Iron Chef Questions

On this week’s “Cupcake Wars” (Cirque De Soleil) on the Food Network, one of the bakers lost Round 2 for failing to have enough cupcakes for the judges. They need 3 cupcakes for 3 judges, but fell one cupcake short. In an episode of “Chopped,” (I’m sorry I can’t remember when it was originally broadcasted as it was a rerun), a chef included raw onion in a dish, to which two of the judges stated they disliked. Round 2 happens and the chef does it again, hoping to hide them this time. The chef is admonish for it.

So, on “Iron Chef,” has a chef ever failed to complete a dish or make enough of a dish for the three judges? Has an Iron Chef ever made a dish that a judge would not eat for any reason? Maybe the judge had an allergy or doesn’t like offal, etc.

I have wondered about the allergy angle and keeping the secret ingredient as secret as they apparently do (seems there are 3 possibilities revealed to the chefs before the show).

I suppose all the guests and judges and celebrities could fill out a survey when they are signed up and the producers just put the folks on shows with compatible ingredients.

On a truffle episode on the original Japanese show, IIRC, Dr. Hattori made the smallest number of dishes I have yet seen on an episode, 2.

As I recall, he lost, but I think it was not for the small # of dishes, just that his contender was just so much more capable and poised in the format of the show.
On various shows, judges decline to eat portions of various dishes. On Chopped, raw poultry is never eaten, no matter how many contestants persist in serving it.

On Iron Chef, Morimoto made a smoked asparagus (he has done this item a few times, once it bombed) and a judge said it offended her taste buds. A pretty strong rebuke for the show, especially in Japan with their cultural take on voicing criticism.

Compound ingredients have been a bit perplexing on Chopped. Neapolitan ice cream, for instance, use all 3 flavors or just one? And for a canned or bottled item, what of using just the juice, or just the whatever, or both? Another example was a boxed mac and cheese product. As I recall, a chef did not use the pasta, and another skipped the foil sauce pack.

I did see an episode of the original Iron Chef where the Iron Chef had 2 dishes, the challenger only had 1 (plus a second which did not have the secret ingredient).

In Iron Chef America, there has been at least one case where the challenger did not complete the required 5 dishes in time.

I read an article in a newspaper about a chef who was on an episode of Iron Chef America that was filmed but not shown. The chef (that is, the challenger, not the Iron Chef for that episode) only finished two of the five dishes in time. The producers of the show tossed out the footage that had been filmed. At some point months later they asked the chef to return and he successfully completely everything, so the episode was shown.

Roberto Donna, Season 1 of Iron Chef America. The very first episode, in fact. The secret ingredient was scallops.

In Iron Chef America: Battle of the Masters (or whatever they called it), Sakai famously made a trout ice cream that was declared “inedible” by the judges. Other than that, they almost always eat everything. Every other episode one of the judges will say “I don’t normally like raw fish/sweetbreads/whatever, but this is great.” The chefs know what they’re doing and rarely have any bombs.

And the episode did air (review linked, posted after this first episode); I’ve also seen it though I don’t recall if I saw it the first time or in reruns. Donna won the rematch.