We had another brand new episode of ‘Iron Chef America’ last night. Chef Christopher Kostow challenged the loveliest of the Iron Chefs, our favorite Southern Belle, Cat Cora! The secret ingredient was the humblest of grains, oatmeal. Several varieties were at the chef’s disposal; steel-cut Irish, milled Scottish, rolled American and the ever popular Quick Oats.
Our judges for the evening were art designer Liliana Cavendish, Esquire magazine food editor Ryan D’agostra and TV food critic Nina Griscom. The Chairman was absent again, allowing Alton Brown to assume more host-type duties. The general consensus with the judges was that oatmeal would be a challenge, especially it making it a featured part of any dish, whereas it is usually takes a secondary role.
Chef Kostow served first, beginning with an oatmeal custard and a frisee salad. Dish #2 was oatmeal pudding with truffles. Dish #3 was deep fried cod coated in an oatmeal batter. Dish #4 was oatmeal with smoked goat. Finally, Dish #5 was a dessert of sweet oatmeal clusters with caramelized bananas.
Then Iron Chef Cora began her service with an oatmeal squid ink rissoto. Dish #2 was an oatmeal Pappardelle with a veal bolagnes to go with the oatmeal pasta. Dish #3 was roasted squab with oatmeal. Dish #4 was a duo of pork and oatmeal. First an oatmeal coated pork sausage with an oat-crusted pork tenderloin. Finally, Cat’s 5th Dish was also a dessert. Oat & Goat Milk Cake with goat milk ice cream.
Battle Oatmeal on ‘Iron Chef America’ was a hard fought and close affair. Chef Kostow beat Chef Cora by one single point. The score was 55 to 54 out of a possible 60 points. This goes to show the high level of cooking between Christopher Kostow and Cat Cora. Kostow finished with a 29/13/13 to Cat’s scoring of 27/13/14. One item the judges really wanted and never got was an oatmeal and raisin cookie. Yummo!