Top Chef took its contestants out of the kitchen for a little fun in the sun with a fishing trip to Montauk, N.Y., this week. But of course there was a catch, pun intended. They had to reel in enough fish to serve to a group of 200 people later that night — and face a double elimination. Find out what castoff Jamie Lauren thought of the judges calling her dish too watery, why she was so shocked that she didn't get eliminated during the Chinatown challenge, and why she thought she got a bad edit this time around. Plus: See what she had to say about the tennis challenge!
What did you think of the judges' take on your dish?
Jamie Lauren: I don't honestly remember too much of what they said. I actually didn't watch it. I guess they didn't like it because it was too watered-down. I do remember Padma saying at judges table that she could drink that cucumber water for days, but they probably didn't show that either. I loved my dish. I thought it was a great dish.
Last week you looked pretty shocked that you weren't sent home. Why was that?
Jamie: In the dim sum challenge, my food sucked. I should have gone home. And I knew it wasn't good. I didn't want to serve it, but I had to because we had to serve to meet the criteria of the challenge. But those scallop dumplings were disgusting. I kept trying to fix them, but I couldn't figure out how to. They weren't good.
What was it like watching some of the other contestants make negative comments about you?
Jamie: I was there for a reason. I was there because I wanted to be there, and I was happy to be there. And there was a lot the viewers didn't get to see. I mean, that's really all I can say. I think I stopped watching, or stopped wanting to watch around the tennis challenge. I didn't watch that episode. But I heard what they were doing and what people were saying about me, and I was like, "I'm just not going to do that; it's not worth it to me."
Do you think you got a bad edit?
Jamie: I do, yes. Absolutely. And so did some of my castmates, so I'm not the only one who thinks so.
If there's anything you could do over, what would it be?
Jamie: For the dim sum challenge, I probably wouldn't have served what I served. And for the tennis challenge, I probably wouldn't have listened to my castmates about using dried chickpeas. I would have used canned ones and my dish would have been great. By the time I was up for service, my dish was great. And again, I didn't see the episode, but from what I hear, I was apparently hiding and didn't want to serve. That wasn't true. I was bending down because the pressure cooker was on the floor and I was stirring the chickpeas. My dish had great flavor and it probably could have helped the team win. It's just disappointing in the way it got shown. But whatever.