’s too bad,” and make my way out of the break room. One thing I do like about my job: the people I work with. There are other things that leave much to be desired. A clean floor would be nice, for one.

“I suppose I could have left it on the counter…” I mumble a bit disappointed, turning the dial on my lock to shove my purse away in my locker. “But it sounded so much better being stolen. Other than me just being forgetful. You know, I was late to work this morning.”

The older woman with the long hair laughs. “And that’s your story and you’re sticking to it!”

“You’re darn right.”

I watch her head back up the stairs, back to work. Back to the monotony and a desk that smells like dust and sometimes burnt coffee. I’ll sometimes prop my folder up on my desk, to keep the computer from blowing hot air on my face. For some reason, this gives me a weird sense of victory. I suppose there is pleasure in the little things in life. Like I’ve beat the system. Like who cares if the computer may over-heat, at least my face is cool.

Back to work…back to work…

When I get home, I am hungry and tired, and I find a bag of carrot sticks sitting propped up against the microwave. I wave a fruit fly away.

“Think they’re still good?” I mutter, as I inspect the orange skin, that now looks dried and crackley, like they’ve been in the desert doing some serious time and not lounging serenely on my counter all day in an empty apartment.

My boyfriend gives a deep chuckle from the next room. “I’m sure they’re fine.”

I scrunch up my nose and laugh as I put them in the refrigerator, feeling suddenly like a little kid and then shaking my head at the absurdity of it all. How silly I was to think people would actually steal healthy food. Crunching carrots on the sly, isn’t exactly inconspicuous.

Unless there’s some kind of crazed vegetarian out there, just ready to go postal.

I’m starting to think I should be on the look out for Bug’s Bunny. I’ve tried the “What’s up, dock?” thing to Michael while munching on a carrot before. He doesn’t find it attractive.

Ah, next time I suppose.

 

Masterchef Junior Season 2 episode 6 Recap: Salmon Filets and Abby

I got a little behind on my Masterchef Junior episodes, and before I recap the finale, here is a recap of episode six:

Everyone is excited about being in the top four. Abby says that they have to be careful, because even the tiniest mistake could send you home. Adaiah wants a girl to win, because a boy won last year.

Photo credit: FOX

Photo credit: FOX

Joe says that if they excel at the challenges that are thrown at them, any one of the kids has a chance to be the biggest fish in the culinary pond. Naturally, this is a segue into what the kids will be working with: fish. They all head back to the pantry and each grab a fish, which happens to be a very large Alaskan salmon. The kids are sweet, and Samuel offers to help Abby with her fish, which is pretty big for an eight year old. He helps her put it at her station. She sighs with relief.

Gordon quickly demonstrates how to filet a salmon effectively, and how many filets they should be expecting to get when they are done. He buzzes through it quickly and warns them to pay attention because he’s only going to show them how to do it once. All of the kids look a little wide-eyed and intimidated.

For their next challenge, they have 30 minutes to filet their salmon like Gordon showed them. Whoever has the most filets at the end of the challenge has a big advantage in the next round and possibly a spot in the finale.

Already you can see that Abby is at a disadvantage because she might not be strong enough. She seems to be having problems cutting her fish. Samuel seems to be doing fine. Adaiah as well. It looks like Logan didn’t cut his salmon close enough to the bone and it looks like there was a lot of fish wasted.

Adaiah wins the challenge as her filets are perfect. Already it is clear that Adaiah and Samuel did the best, while Abby and Logan struggled in this challenge. Maybe age really does matter?

In the next challenge, each of them have 45 minutes to cook a filet using the ingredients that is given to them, but there is a catch: they don’t know what those ingredients will be. In the pantry, there are four refrigerators. One with 100 ingredients, one with 50, 25 and five. Adaiah’s advantage is that she gets to choose who has what ingredients.

Surprisingly, she gives the 100 ingredients to Abby and takes the 50 for herself. The 25 she gives to Samuel because she knows he likes to cook with upscale ingredients and there isn’t that much to choose from in that refrigerator. Poor Logan gets stuck with the five ingredients.

