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Meal of Champions

Meal of Champions

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Learn what Floyd Mayweather’s personal chef Jordan Cha'Taun cooked up for his winning meal

Floyd "Money" Mayweather and Chef Jourdan "Cha'Taun" Atkinson are a dream team when it comes to sticking to a winning diet.

When Floyd "Money" Mayweather stepped into the ring Sept. 14 at the WBC/WBA 154-pound title fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, he was ready. The now possibly highest-paid athlete in sports brutally destroyed his opponent, Canelo Alvarez, in the fight, making him an undefeated champion. Of course, Mayweather had spent months conditioning his body to train for the event, and while he credits his corner and his father for helping him win, he also has to thank his personal chef, Jourdan "Cha'Taun" Atkinson.

CBS News reported that Mayweather woke up weighing 146 pounds the morning of the fight, 10 pounds shy of the category weight and 19 pounds less than his opponent. He reportedly immediately called his chef to make sure he was as ready for the fight as he could be, and clearly the chef did not disappoint.

But what do you feed a champion on the brink of a career-changing fight? To gain the weight, Mayweather had the chef prepare starch- and carb-heavy meals to help fuel his workouts. Atkinson shared via email that he eats very late at night and very early in the morning to make sure the food sticks to his body. Mayweather only had one thing to say about his personal chef in the Showtime All Access report: "Her cooking speaks for itself, it is truly incredible."

Chef Atkinson is a heavy weight champion in her own right, earning her chops as the personal chef of rapper P. Diddy. While she dedicates her time to making winning meals for Mayweather and friends, she did give The Daily Meal an inside scoop on two of the champ's favorite dishes.

Tournament of Champions recap: Time to re-write the rules?

In Tournament of Champions season 2, the twists and turns have had Food Network fans wondering if the NCAA tournament wrote the script for this culinary competition. While upsets were expected at some point in this series, no one would have expected the most recent outcome. Is it time to re-write the Tournament of Champion rules?

With six chefs seeking the final three spots in the semifinals, it was a combination of emotions in the kitchen. Although all the chefs wanted to win, a few chefs seemed more focused on the challenge at hand. With the randomizer controlling the chefs&rsquo fate, the reality is that the judges control the outcome. Did anyone predict this week&rsquos scenario?

For the first battle, Tiffani Faison took on Darnell Ferguson. Even though Chef Tiffani had scored some big victories, this battle would not be a walk in the park.

With a spin of the randomizer, the wheel provided whole chicken, curry leaves, coconut opener, Greek and 30 minutes. Looking at this ingredient mix, the combination really doesn&rsquot go together. Curry and Greek is not a fusion food on anyone&rsquos plate.

Listening to the judges&rsquo feedback, it was not as glowing as previous battled. While Chef Darnell had a flavorful dish, it lacked &ldquoGreek-iness.&rdquo It was interesting that Chef Darnell only used chicken legs and the judges didn&rsquot focus on that fact. How are chicken legs the whole chicken? Shouldn&rsquot that reduce his score?

Chef Tiffani was criticized because the judges could not taste the randomizer in the dish. But, looking at all of her components, she had creative applications. From using different parts of the chicken to the full flavor, her dish was successful.

With a score of 85 to 80, Chef Darnell beat Chef Tiffani. This result was somewhat confusing. In some ways, Tiffani worked the randomizer better, but her efforts were not rewarded. Maybe there is concern that another all-woman chef semi-final would not make for an interesting bracket battle.

For the second battle, Chef Maneet Chauhan took on Christian Petroni. It was another re-match, but no one was expecting a different outcome. In many ways, it might have been Chef Maneet&rsquos battle to lose.

The randomizer offered pork belly, shitake mushrooms, French press, Western European and 35 minutes. Did anyone find it odd that Guy Fieri hit the randomizer to get it &ldquounstuck&rdquo Why didn&rsquot he spin it again? Isn&rsquot there a &ldquorule&rdquo or &ldquoruling&rdquo in this scenario?

