10 Chefs Compete
Season 5, Episode 7
Air date March 19, 2009
Eliminated J
Saved Lacey, Ben
Episode Guide
11 Chefs Compete
9 Chefs Compete

The seventh episode of Season 5 of Hell's Kitchen aired on FOX, on March 19, 2009. On that episode, a blue chef was reassigned to the red team, one chef threatened to quit the competition, and one chef did not make it through dinner service. 

Intro Edit

Back in the dorms, Andrea was still feeling the weight of being “Best of the Worst”, while Carol asked why Andrea did not nominate her. Andrea said she did not want to base her nominations on their argument and that Carol was a little stronger than LA. That comment did not sit well with LA, but Paula agreed with Andrea when the latter said that LA had not shown any passion in the last few services. Then, Carol believed that the red team was now divided into the pair of Andrea and Paula against the pair of LA and herself, and working together was getting harder.

Team switch Edit

The next morning, both teams went downstairs to see Ramsay, who had some dishes for them to taste. From his restaurant Mais in London, Ramsay had prepared salmon tapas, which were small dishes, but were fresh and vibrant. The chefs tasted the dishes and were very impressed with them. Ramsay then revealed that for their next challenge, they would be making five of their own tapas with leftovers, and the team with the most points would be the winners. Before they began the challenge, Ramsay said he had to even the teams up at five each, as the red team were down two chefs. Ramsay told Lacey that her performances have been getting better since she has been on the blue team so she would stay with them. Instead, Ramsay decided to move Giovanni over to the red team, and gave him a red jacket.

Team challenge Edit

Both teams had 20 minutes to make their tapas. Giovanni quickly integrated himself into his new team, and told a few of his teammates some of his suggestions, while hoping that the red team would finally get together as a team. Lacey struggled with an idea but Ben gave her a few suggestions on what she could do, though Robert stated he was starting to lose patience with Lacey. Eventually, both teams finished their dishes and plated them.

The first pair up was Danny against Paula. Paula served her peppered steak and eggs with tomatoes and shallots, which was deemed nice by Ramsay. Danny served a grilled filet mignon with a wild mushroom ragu, which was also praised. Ramsay gave a point to both of them, leaving the score tied at 1. Lacey and LA were up next. Lacey's mushroom bruschetta with balsamic vinegar had undercooked leeks, and LA's asparagus and ginger soup was also criticized for both looking and tasting like it came from the bottom of a dishwasher. Neither of them scored a point, and the score still remained tied at 1. The next pair was Robert against Carol. Carol's ginger rubbed salmon with leeks and a ginger soy reduction was dry, and Ramsay stated he never put soy sauce in either tray, and despite Robert's peppered pasta with pan seared lamb loin looked too big for a tapa dish, the flavours were spot on and Robert scored the point, making the score at 2-1 for the blue team. Andrea and J were up against next. Andrea’s open-faced lobster and asparagus ravioli had a boring presentation, but it had very good flavours, while J’s lobster with fennel and leek broth was too simple. Andrea scored for the red team, leaving the score a tie at 2 each. The final pair up was Giovanni against Ben. Ben's grilled tuna with fennel prawns sauce was deemed delicious, but Giovanni's surf and turf with beef and lobster was also deemed very good. After much thinking, Ramsay gave the point to Giovanni, and the red team won the challenge 3-2, but told Ben not to be too upset as that was the most difficult decision yet.

Reward Edit

The red team went to Hollywood parks to see a horse race with Ramsay. Carol congratulated Giovanni for clinching their victory, but Giovanni told the four women that they needed to put their animosity aside, so they could win services. At the horse track, the red team and Ramsay placed their bets, and Andrea’s horse beat out Ramsay’s by a close call.

Punishment Edit

The blue team had to prep both kitchens for that night’s service and polish the tapa plates, so they could use them. While the men were pushing to get both team’s stations ready, Lacey did not do a lot of work while complaining about the amount of work they had to do. When the tapa plates arrived, Lacey continued to annoy her teammates with questions, and Ben was starting to get annoyed with having to babysit her. Lacey's mistakes during prep finally angered Robert who called her out for her attitude and wanted her gone. Lacey threatened to quit if she would fight with anyone else, but J called her out on her decision, telling that if she wants to go, she could do it. Then, she left the blue kitchen and went to the dorms. While Danny, Robert and J did not care about Lacey's outburst, Ben, despite losing his patience, came up to the dorms and convinced her to stay since they needed her help, despite Lacey knowing that he said the same thing to her before.