The judges comment that they really don’t need a lot of ingredients to make a fantastic dish. Abby, surprisingly, says the same exact thing when she mentions that she doesn’t need 100 ingredients. She can’t seem to figure out what she needs for her dish, and keeps running back into the pantry.

Logan is first to present his dish which is an olive oil poached salmon with potato rosette and broccoli rabe. Gordon says that poaching the salmon was a very bold move and not something that you see very often at their level, but he is impressed because the salmon is cooked perfectly. His broccoli rabe is not really cooked, though.

Photo Credit: FOX.

Photo Credit: FOX.

Abby is next and admits that having the 100 ingredients was actually hard for her. She made a mango and orange glazed salmon with carrot puree. Abby’s salmon is a little dry, but Gordan says that the carrot puree tastes delicious. Gordon tells her that it wasn’t her best salmon dish. But they offer a lot of encouragement too, and Joe says that if she turns out as great of a chef as she is a young lady, then she is going to make some amazing dishes. How sweet!

Samuel made pan-seared salmon with tomato confit and cilantro shallot gremolata. Graham says that he has some great flavors but that the flesh of the salmon is slightly over-cooked. Gordon says that it tastes fantastic but the filet is too small.

Adaiah makes Asian-style salmon with garlic broccoli and green bean stir-fry. Joe says that the salmon is cooked perfectly, but that she burnt the garlic on the broccoli. But when it comes down to it, it is the little details that make all the difference, and Adaiah and Abby are sent home.

This leaves two boys in the finale: Logan and Samuel. Not who I thought would be the top two in the finale, but we will see how it goes. It is difficult to see the two girls sent home; especially Abby who cries. Samuel says that he is happy he is in the finale, but he doesn’t like to see the friends that he has made go home. The judges remind them that this is just the beginning and they will accomplish so much more in the years to come.

Especially Abby, who is so sweet and so talented. She even makes Joe cry. She also gets a kiss on the cheek from Gordon Ramsay. Now, how many Masterchef junior’s can claim that? I think it was a difficult goodbye for everyone, but they managed to get through it with some watery smiles.

I wanted to see a girl in the finale as well, but it looks like a tough competition in the next episode when Logan and Samuel go head to head and we see who will be the next Masterchef junior!

About this Blog Update

In light of my more recent news in cancelling Dawn’s Rising, I went ahead and changed my About this Blog page.

It is clear to me now that this blog isn’t what it started out to be, and that’s okay. We all learn as we go, right?

Now, I will be focusing on my passions for this blog, and they seem to boil down to: writing, fiction, (mostly young adult fiction) poetry, TV/movie reviews, and food. (And for those of you interested, I currently have been reviewing the newest season of Masterchef Junior.)

And thanks so much to those who have chosen to follow me through the ride! There are truly some amazing, creative people out there. 🙂

Happy writing!

 

NaNoWriMo: Results Revealed, and Future Blogging Goals

My NaNoWriMo attempt was a complete failure. Trash. Zilch. Nothing. I managed to write probably about six pages and half an outline.

But the truth of the matter: I’m not ashamed.

Because I was able to realize something.

When I created this website, I did so with the thought that I would also self-publish a novel; Dawn’s Risingwhich was a novel idea I created purely for the purpose of this blog, and that is the problem.

dawns rising cancelledI wasn’t writing my story for the right reasons. I wasn’t in love with it. I didn’t perfect it, I didn’t craft it. I thought I could just sit down and write something worthy of sharing with others, a “practice novel,” but I realize now that I am too proud and care too much about presenting something to an audience that is less than worthy. In order to truly perfect the novel, I would need time, and the truth is there are other projects that I care about more.

I’m realizing, even without my pipe dream that was Dawn’s Rising, my blog is beginning to develop itself. I am finding amazing writers and people out there, and I am writing. I’m writing reviews, and blog posts, but I am still writing. It is excellent practice, and I’m so very proud of myself and my perseverance.

And although Dawn’s Rising is taking a temporary to permanent hiatus, I am excited about the projects that I can now devote my time to. No more wasting time worrying, analyzing and not writing. I want my writing to feel alive again, not like a chore. Although, there is always that fine balance when you write for work or pleasure, but why not have both?

I do want to thank those who have supported and inspired me on here. And I am sorry that I do not have a finished work to present to you that I promised. However, that doesn’t mean that there won’t be other stories for you to enjoy.