The dishes saw Chef Christian&rsquos cassolet versus Chef Mannet&rsquos glazed pork belly stroganoff. While both chefs incorporated all the components, they were very different. Even more interesting, it was a dish that didn&rsquot include her signature spices. In some ways, the dish was quite subdued.

While the dishes were good, they were not extremely innovative or exciting. Compared to other battles, it was just ok. If either of these dishes were part of the previous round, these chefs might not have had a chance at the semi-finals.

In the end, Chef Maneet beat Chef Christian with a score of 83 to 80. Again, it was just a little lackluster. With all the impressive dishes from earlier rounds, Food Network fans wanted a little more.

For the last battle, it was definitely the most creative and entertaining dishes of the evening. As Chef Antonia LoFaso took on Chef Jet Tila, everyone was waiting to see the unexpected outcome. There was something brewing in the Food Network kitchen.

The randomizer provided Dungeness crab, kumquats, spaetzle maker, North African and 30 minutes. This set of ingredients could go in a variety of ways and the two chefs had very different approaches. Chef Antonia went with a crab cake and Chef Jet served a fried crab.

While both dishes had amazing flavors and interesting techniques, Chef Jet used the spaetzle maker correctly. Chef Antonia used it to steam dates. That concept seemed to not use the kitchen tool in the best possible way.

Even as the judges commented on the two dishes, they seemed torn. Both dishes were equally impressive. That statement is a little more telling than it seems.

As the scores were revealed, there was an exact tie. Not only was the total the same but the individual scores were too. To say that this outcome was shocking is an understatement.

Even though this outcome is a total fluke, the strange part is that there is no tie breaker or recount or something. Making the two chefs battle again is crazy. Why wasn&rsquot there some type of tie-breaker? Maybe a new rule will go in place for Season 3.

With the Tournament of Champions finale next week, Food Network fans should expected more unexpected. If you have money on Brooke Williamson retaining her belt, you might want to make sure that you can pay off that gamble.

What did you think of the tie outcome in Tournament of Champions? Was this scenario the really possible?

Menus from the Masters Champions Dinner

Here is a sampling of Champions Dinner fare (the source for most of the pre-2000 menus listed below is a 1999 article in The Augusta Chronicle by Emily Sollie):

Tiger Woods, 2020: Steak and chicken fajitas, sushi and sashimi, milkshakes.

Patrick Reed, 2019: A choice of Caesar salad or wedge salad to start, with the main dish a prime bone-in cowboy ribeye with herb butter (mountain trout also available for those who prefer fish). Side dish options: macaroni and cheese, creamed corn, creamed spinach, steamed broccoli. Dessert choices: tiramisu, vanilla bean creme brulee, chocolate crunch and praline cheesecake.

Sergio Garcia, 2018: Garcia's menu began with an "International salad," with ingredients chosen to represent the countries of past Masters champions. The entree was arroz caldoso de bogavante, a traditional Spanish lobster rice. And for desert, Garcia chose his mother's recipe for tres leches cake, served with tres leches ice cream.

Danny Willett, 2017: The Englishman chose a traditional British meal. Willett's menu started with mini cottage pies (similar to shepherd's pie but made with beef rather than lamb). The entree: a traditional "Sunday roast" ((prime rib, roasted potatoes and vegetables, Yorkshire pudding). For dessert, apple crumble and vanilla custard. And a finish of coffee and tee with English cheese and biscuits, plus a selection of wines.

Jordan Spieth, 2016: Salad of local greens main course of Texas barbecue (beef brisket, smoked half chicken, pork ribs) sides of BBQ baked beans, bacon and chive potato salad, sauteed green beans, grilled zucchini, roasted yellow squash dessert of warm chocolate chip cookie, vanilla ice cream.

Bubba Watson, 2015: Watson served the same menu he did in 2013.

Adam Scott, 2014: Surf-and-turf on the grill, including Moreton Bay 'bugs' (lobster). Started with an appetizer of artichoke and arugula salad with calamari. The main course of Australian Wagyu beef New York Strip steak, served with Moreton Bay lobster, sauteed spinach, onion cream mashed potatoes. Desserts of strawberry and passion fruit pavlova, Anzac biscuit and vanilla sundae.

