FOX – Hells Kitchen, Season 9, Episode 14 Recap: Did the Wrong Girl Go Home?

Last night on Hell’s Kitchen, the five remaining chefs received a mulligan after no one was eliminated last week. They awoke this week to a new challenge: determining what to do with the giant salmon that had fallen from the sky on the table in front of them.

Fortunately, Chef Gordon Ramsey let them off the hook. They didn’t have to portion the fish themselves, but they did have to each take several, raw king salmon portions and turn them into a profitable entrées. The three guest judges had to put a price on each dish, what they thought they each dish was worth, and then the three were averaged. The chef with the highest average would win the challenge.

Will’s dish kicked things off at with a high average of $29. Elise’s macaroni and cheese on her fish didn’t fly and none of the judges were impressed. Nor were they very happy with her explanation that she just wanted to put the mac and cheese there. Tommy’s plate looked better than it tasted. Paul’s dish impressed all three judges and put him on top. Jennifer impressed the first two judges, but didn’t impress the third judge enough to put her over the top.

Paul’s reward for winning the challenge was a helicopter tour of Los Angeles with Gordon Ramsey and a nice lunch in some fancy restaurant. He got to take someone with him, and he selected Tommy. The rest of them, for losing, had to stay behind and spruce up the bar and the restaurant area. Oh, they also had to scale the fish, which naturally, Elise wouldn’t do. Yeah, I was just as shocked as you are.

Since there is now only 5 chefs remaining, all wearing black jackets instead of Blue or Red, Hell’s Kitchen opened with one kitchen instead of the usual two. The first problem they had was the total lack of communication between Jennifer and Tommy on the appetizers. Quite simply, no one was talking, and Ramsey was getting hotter by the moment. Jennifer and Tommy were in complete shut-down mode on the cappelini.

Appetizers finally started coming out of the kitchen, until Jennifer and Elise started having problems with scallops. Once the scallops were done nearly perfect, the risotto was burned. They just could not get it together.

Then, just to make it a little more interesting, that old rascal Gordon wanted to start pushing out entrees at the same time. Of course, Paul tried to push out a dry salmon, but Gordon caught it and didn’t let it out. Then Elise had problems getting her salmon cooked properly and she keeps screwing up the skin.
At one point, Ramsey was so fed up that he broke tradition and served two patrons at a table who had ordered meat, while the other two diners were still waiting for their fish orders. Sadly, the two who were waiting ended up waiting for nearly 20 minutes.

As the meat entrees came in, Paul and Will handled them perfectly. They went right back out with no problem at all. They took care of an entire 6-top with ease.

Once again, Elise made an attempt at the salmon, and once again, she had major issues. Tommy stepped over to help her. He tried to tell her that her flame was too low, among other things, but she couldn’t listen to him. She told him to get out of her face. Of course, she brought up lousy fish to the pass. Ramsey kicked them all out of the kitchen. A moment later, sous chef Andi came back and retrieved Paul and Will. Ramsey realized that they had done nothing wrong and wanted them back in the kitchen to finish the service.

As service came to an end, Ramsey told the chefs to go up to the dorm and select 2 people from which he can choose one to send home. As they all left, Tommy approached him and asked why he was thrown out. He said that he didn’t think he should have been. Ramsey told him to get out or he would stick his head in an oven and talk to him through the gas jets. Tommy told him to go ahead and do it. Finally, Tommy walked away.

Back at the dorm, Elise tried to make some kind of alliance deal with Will and Paul, telling them that if they stick up for her, she’ll have their back to the end. I think she’s confused. This isn’t Survivor. This is Hell’s Kitchen, baby. There are no alliances here. Survivor starts on Wednesday, and she’d get killed on that show. As it is, I don’t know how she’s made it this far on Hell’s kitchen without someone burying a meat cleaver in her skull.

The first nominee was Jennifer because of all the problems she had with the appetizers. Their second nominee was Elise, because of all the problems cooking in general. Ramsay tells Jennifer that it was her worst performance, so why should she stay? Jennifer talks about her organizational skills while owning up to her lack of communication. Ramsay wants to know how she’ll command a team if she can’t talk to the person right next to her. Ramsey said his biggest problem is that one of them can’t talk and the other one can’t shut up.

Ramsey then asked Paul who the weakest chef was. After hemming and hawing, he finally answered that Jennifer was. Jennifer was not a happy camper. She said, “Are you f’kn serious?” Then he asked Will, who also told him the same thing. Only Tommy told him that Elise was the weaker chef.

Ramsey decided to eliminate Jennifer. He told her that she had an amazing heart and an extraordinary palate, but she just wasn’t ready to run a team. On her way out, Elise told her to keep her head up, to which Jennifer responded with an “F** Off” and flipped her the bird over her shoulder without looking back. Under the circumstances, a perfectly acceptable response. The only better response would have been a flying star razor at her face. But this would have to do.

Next week, Elise is gone. Either by finally being eliminated or by somehow winning this thing. If she wins, Lynn, my wife, has sworn to me that she is never watching this show again. I’m sure she is not in the minority of people saying that. For me, I’m going on record saying that Will should win. He has been the best of the group consistently since the first week.

Tune in to Fox next Monday night for a two-hour season finale, then stop by here at TMRZoo on Tuesday for our finale recap.