Word count: 1922
The standard of Jiang Qian Fan
And judge David was an even harsher critic of the dessert.
He had only one mouth, and furrowed his eyebrows: “Everything was done perfectly, but precisely because it was done to the T, the burnt taste of the syrup is even more obvious…… I was prepared to be fully conquered…… but my whole heart feels empty now……”
Yes, Viktor made a mistake. This mistake may be nothing to average chefs, afterall, only few customers would be able to taste it, but to these judges with sensitive taste buds, it was impossible to close an eye.
Viktor’s matcha opera cake received a score of 6.8 points, his final score was still 8.7 points.
The audience exhaled, as long as it were above 8.7 points, Viktor’s placing would still be very obvious. Unless the 2nd place Lin Ke Song got 10 points, it would be impossible to beat him.
It looked like, Viktor was going to be the champion of this competition.
“Actually, the second place is not oo bad too ba…… I’m saying that you managed to meet a competitor like Viktor…… so as long as Ke Song is able to get a 2nd place, and not be overtaken by that Goto Nozomi then it’ll be all fine…… im saying, that even if she were taken over, she’d still be able to get a 3rd place right?” Uncle Lin got nervous, and incoherent.
“Dad, what are you talking about! It isn’t even the last moment yet!” Lin Xiao Xue used her arm to give Uncle Lin a knock.
Song Yi Ran gave a little smile saying: “yeah ah, it isn’t even the last moment yet.”
At this time, ShanSha too, raised her hand to indicate that she was done.
Her cooking, from the appetiser to the main dish and even the dessert, were all vegetarian.
In New York, the most prominent vegetarian chef was the “Witch” Lilith.
ShanSha’s appetiser used various kinds of beans to make a puree, to place in the middle of mushrooms and sent to get baked, when the richness of the bean puree and the freshness of the mushrooms fused together, shove everything into your mouth at once, bite down on it, and the juices of the bean puree in the mushroom will flow out…… Winston let out a long long sigh.
On the plate of every judge, there were 3 mushrooms, and David couldn’t resist the temptation, and actually ate all 3 of the mushrooms at once.
“Judge David, you have to stop, you must know that there are still a few more contestants whose dishes you have to taste!” Annalise couldn’t help but voice out.
“Don’t worry, my appetite has always been large. These 3 small mushrooms are small fry to me……”
All the audience guffawed, the competitive atmosphere became more relaxed.
And ShanSha’s main dish was stir-fried tofu with spinach and mushroom sauce.
The expression of each judge when they cut the tofu open was like they were cutting into the tender fresh steak, and their expressions when the food entered their mouths were delightful too.
“I have never thought that food without any trace of meat would be able to whet my appetite greatly!” the way David licked his lips was like a fat cat, making the audience unable to help but laugh.
Winston, Kevin and the other judges had high praises for this main dish, the only flaw was that the tofu should have been fried on the other side too, to all every mouthful to be able to get the crunchy feeling.
As for ShanSha’s dessert, it was golden ganmani cake. Tiny embellishments of mint leaves on the cake was scattered throughout, carrying flavours of orange, liqueurs and chocolate almonds, the cake was soft and moist, the only lacking thing was that in the process of making the cake, the cake hadn’t fully frozen before the chocolate candy seal was applied.
ShanSha’s cooking got a final score of 8 points, she looked obviously not satisfied with the score, because this score didn’t allow her the absolute advantage to enter the top 3 places.
After ShanSha, Goto Nozomi too raised his hand to indicate that he’d finished cooking.
“why is everyone done and only left with Ke Song and a Russian competitor ah! So anxiety-inducing!” Lin Xiao Xue who was in the audience covered her eyes.
Uncle Lin turned around to pat the back of her hands saying: “Don’t be nervous! Don’t be nervous! Maybe Goto Nozomi will make a mistake!”
Lin Xiao Xue took a look at Goto Nozomi’s calm expression, and shook her head saying: “no matter how you look at him, he doesn’t look like he’ll make any mistake ah……”
What Goto Nozomi presented was Japanese cuisine with a French twist.
His appetiser was fennel octopus salad.
“Oh, fennel octopus salad is the most popular appetiser in French cuisine. The octopus itself doesn’t have any flavour, whether the salad can be delicious, will depend on the balance of the ratio of the octopus and fennel. Too much fennel, the original taste of the octopus will be lost. Too little fennel, the freshness of the octopus will be unable to take off and be lifted.”
Winston took a mouthful, then put down the utensils, this made everyone tense up was there a problem with the salad?
“A perfect creation, if this were an opera, I would give it a standing ovation. In this salad, once the octopus and fennel meet, it’s like experiencing an intensely passionate kiss…… this dish has definitely shown the standard of seafood master Huggins!”
Winston rarely used analogies to describe a contestant’s creation, this showed that he was really satisfied with Goto Nozomi’s cooking.