Bubba Watson, 2013: Traditional caesar salad to start. Entree of grilled chicken breast with sides of green beans, mashed potatoes, corn, macaroni, and cheese, served with cornbread. Dessert of confetti cake and vanilla ice cream.

Charl Schwartzel, 2012: An opening course consisting of a chilled seafood bar, which includes shrimp, lobster, crabmeat, crab legs, and oysters. The main course is a "braai," a South African barbecue, which includes lamb chops, steaks, and South African sausages. Dessert of vanilla ice cream sundae. Also in the mix are salads, cheeses, plus sides such as sauteed sweet corn, green beans, and Dauphinoise potatoes.

Phil Mickelson, 2011: A Spanish-themed menu with seafood paella and machango-topped filet mignon as the entrees. Also includes a salad course, asparagus, and tortillas as sides, plus ice cream-topped apple empanada for dessert.

Angel Cabrera, 2010: An Argentine asado, a multicourse barbecue featuring chorizo, blood sausage, short ribs, beef filets and mollejas (the thymus gland, aka sweetbreads).

Trevor Immelman, 2009: Bobotie (a spiced minced meat pie with an egg topping), sosaties ( a type of chicken skewer), spinach salad, milk tart and South African wines.

Zach Johnson, 2008: Iowa beef, Florida shrimp.

Phil Mickelson, 2007: Barbecued ribs, chicken, sausage and pulled pork, with cole slaw.

Tiger Woods, 2006: Stuffed jalapeno and quesadilla appetizers with salsa and guacamole green salad steak fajitas, chicken fajitas, Mexican rice, refried beans apple pie and ice cream for dessert.

Phil Mickelson, 2005: Lobster ravioli in tomato cream sauce, Caesar's salad, garlic bread.

Mike Weir, 2004: Elk, wild boar, Arctic char (that's a fish), Canadian beer.

Tiger Woods, 2003: Tiger brought back the porterhouse steak, chicken, and sushi from his 2002 menu. Also on the menu were sashimi, salads, crab cakes, asparagus, mashed potatoes and a chocolate truffle cake.

Tiger Woods, 2002: Porterhouse steak and chicken with a sushi appetizer.

Vijay Singh, 2001: Seafood tom kah, chicken panang curry, baked sea scallops with garlic sauce, rack of lamb with yellow kari sauce, baked filet Chilean sea bass with three flavor chili sauce, lychee sorbet.

Mark O'Meara, 1999: Chicken fajitas, steak fajitas, sushi, tuna sashimi.

Tiger Woods, 1998: Cheeseburgers, chicken sandwiches, french fries, milkshakes.

Nick Faldo, 1997: Fish and chips, tomato soup.

Ben Crenshaw, 1996: Texas barbecue.

Jose Maria Olazabal, 1995: Paella (a Spanish rice dish) and hake (whitefish), plus tapas.

Bernhard Langer, 1994: Turkey and dressing, black forest torte.

Fred Couples, 1993: Chicken cacciatore.

Sandy Lyle, 1989: Haggis, mashed potatoes, mashed turnips.

Bernhard Langer, 1986: Wiener schnitzel (breaded veal).

(*Haggis is a Scottish specialty. Take sheep organs - heart, liver, and lungs - and mince. Add minced suet, oatmeal, and onions, and boil the whole mixture inside a sheep's stomach.)

Breakfast of Champions

3 on-the-go power breakfast recipes to fuel your day.

3 on-the-go power breakfast recipes to fuel your day.

When Olympians plan what they&aposll eat in the morning, they rarely call it breakfast. "They look at it as a pre-training meal or pre-competition meal," explains Liz Applegate, Ph.D., senior lecturer in the University of California at Davis nutrition department and author of the Encyclopedia of Sports and Fitness Nutrition (Three Rivers Press, 2002). But elite or amateur, all athletes need to eat something, says Applegate.

In general, active people should have a breakfast that provides about 500 calories, provided you have two full hours to digest before your workout, says Nancy Clark, R.D., author of Nancy Clark&aposs Sports Nutrition Guidebook (4th edition Human Kinetics, 2008). If you&aposre eating en route to a workout, go for a pre-workout snack in the range of 100 to 150 calories.