I want that fire back. The complete and unaltered joy of taking pen to paper and nothing exists but me and the story. The feeling that you’ve gone through time; you’ve gone somewhere that no one else has. I want to devote my time to sharing the writing that I care about, so no holding back!

I will continue with the reviews, articles, poetry and short stories and anything that seems worthy of sharing for all you writing, movie, TV, food or story lovers out there.

And that seems like a worthy goal.

Happy writing everyone!

 

 

 

 

Masterchef Junior Season 2 Episode 4 Recap: Fried eggs, Restaurant Dreams and Over-cooked Protein

Tomorrow night premieres a new episode of Masterchef Junior, so how about a quick recap of last week’s episode?

Credit: Greg Gayne/Fox

Credit: Greg Gayne/Fox

Right from the beginning the kids are asked what they would do if they won the $100,000 and the Masterchef junior trophy. Adaiah said she would buy guitars, a piano, and a dirt bike. Oona would go to Vegas, and Abby would buy a bunch of horse posters. Gordon says she could buy her own horse, but Abby replies she doesn’t have enough room in her back yard. (Tehehe).

The first challenge: to make a perfect sunny-side up egg. No brown edges, no over-cooked yoke. Poor Oona and Abby seem to struggle. Sean, of course, has the most eggs. He wins the challenge with ten perfect eggs. Abby has the less, with just two eggs.

But there is a twist to the next challenge. They can only use the same amount of ingredients in their next dish as how many eggs they managed to cook. Looks like Abby is going to have to step it up some! Gordon gives her a hug and says that she can do it. (So adorable).

The kids are asked about their dreams of having their own restaurants. They are all so very creative. Abby wants to have a vet clinic/restaurant which specializes in healthy food. She said she’s going to name it “Horses and Courses.” Oh, we love you Abby! Logan wants an underwater bistro. And as Samuel is talking about his french restaurant which is (not surprising) called “Le Samuel,” he tucks the plans to his establishment back into a briefcase. Seriously? Where did they find this kid?!

For their next dish, the kids have one hour to create the signature dish that they would want in their restaurant. We also learn in this bit that Graham was most inspired by Gordon Ramsay in his career. We also learn that Sean wants a restaurant called “The Drunken Cow,” because he specializes in cooking with meat and likes to cook with wine a lot. Wait a minute, this kid is like…twelve.

Abby, who had only two ingredients, makes salmon with asparagus five ways and the judges are impressed because the salmon is perfectly cooked. Sean is next with the most ingredients at ten, he made a rib eye steak with paprika crema and potatoes. His steak is slightly overcooked, but graham likes the sauce. Levi makes a pan-seared salmon with a mustard maple glaze and broccoli done two ways. His salmon is also over-cooked. C’mon guys!

Adaiah is next with her yogurt-crusted lamb chop which she made with sweet potatoes and orange sauce. Graham likes the flavor of the orange and how everything comes together. Oona only had four ingredients as well, and she makes scallops two ways with ginger oil and cauliflower puree. Her dish is the most presentable, but half of her scallops are over-cooked.

Logan makes flat iron steak marinated in soy sauce and ginger with bamboo rice. The steak is perfectly cooked and well-seasoned, according to Joe, but the rice is over-cooked and missing salt. Gordon says that they are a little bit underwhelmed by his dish, poor fellow. I guess the days of sugar-coated niceties are over. He still gets a hug from Ramsay. What is even more touching is the other kids that get emotional in reaction to Logan’s disappointment. Even though it is a competition, its so sweet that these kids are also friends.

Josh is next to present his dish and he made curried duck a l’orange with cilantro rice. The duck is slightly over-cooked and Graham says that the cilantro wasn’t needed, that he should have used another ingredient instead to perfect the dish.

Samuel is last to present his dish, and already the judges aren’t impressed. He had his choice of eight ingredients and Gordan says it looks like he has only three ingredients on the plate. He made a five-spice seared duck with pesto cucumber and zucchini puree. But the earlier critiques are only to add to the drama, because Gordan says that the duck is cooked perfectly. Finally! Someone who didn’t over-cook their protein!