And Goto Nozomi’s main dish conquered the taste buds of the judges strongly: Spicy squid. The ingredients used were very simple, apart from squid, there was only onions, garlic, red pepper, rosemary, sea salt and black pepper. But the control of fire for this dish made the judges shout praise, all the ratios of the ingredients done to perfection, making people uncontrollably send the whole piece of squid into their mouth.
“tender fresh and full of flavour, the tingling sensation fo the pepper spreads on the tongue the moment the squid opens, a surprise hidden in the balance of flavours…… this is the taste that we judges want ot taste the most! No complicated cooking process, no hard to pronounce ingredients, everything depending on technique.”
Winston said his heartfelt and most important expectation that he had for the contestants from the start.
A pity that compared to Goto Nozomi’s appetiser and main dish, his dessert was lacking: Royal bittersweet chocolate cake.
The sweetness of the sugar cream gum was a little lacking, this was due to Goto Nozomi himself not fancying sweet foods.
No matter, Goto Nozomi got a high average score of 9.4 points. If the dessert were a little more perfect, his score for this round would have reached 9.6 points.
But this kind of excellence could not let him chase up to Viktor’s overall score. After all, the advantage that Viktor had gained for the previous 2 rounds was too much, and even though there was a huge mistake for the third round, the fourth round and the finale brought him back many points.
Annalise looked at the scoreboard, she smiled towards Lin Ke Song and the remaining Russian contestant: “Darlings, there are 3 minutes left to the end of the competition! Are you all ready?”
Both the Russian contestant and Lin Ke Song enter the plating phase.
The Russian contestant accidentally knocked a portion of the main dish to the bottom of the work island, he looked at the dish on the floor stupidly, and couldn’t help but grab his forehead as he retreated.
The audience let out a gasp, and this unintentionally gave him more pressure.
Annalise couldn’t help but give a reminder: “Please take note, even if you lose a plate of the main dish, there are 12 judges, your score will not be affected by more than 0.5 points! My suggestion is that you calmly finish doing what you need to do, and hold on to the end!”
The Russian contestant gave an exhale, and continued to finish his plating.
And at this time, Lin Ke Song raised her hands, indicating that she’d finished all her cooking.
“Ah…… Lin Ke Song! You must know that I myself have very high expectations for you! The judges have already tried Viktor’s perfect appetiser and main dish, ShanSha’s surprising vegetarian cooking and Goto Nozomi’s subduing spicy squid, Ke Song, if you wish to remain in the top 3 positions, you mustn’t’ve made any mistake, or have any flaws. You understand? ”
Lin KE Song lowered her head to look at the cooking that she herself had prepared, and nodded: “They are perfect.”
The audience who were watching Lin Ke Song from below the stage were surprised at her confidence. Even though they thought that this was the brave front of a young lady who persisted to the end, these 3 hours of her calm and methodical ways couldn’t help but make them believe in her confidence.
When her cooking was placed on the food cart, and sent to the judges room, she didn’t feel any of the uneasiness or nervousness from before, on the contrary…… she felt that everything was a lot lighter.
She turned her head, and looked towards Jiang Qian Fan, it was like he knew where she was, his eyes were looking in her direction.
The appetiser of the pea shrimp jelly was placed in front of the judges.
Annalise smiled and asked: “judges, are you sure that you are still able to continue eating?”
“Oh…… heavens ah! Pea shrimp jelly…… all I know is that in this country, the only 2 people who are able to make this dish to peak standard are Michelin 3 stars restaurant polarlight’s head chef Brody …… and Jiang Qian Fan. If it weren’t for the gossip news, I definitely have not believed that head chef Jiang Qian Fan would mentor an amateur level student! So I firmly believe that this student definitely has some extraordinary talent! This dish combines the cooking methods of French and Chinese cooking, and presents the richness of the French cuisine and the uniqueness of Chinese cuisine to the tastebuds! I really want to know now, just how much of Jiang Qian Fan’s skill set did this dish inherit!” David picked up his fork and knife in great anticipation, but he couldn’t bear to fork the shrimp jelly, “oh, heavens ah, I’m really nervous. This dish is beautifully plated. The green transparency of the shrimp jelly us like lying at the base of an emerald lake. With this refractiveness, it’s texture will definitely be amazing! But I’m worried…… if it doesn’t match up to the deliciousness of my imagination…… I will be so devastated ah……”
Mayer who was in the audience gave a sigh, and whispered in complain to Jiang Qian Fan beside him: “this god damn fat David, can’t he just talk less rubbish, and put the shrimp jelly into his mouth, then tell everyone if it’s good or not! ”
And Winston too lifted his hand to press against his brows: “If I hadn’t known…… that all the participants of the competition were under the witness of the audience…… the plating of this appetiser, colour, every detail…… will make me think that this was Jiang Qian Fan…… but the appearance doesn’t matter. Only the perfection and exquisiteness of the layers of flavours, will really represent Jiang Qian Fan’s standard.”