No matter what your sport or your fitness level, your morning meal should be rich in carbohydrates, such as whole grains and fruits. Carbohydrates raise your blood sugar, which fuels your muscles and brain, explains Monique Ryan, R.D., author of Sports Nutrition for Endurance Athletes (2nd edition Velo Press, 2007). Eating carbs also helps to replenish glycogen, the form of carbohydrate that your body stores and, during extended exercise, breaks down into glucose. Including a bit of lean protein, which is important for building and repairing muscles, and healthy fats (like the monounsaturated kinds in peanut butter and the omega-3s in salmon) can help give the meal more staying power-but you don&apost want to overdo it either, says Ryan. Too much can slow you down by shunting your energy into digestion. What&aposs more, notes Applegate: runners should avoid a big meal, big fiber loads or anything that can cause intestinal stress as it jostles around.

Even if you are not in training, "consider breakfast a good opportunity to fit in some nutritious foods you might find harder to get later in the day," says Clark. Our answer? Recipes for three on-the-go power breakfasts that can fuel your day.

Smoked salmon and egg whites on a toasted whole-wheat English muffin is the perfect power breakfast. For a more substantial meal, pair it with a piece of fruit or a glass of 100% juice.

This carbohydrate-rich bar, full of nuts, seeds, fruit and oats, was adapted from Amy Harrison&aposs prize-winning submission in the Plains (Georgia) Peanut Festival recipe competition. It includes a little protein, and is a great grab-and-go pre-workout snack on mornings when you don&apost have time to digest a full meal.

This meal-in-a-glass smoothie is bursting with berries and orange juice, healthful sources of carbohydrate and powerful antioxidants. Getting plenty of antioxidant-rich foods makes sense for active people, since free radicals are produced any time the body&aposs cells process oxygen.

Insanely Easy Weeknight Dinners For April

Every week, we're delivering five easy-to-make, insanely delicious dinners, so you can put that takeout habit on hold.

All salads should include buffalo sauce.

This is probably THE simplest recipe . ever?

These shrimp and pineapple tacos will make you feel like you're sitting on the beach.

A little extra cheese never hurt anybody. 😅

Are we sure these aren't deep fried?

Your Taco Tuesday just got so much better.

It's the BEST way to use leftover ham.

Feel good about these bites.

Toasting the pepper in butter is a total game changer.

You will not miss the hash browns.

Get your bacon, egg and cheese on.

Instant ramen is good for way more than just soup.

There is no limit to what you can add to a frittata.

The breakfast (or dinner) of champions.

Chicken and waffles are the perfect comfort food.

Eating vegetables doesn't have to be boring!

So many layers of goodness!

This chicken soup is the easiest way to warm up.

Enchilada Meatballs are our newest obsession.

Quesadilla + hot dog = quesadoga!

Feel free to customize the toppings, but take our word for it&mdashthe sesame pickled cucumbers are a must.

Satisfy the craving, but skip the guilt.

You'll want to make it every single night.

Who wants to spend hours slow cooking a pork shoulder in the crock pot? Not us! Or you!

The spice rub gives them the perfect kick.

You don&rsquot need to make your own tostada shells, but I promise you it&rsquos worth it.

Low-carb, keto-friendly, AND is breakfast heaven.

Here to make your weekday 1,000x better.

Dreaming of summer days? This pineapple shrimp (in pineapple bowls, duh) is always fitting.

The only thing better than pizza? Pizza burgers. Mozzarella, pepperoni, and garlic butter rolls = 😋

Pairs great with whatever wine you have leftover from making the sauce&mdashperhaps a nice Sauvignon Blanc?

Somehow it's even BETTER reheated and makes for a great packed lunch.

Seasoned with thyme and paprika, they&rsquore fall-off-the-bone tender AND come complete with a silky, flavorful gravy.

This one's a light but protein-packed dinner that comes together in a single pan. Plus, it's a guilt-free version of a classic we already know and love.