Before service Edit

Five minutes before service, a positive Giovanni led the red team through the rest of prep. Once everyone was ready, Ramsay told Jean-Philippe to open Hell’s Kitchen.

Dinner service Edit

Carol sent up her risotto, but it had overcooked rice in it. It got worse when Ramsay saw that all of the red team’s rice was overcooked, and went to the blue kitchen to demand who cooked the rice during their punishment. J took the blame and it was soon revealed that the blue kitchen’s rice was also overcooked. With all the rice overcooked, Ramsay told Jean-Philippe that he had to take the risotto off the menu for that night, while yelling at J for screwing both teams up.

A half hour into service, and both teams were pushing out appetizers despite J’s mistake, but Carol’s pasta dish was sent back for being raw, and she blamed Andrea for that mistake. After finding out Carol did taste the pasta and sent it up despite being raw, Ramsay kicked both Carol and Andrea out of the kitchen into the dining room to eat their mistake. In the blue kitchen, J’s salmon dish was sent up raw, and Ramsay told J that everything he touched so far was screwed, with Robert even getting annoyed by J's problems. J’s next attempt was burnt and without sauce, and Ramsay took him to the pantry room to give him a wake up call. In the red kitchen, LA was unresponsive when Ramsay asked for the John Dory, and called her a silly cow. That angered LA, but became more responsive as a result.

Automatic EliminationEdit

In the blue kitchen, J sent up his scallops to the pass, but they were overcooked and rubbery. That was the final straw for Ramsay, and asked the entire team to touch them, before eliminating J on-the-spot and asking him to leave immediately. J left his jacket in the pantry room, packed his stuff in the dorms, and left the restaurant by the loading area, for a cab ride. This marked the second time Ramsay eliminated someone during dinner service, and the first time he did so during the team phase of the competition.

Two hours into service, and Ramsay told the blue team that they had to pick up the pace now that J was gone. So, he reassigned Robert to the fish station. The blue team quickly got together on where they were at, but Ramsay warned Ben that he was not rising up. Back in the red kitchen, Giovanni took the leadership role and called out orders and times, which LA was grateful for, and Ramsay was happy that they were sounding like a team finally. In the blue kitchen, Ben was slow on meat and sent up cold Wellingtons to the pass, causing Ramsay to order him to cook them in the convection oven. On the other hand, Paula's Wellingtons were perfectly cooked, and Ramsay called it the best one they served so far. Ben was still slow on the meat station, and Ramsay told him he personally wanted him gone, much to Ben's dismay. When Ramsay saw that Ben was putting Wellingtons on a dirty tray, he pulled him to the pantry room, called him a dirty pig and warned him to pick it up or he would be out like J.

Three hours into dinner service, and despite Ben's meat problems, the blue team pushed out their last entrées, while the red team was clearing down. Despite the blue team finishing, Robert knew that their morale was very low due to their struggles at the beginning. Meanwhile, Carol called out Andrea for the raw pasta incident, and another argument between the two of them erupted, until Paula told them to cut it out.

Post-mortem Edit

A stressed out Ramsay had both teams lined up, and announced that the blue team was the clear losers. Then, he ordered all of them to think of one person each for elimination. Back in the dorms, Ben apologized to his team for his terrible performance, but Danny was considering getting rid of Ben for his poor performances. Lacey had problems deciding who to send up, but Robert reminded Lacey of her threat to quit during punishment and has had enough of her attitude. This led to an argument where Robert accused her of giving up since the beginning and only cared about matters for her own convenience, which angered Lacey who considered to put Robert up. Robert also told Lacey he would become a crack whore if she would win the competition.

Elimination Edit

Ramsay asked each of the blue chefs who they wanted to see go home and why. Robert wanted Lacey gone as her earlier threat to quit angered him, as it showed she did not care, but Lacey said she wanted Robert gone since she did not get along with him. Danny said he wanted Lacey gone as he has had enough of her attitude, and Ben agreed with Danny as he felt Lacey was not a team player. After hearing their decisions, Ramsay called Lacey and Ben down to the front as Ben had the weakest performance that night, which Ben agreed with. After listening to their pleas, Ramsay, despite wanting Ben's jacket, sent both of them back in line, and gave them one more chance to improve. He then told the blue team to start working together. After that, J received the coat hanging and burning picture sequence.

Ramsay's comment: "I kept Ben and Lacey because J put the kitchen in such a hole that they never stood a chance. They're very lucky that I sent J packing."