This makes me wonder yet again if last season’s kids were a fluke? Was it staged? Because so many of the contestants seemed to have mistakes tonight.

The two that had astounding dishes: Abby and Samuel. Samuel says that it is time to buy into the Le Samuel stock because it’s going to be an up day in the stock market. Okay, even as arrogant as that sounds…it is still amusing.

Sean, Oona, Levi and Josh are in the bottom four. Sadly, at the end of the night, Josh and Levi get sent home. This is unfair, I think, because Levi overall has had more successful dishes than many of them, but Oona is their entertainer, so of course she can’t go home yet!

Looks like a restaurant take-over in the next episode! Here’s a sneak peak:

 

Masterchef Junior Season 2 Episode 3 Recap: Cupcakes, Ramsay’s Mum, and Shepard’s Pie

Tuesday’s episode starts out with a team challenge; the top ten are presented with cupcakes and while they are devouring their delicious treats, they get the bad news: whoever has the same cupcake as them will be their partner in the next round. The task: to make a dozen high quality cupcakes, but they won’t be just standing side by side, it’s a three-legged race!

Source: Fox. Contestant Adaiah, who's been shaping up to be a top contender.

Source: Fox. Contestant Adaiah, who’s been shaping up to be a top contender.

The teams are: Abby and Mitchell, Sam and Adaiah, Levi and Samuel, Sean and Logan, Oona and Josh.

The idea is to work together on a dozen cupcakes, yet everyone seems to be doing two different flavors. For some of the kids, being tied together is more awkward than others. Joe teases Oona about being tethered to Josh after the challenge is done, to which she amusingly protests with a loud “No!” Ah, well, at ages nine and ten, I still thought boys had cooties too.

In a bit of fun, the judges are tied together as they inspect everyone’s cupcakes. I love how they don’t seem to be taking themselves as seriously this season. They are essentially the teachers, yes, but why not have a little fun, too? And a key part of the entertainment is lightening the mood in moments of stress. I think they’ve got it
down in a nutshell. When asked if being tied together was difficult, Gordon’s like, “Now you know what its like when you are married.” Har. Har.

The top three groups had the best cupcakes: Sam and Adaiah, Abby and Mitchell and Sean and Logan.

Sam and Adaiah’s cupcakes are chosen first. They made an orange honey bosom cupcake, and a vanilla cupcake with raspberry. Abbey and Mitchell also impress with their cupcakes. They made a Mexican hot chocolate cupcake and a peanut butter cup cupcake.

And also in the top three again: Sean and Logan, who impressed the judges with their culinary skills. They made lemon basil cupcakes and a chocolate raspberry cupcake with a creative candied sugar on top. The cupcakes are gorgeous; they really do look like a work of art. Logan says that, “Sean really brought it with the presentation, and he
brought it with the flavor.” They also are the only ones that had a cupcake with a filling in it.

Source: Fox

Source: Fox

Naturally, Sean and Logan win the mystery box challenge and gain an advantage in the next round. Their cupcakes really were quite stunning.

Gordan Ramsay’s mum stops by for a visit. When asked about her son’s success, she chalks it up to trial and error. I love it! For the next challenge, Sean and Logan get to choose from Gordan’s three favorite dishes that his mom used to make for him: fish sandwich, chicken curry, and Shepard’s pie. And Ramsay’s mum will stay as a guest judge.

I personally don’t think this is completely fair, as Gordan grew up in the UK, and the stuff that he was eating as a kid isn’t necessarily what kids in America would eat on a regular basis, but then again, these kids are adventurous little cooks and aren’t intimidated by a little bit of curry.

Sean and Logan choose Shepard’s pie for the next challenge.

Surprisingly, Oona struggles for the first time. Most of the kids, it seems, have never made or tasted Shepard’s pie before. It is heartbreaking especially to watch Oona, who is nine years old going on thirty, and claims that she has never done so badly before.

Levi, Abby, and Samuel come out strong, although, Samuel seems to stretch the limit a bit by deconstructing the Shepard’s pie, when they clearly said to elevate it, not take it apart. Mitchell also struggles which is tough to see, because we know that he is a top contender. Sam also breaks down when he accidentally makes his potatoes too runny. Graham is quickly there to offer encouragement, but he doesn’t seem to bounce back.