It's got bacon, blue cheese, and avocado. aka ALL our favorite things.

This week, we've got dessert for ya! One bite of these will transport you to the beach, piña colada in hand.

Breakfast for dinner = treat yoself.

A delicious low-carb meal you can feel good about.

A side that will go with ANYTHING you make tonight.

Homemade herb mayo really makes this the best sandwich ever, and you won't regret a single bite.

Roasted chickpeas and creamy yogurt dill sauce make it unforgettable.

Definitely a departure from your typical 'za toppings, but IT'S SO GOOD.

We have not stopped thinking about the sauce since.

Need a mid-week tropical vacation? These will do the trick!

It barely counts as cooking (and it&rsquos incredibly delicious). Talk about a win, win.

No joke, the Delish team went absolutely crazy over this. The secret? A 2:1 ratio of ricotta to Parmesan.

Tournament of Champions review: And then there were four

Tournament of Champions has proven to be must watch food TV for the Food Network. As the celebrity chefs have battled each other and the randomizer, this cooking competition is completely entertaining. While everyone thought that they had the competition predicted prior to the first battle, the top four chefs could have been the best outcome. Does anyone have an edge in this competition?

In last week&rsquos episode, one of the top four chefs was determine. Antonia LoFaso took down Beau MacMallin. So far, Antonia has been a force in this competition. It will be interesting to see if she can continue that cooking domination.

Before the remaining battles began, there is an interesting outcome that could happen. Based on the brackets, an all-female top four was a possibility. That scenario would be a huge statement for Tournament of Champions and the Food Network.

In the first battle, Darnell Ferguson took on Amanda Freitag. After his crushing defeat of Alex Guarnaschelli, Darnell had some confidence going into this battle. Tournament of Champions has been a huge opportunity for him.

For this battle, the randomizer gave an uncommon ingredient to the chefs, nopales. The randomizer included rack of lamb, nopales, tortilla press and Mediterranean and 50 minutes. The nopales were definitely a curve ball. Not too many people use cactus in their cooking.

Competitor Amanda Freitag with host Guy Fieri, as seen on Tournament of Champions, Season 1. photo provided by Food Network

Looking at the two dishes, the approaches were very, very different. Amanda included an abundance of dishes. As the judges commented, it was almost the kitchen sink approach. This idea might have backfired.

In her dish, there was a Tahini pomegranate rack of lamb with hummus. While Amanda used all the required elements, the judges commented that the dish was muddled. Even more discouraging, the dish was called ugly. No one, especially an accomplished chef wants to hear that her dish is ugly.

Darnell had a more restrained approach. His Morrocan rubbed lamb with a nopales salsa was lovely. Although, the judges felt that the dish was too lamb-centric. It needed more sauce to balance the big lamb chop.

Unfortunately, Darnell made a huge mistake. His dish left out the fry bread, which used the required tortilla press. That mistake was a game changer.

In the end, Amanda beat Darnell, thanks to the missing fry bread. Even with the missing element, the battle was close. If Darnell hadn&rsquot forgotten the fry bread, he would have won.

For the next battle, Maneet Chauhan took on Christian Petroni. In many ways, Maneet&rsquos style of cooking is suited for Tournament of Champions. Her flavorful, layered, fusion dishes can work with a variety of ingredients and cooking styles. Could she be the ultimate champion?

The Tournament of Champions randomizer gave the chefs Flanken short ribs, pomegranate, tagine pot, Carribbean and 45 minutes. This combination was definitely a cruel joke. Luckily the chefs took the challenge in stride.

In a way, this challenge was Maneet&rsquos to win. Given the flavors, style and ingredients, she just needed to execute. Too bad that Food Network doesn&rsquot offer smell-o-vision. It would have been wonderful to smell cooking and ultimately taste her dish.

Maneet made a ropa vieja with a saffron biryana. The judges commented that there was great acid that carried through the dish. Not only was this dish fun, but it was engaging. Those little pomegranate seeds were like hidden jewels throughout the dish.

Christian chose to make jerk Flanken short ribs. The best part of his dish was the hard sear on the short ribs. While the dish was very balanced, there was a question about his plantains. The texture was not right, which brought the dish down some.

The winning chef was Maneet. With her win, a female chef is guaranteed to be in the final. Could a female chef be crowned Tournament of Champions winner?

For the final battle, there is a last man standing, literally. Jet Tila is the only male chef left in the competition, a situation that doesn&rsquot happen often on Food Network competitions.

Jet took on Brooke Williamson. In her last battle, Brooke took down Michael Voltaggio. Her food is quite impressive.

Competitor Brooke Williamson, as seen on Tournament of Champions, Season 1. photo provided by Food Network

Again, the randomizer created a complicated task. Who puts salmon, bitter melon, meat grinder and Middle Eastern into a dish? This set of ingredients is far more difficult than any Chopped Challenge.

Jet looked to impress the judges with a difficult technique. His stuffed salmon had a perfectly executed pocket, which showed amazing technique. The dish was good, but the judges felt that it was under seasoned. That statement is never a good sign for a chef.

After taking a while to determine her direction, Brooke pulled out an amazing dish. Her roasted salmon with a near perfect sear was placed atop a flavorful ragu. The use of herbs with the bitter melon was highly praised.

In another convincing win, Brooke took down Jet. No matter who wins in the semi-finals, a female chef will be the Tournament of Champions winner.

Looking ahead to next week, the battle to watch will be Antonia versus Brooke. The battle of the Top Chefs could predict the final champion.

Who do you predict will be the Tournament of Champions winner? Did anyone predict an all female chef top four?

5. Pesto burrito

2 whole eggs
1 1/2 tsp nonfat Greek yogurt
1/4 cup shredded reduced-fat cheddar cheese
Cooking spray
2 tbsp finely chopped onion
1 1/2 tsp prepared pesto sauce
3 grape tomatoes, sliced
1 slice turkey bacon
1 10-inch flour tortilla
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup grapes

1) Beat the eggs in a bowl with the yogurt until blended, and then stir in the cheddar.

2) Spray a skillet with cooking spray and place over medium heat. Add the onion and pesto sauce and cook until the onion is translucent.

3) Add the tomatoes to the pesto and onion and stir. Now pour the egg mixture into the skillet. Cook and stir until the eggs are cooked, about 3 minutes. Transfer everything from the skillet and set aside.

4) Place the turkey bacon in the skillet and fry until thoroughly cooked and starting to crisp. When the bacon is done, remove from the pan.

5) Respray the skillet and place the tortilla onto it. Heat until it’s warm. Remove to a plate.

6) Spoon the eggs and turkey bacon into the tortilla’s center and season wit h salt and pepper. Fold the bottom 2 inches of the tortilla up to enclose the filling and wrap tightly. Serve with grapes on the side.

687 calories, 34g protein, 70g carbs, 32g fat

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About Me

If you don’t know me already, or are new to the site, let me tell you a little about myself.

I’m the host and creator of my own YouTube cooking series called “TheJoshElkin”, where I show you how to re-create some of my crazy and delicious Insta-approved meals. You can catch me on Facebook doing live gaming streams and concocting gamer-approved snack foods. I also have a successful Instagram account, where I post daily about all my food adventures (and sometimes my personal life!).

I was the host of Sugar Showdown on the Cooking Channel, a contestant on various Food Network properties such as: Chopped, Guy’s Grocery Games, Cutthroat Kitchen and Cooks Vs. Cons. I was also a founding member of Epic Meal Time, the most-viewed internet cooking show of its time.

I’m a completely self-taught chef, I love experimenting with flavour combinations and aesthetics to see what they yield. I’m so excited to be able to go on this exploration of food with the world and my fans alike. I know there’s many recipe sites out there, so thanks for stopping by mine, and I hope you leave with a full belly and a bigger imagination for what your food can be!

Tournament of Champions recap: Did the randomizer seem less random?

During the three first battles Tournament of Champions Season 2, the outcome seemed a little more predictable than expected. Although busted brackets might be on everyone&rsquos mind, this season might be more about the top seeds going through than being set home. Did the randomizer become the predictor?

With the Tournament of Champions Season 2 Wild Card rounds complete, the number eight seeds faced the number one seeds. While the first week of main bracket competitions included two West battles and one East battle, the three culinary competitions seemed slightly more subdue than the Wild Card rounds.

For the first battle, Antonia LoFaso took on Brian Malarkey. In what seemed to be part of a trend for this Tournament of Champions recap, it was a former Top Chef rematch.

As has been seen previously, Malarkey was his boisterous self. While his dish had some impressive elements, it was chaotic. Too many elements needed to be edited. Still, Malarkey&rsquos tip about adding some lard to a cauliflower puree is a great one. It might make people more interested in cauliflower puree.

At the same time, Chef Antonia seemed to find ingredients that fit directly into her wheelhouse. Whether it was the use of the skewer or the flavor profile, her dish seemed like it could be right off her menu.

With the scores revealed, Chef Antonia moved onto the quarterfinals. While nothing is guaranteed, this match-up seemed stacked in Chef Antonia’s favor. No disrespect to Malarkey, but his unfocused plates often do not measure up in culinary competitions.

For the next round of this Tournament of Championship recap, the randomizer set the tone for not so random. With Darnell Ferguson pitted against Marc Murphy, the ingredients seemed skewed in Chef Darnell’s favor. As catfish came up for the main protein, it seemed that Chef Marc&rsquos was doomed, especially based on his reaction to catfish.

Looking at the two chef&rsquos dishes, the plates were on opposite planes. Chef Marc&rsquos classical inspired dish had lovely components, but it was clear that he wasn&rsquot playing to the randomizer. From his turned turnips to the pan sauteed catfish, there were many nods to classic cuisine but a less attempt to pander to the randomizer.

On the other hand, Chef Darnell seemed to have a dish ready in his knife roll. The idea of a Nashville fried catfish seemed kismet for this challenge.

During this Tournament of Champions episode, there seemed to be a nod to both Chopped and Triple G. Just like every Chopped basket has a riddle, it almost seemed that the randomizer had a riddle to solve, too. Were the judges looking for a fried catfish that was blackened (or something close to it) with a turnip slaw?

Based on the ingredients and the better solving of the randomizer, Chef Darnell moved onto the next round. In some ways, the Chef Marc outcome felt like the lack of love that Elizabeth Faulkner received in the Wild Card rounds. Could this idea become the story of Tournament of Champions Season 2?

For the final battle, many people wondered if Brooke Williamson versus Nyesha Arrington would become the Alex Guarnaschelli upset of Tournament of Champions Season 2. Chef Nyesha seemed poised to make a big showing.

As the randomizer revealed the ingredients and the chefs began to compose their dishes, it was quite curious that both dishes were very, very similar. The pomegranate glazed lamb chops were two slightly different takes on the same dish. Maybe the two friends are psychically connected.

Both dishes would have probably won over other chefs. In reality, these two dishes were probably the most creative and difficult ones of the night.

As the judges commented on the dishes, it was curious that Chef Brooke&rsquos slightly over lamb did not receive as much criticism as Chef Nyesha&rsquos dish. While the judges were quite impressed with Brooke&rsquos dish, even taking the plates with them as they left, the reality was it wasn&rsquot perfect.

Nyesha&rsquos dish was quite good, too. In some ways, it just came down to personal preference.

Since only one chef could move on, Chef Brooke retained her title and survived a first round upset. Although the final battle was probably the most exciting of the evening, it still felt a little more predictable that the previous Tournament of Champions season.

While next week&rsquos Tournament of Champions Season 2 might bring more unpredictable outcomes, the reality is that an upset is good for this Food Network show. Which battle will bring that &ldquoupset&rdquo remains to be seen, but the Cat Cora versus Michael Voltaggio battle seems to be the highlight (based on Food Network clips). Maybe the randomizer will show some less randomness next week, too. Everyone will have to wait and see.

What do you think of this Tournament of Champions Season 2? Do you think that the randomizer has been a little too helpful?

Watch the video: Champions of Happy - (May 2022).