Adaiah and Levi have the strongest dishes again, while Mitchel and Sam get sent home. It’s getting more and more difficult to watch the kids get sent home, especially when we are just getting to see their personalities. And the worse part: watching them cry, because I hate to see them cry.

You can tell it’s also hard for the judges, too, but they also encourage, and their words of advice are uplifting for the heartbroken kids. And yes, they should be proud to be in the top ten best junior cooks in America.

Next episode the top eight make fried eggs and it looks like we are getting into the best and brightest. Not surprising that some of the oldest kids on the show are some of the last in the competition. They seem to have the advantage of consistency so far.

Here’s a peek at next week’s episode:

MasterChef Junior Season 2 Episode 2 Recap: Citrus Pies, oh my!

Why do we love Masterchef junior?

I think there is a key phrase in this week’s episode, and that has to be: “Gordon Ramsay doused in syrup.”

MASTERCHEF: Contestant Oona in the all-new "Junior Edition: Flip It!" episode of MASTERCHEF airing Tuesday, Nov. 11 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. CR: Greg Gayne / FOX. © 2014 FOX Broadcasting Co.

MASTERCHEF: Contestant Oona in the all-new “Junior Edition: Flip It!” episode of MASTERCHEF airing Tuesday, Nov. 11 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. CR: Greg Gayne / FOX. © 2014 FOX Broadcasting Co.

The judges kicked off this week’s second episode in good fun – the three that had the best dishes in last week’s episode, (Sean, Oona and Samuel), had a challenge to see how many pancakes they could cook and stack in five minutes. Each kid is competing for one of the judges and whoever wins, gets to ‘save’ their judge from getting doused in syrup.

Although Sean wins the challenge, all judges end up covered in sticky goodness and pieces of pancake get tossed at Gordon Ramsay and get stacked on top of Joe’s bald head. Pancakes do seem to make a good hat, by the way.

Anyway, as winner of the challenge Sean gets to pick what the other kids will be making: Citrus pies. AND he gets to pick another competitor to sit out of the challenge with him. He picks Mitchell because he knows that Mitchell is good at citrus pies and would have made it to the next round anyway.
I think its adorable that these kids at such tender ages are so confident at making certain things. And the creativeness is high: key lime pie, raspberry lime, grapefruit, blood orange; but like any competition, I get nervous just watching these kids work.

Will they get their pies done in time? What if it turns out wrong? And the terrible thought: What if they go home after this challenge?

I hate to see them cry.

Samuel over-complicates with his multiple flavors, Adaiah wows with her blood orange pie, and Oona once again impresses the judges with her consistency. It’s a shame because the kids that don’t get a lot of face time are either in the bottom four or are just average and skating by. While last episode I was uncertain about these new batch of kids, their personalities are definitely starting to shine, and who doesn’t love Oona, right? And Logan, with his Dad who’s a politician, and that goofy grin and bow tie.

Levi shows his brilliant baking skills with his key lime pie, and Abbey who is the youngest in the competition, makes a phenomenal blood orange pie, which she creatively tops with jelly beans. I thought it was a daring move, but Gordon seemed to like it.

And while we were just beginning to see their personalities, Natalie and Jessica were sent home. And just last episode, Natalie was a top contender. I’ve seen other competitors go home because of baking challenges, and I guess this is no different. Not every great cook is a great baker, too.

I didn’t agree with the judge’s decisions – I thought Josh’s pie was worse than Jessica’s,
but I guess they thought pecans didn’t really belong on a cream pie. Poor girl.

Next week, it looks like a three-legged race, and another chance for the top ten to prove what they can do. While the pancake challenge was fun, and the three-legged race in next week’s episode looks equally enjoyable, I think it is time to remind the producers that these kids are cooking on an ADULT level, so how about a few more adult challenges, eh?

It’s amazing to see what these kids can do when faced with the ability to let their imaginations run wild. Ah, well, there’s still several more episodes to go! Who would have thought:  a raspberry lime pie? Sounds fabulous!

I’ll be tuning in next week for more delicious confections, that’s for sure!

Here’s a peak at the new season: