Viewing Guide to Iron Chef 2001
Note by Chief
This program was broadcast on January 2nd, 2001. In Japan, New Years Day is a very special holiday. It's almost like Thanksgiving and Christmas in US combined into one. It is customary to take three days off from work.
Everybody stays home and quietly celebrates New Years Day. Almost all stores are closed, of course (except Seven Eleven!). We have special meals These meals are not cooked on New Years Day (you're not supposed to work) but are prepared on December 31. It's practical, too, since stores close and you cannot buy anything. These meals consists of non-perishable dishes. Tai (red snapper) and Ise-ebi (lobsters) or prawns are part of these dishes. We rarely go outside, except to make a visit to our local shrines and temples. The day is supposed to be very quiet with not much activities.
On January 2, we visit our relatives. Also, this is the day when we are supposed to "commence". If you have a hobby (say, music, painting, etc), you go visit your teacher and take the first lesson of year. Along this line, Fuji TV intentionally chose January 2nd to air the show. It is the day to begin cooking for the new year (and more, for the new century).
Now the program. The time is from the beginning of the show as zero. The name (or source) follows the time.
There is one task left for me at the beginning of the 21st century - To find the recipe that represents the 21st century. My first job to find two challengers.
Today's guests are
Actor Takanori Jin-nai
Actress Kumito Akiyoshi (Note by Chief - she's known to be an air-head)
Gold Medalist in Judo from Sydney, Tadahiro Nomura
Lower House member, Nobuteru Ishihara
And our commentator, Dr Hattori
I'm curious to see what represents the recipe of the 21st century. Let us recall our Iron Chefs.
Now recall our Honorary Iron Chefs
Yutaka Ishinabe (French I)
Koh-Mei Nakamura (Japanese II)
Rokusaburo Michiba (Japanese I)
There have been so many offers to be a challenger for today's show. I chose the man who claimed he was reborn. Please welcome Toshiro Kandagawa
What is his headgear?
Welcome back and nice meeting you again. Anyway, what is this hat? (and removed the headgear to reveal the shaved head)
May I touch?
Do not lose!
I shaved my head to show my determination to win this battle.
(Note by Chief: Shaving head and losing hair (and looking funny) is a traditional Japanese way to show your determination by sacrificing your vanity)
Kandagawa's Hair-Cutting Ceremony
I can't lose to Kandagawa-San
Today's theme ingredient is 15 Tai (red snappers)
(14:15) Miss Tomoyo Abe (reporter for Kandagawa)
In the food processor, yogurt and sake lees
(15:00) On screen
Seafood 12 wins, no losses
Meat 11 wins, 4 losses
Vegetables 11 wins, 3 losses
Note: A friend of mine pointed this out - Often you hear Sakai referred to as "Mushuu Sakai" (there was a banner, too). That's French! "Monsier Sakai"
(17:00) On Screen
The previous battle of lotus root in 1995 resulted in Sakai's victory
(17:30) Kandagawa report
In the pot, prawns, shrimps, pork fat, ground pork, konbu (seaweed), minced tai meat. Kandagawa added "this is going to be the world broth"
(19:30) Sakai report
Mr Sakai said "I think French cuisine came to an end at the end of the 20th century, and I'm going to develop a new French cuisine with Asian taste" (his soup broth had consommee and shan ton (Chinese))
(21:30) Kandagawa report
The salt-crusted Tai has de-boned tai whose inside is coated with yogurt, sake reeves and is filled with prawns, abalone, and fugu shirako.
(24:30) Kandagawa report
This knife is prepared just for today and is priceless.
(28:45) Chen Ken-ichi
Kandagawa-san's World Broth was based on Chinese shan ton and he added quite a few more ingredients. Very well-planned. (Asked which side is ahead), I'm glad I'm not on it.
(29:15) Kandagawa report
He just added sake. The broth is not ready yet
(29:45) Sakai report
There are two wrap items. One is wrapped in radish. The other is raw tai meat wrapped in potato.
(32:00) Kandagawa report
In this pot, we have water, rice, soy sauce, sake, and a whole Tai.
Yes, this is ready (about his World Broth)
(35:30) Sakai report
In the bowl, Japanese cabbage, broiled tai, and truffles
On the base of Japanese cabbage, tai and clams are placed
Into the soup, rice cake (mochi) was added
(42:00) Kandagawa report
I'm very satisfied with today's cooking. I think I succeeded in opening a new era in Japanese cuisine
(42:45) Sakai report
On this the 21st century, I looked forward to Asian taste. I think I did a perfect job.
(45:00) Tasting - Kandagawa
1st dish = World Broth soup
Kandagawa - we don't usually start with soup in Japanese cuisine
Jin-nai - With so many ingredients, it still tastes tai!
Ishihara - The taste is something I've never had before. Mysterious.
2nd dish = Salad of tai sashimi with "ohba" dressing
Hosoki - This is very unusual with a slight vinegar flavor.
3rd dish = salt-crusted tai with World Broth dip
Jan-nai - So Mr Kaga has been eating such wonderful stuff every week?
Akiyoshi - it melts in my mouth
4th dish = rice cooked with tai, served with World Broth
Jin-nai - I'm speechless. Never had anything so tasty. Considering you must use tai, you provided such a wide variety of flavors. I'm impressed, and discovered new respect for a world-class chef. This cooking taught me how an actor should be.
(50:30) Tasting - Sakai
1st dish = Frit (?) of tai and truffles with "nanohana sauce"
Akiyoshi - Different from what I expected. Nice bitterness
Ishihara - A deviation from previous approach by Sakai-san
2nd dish = rice porrige a la Iron Chef
3rd dish = tai and Japanese cabbage's ethnic pottofu (?stew)
Hosoki - Sakai-san, this is delicious
4th dish - wrapped tai (two items)
Ishihara - Interesting taste. It's spicy but then you taste sweetness. Very adventurous.
(55:45) On screen
Replay from the 1995 match
Jin-nai Sakai 17 - Kandagawa 20
Akiyoshi Sakai 19 - Kandagawa 20
Norura Sakai 18 - Kandagawa 19
Ishihara Sakai 17 - Kandagawa 18
Hosoki Sakai 17 - Kandagawa 19
The second challenger is Bobby Flay. He had the well-fought battle in last Spring in New York City but he was electrocuted. Furthermore, he stood on a cutting board. However, the result was a sweep by Morimoto. It appeared that it was settled. However, Bobby started to complain to American media. If that's the case, I want to see what he really is and chose him as the second challenger.
To keep him from saying "unfair" anymore, we even added Akebono, the grand champion (yokozuna) of Sumo Wrestling. [Note: He is an American and the first foreigner to achieve the rank of Yokozuna. Sadly, he suffers from chronic injuries and had to withdraw from the January tornament (Jan. 7-21), and subsequently announced his retirement on January 22, 2001]
Morimoto will open his own restaurant this Spring.
(1:10:00) Morimoto report
Morimoto said "I'll do my best. About Bobby, let us play our best and play fair. No more complaints."
(1:10:20) Flay report
Flay said "If we play fair, I can definitely win"
Morimoto is tossing lobsters into a keg of sake. This is usually done for prawns to make "drunken prawns".
There are American lobsters, but they taste different. These Japanese lobsters are sweet.
Today's guests are
actress Miho Kan-no
yokozuna Akebono-Zeki (yokozuna is the rank, and zeki is the title)
actor Ryuta Mine
commentator Dr Yukio Hattori
(1:13:30) Morimoto report
The frying pan contains lobster, octopus, olive oil, and abalone
(1:14:30) Morimoto report
Morimoto said "Japanese like soy sauce, and I think we relied on it too much. In order to develop new recipes, I am not going to use soy sauce today"
I met some foreigners who thought we had too much soy sauce, so it's an interesting approach. Morimoto-san will make use of salt today.
(1:15:30) Morimoto report
We have Gorgonzola cheese and cream in the pan
(1:16:00) Flay report
In the bowl, we have mustard, honey, and horse radish
(1:18:00) Flay report
Kobe beef. (from Matsusaka)
(1:19:15) Morimoto report
Lobster meat with lobster innards, and the cause is cod sperm-organ (don't know the name) and tarako (cod roe)
(1:19:30) Flay report
Lobster coated with blue corn powder, to be opened later and Flay calls it "butterfly"
(1:20:00) Flay report
Flay complains that the burner flames out easily and he cannot control the intensity.
(1:23:30) Morimoto report
Grinding salt. BDJ said "is he trying to add mineral (iron) to salt by using an iron grinder?". Others replied "no way", but Ohta then reports "Miss Kan-no is right. By using an iron grinder, you add a small amount of iron to salt"
(1:25:00) Morimoto report
Mochi (rice cake). Small cubes
(1:26:30) Morimoto report
Preparing sushi rice
(1:27:00) Ishinabe (Iron Chef French I)
Flay uses many different kinds of pepper to balance out the taste.
(1:27:30) Flay report
In the bowl, red onion, olive oil, pepper, lobster, lime juice, lemon juice and coconut milk
(1:27:45) Morimoto report
Morimoto said about Flay's dishes, "if he uses too much spice, he'll lose the subtle flavor of lobster. He'd better be careful"
(1:28:00) Flay report
Flay said "I think the loss by Sakai added some pressure on Morimoto. Iron Chefs can't lose back to back, right?"
I think Morimoto is doing fine - lobster and salt go together really nicely. "Morimoto-san, it's a must win!"
(1:28:45) Morimoto report
Lobster was soaked in the vinegar which is now used in this sushi rice, so sushi rice has lobster flavor
(1:31:10) Morimoto report
White truffles and lobster meat, to be wrapped in konbu (seaweeds)
(1:36:30) Flay report
Flay is all done, and now is drinking sake
(1:37:15) Flay report
The reporter asked "are you going to stand on a cutting board", and Flay replied "I don't know yet"
(1:37:30) Morimoto report
To the above comment by Flay, Morimoto said "A chef should never abuse his tools. It's unthinkable"
(1:39:30) Morimoto interview
Ohta "In New York, you were upset about Bobby standing on the cutting board"
Morimoto "It's the same today."
Ohta "But Bobby removed the cutting board"
Morimoto "It's still the same. You do the cooking on the benchtop. With or without the cutting board, it's the same"
Ohta "So what you think of Bobby"
Morimoto "Oh I like him a lot
Tasting - Flay
The panel is
Actor Ryuta Mine
Actress Miho Kan-no
Head something of American Embassy to Japan, Christopher J Le Fleur (?)
Culinary writer Asako Kishi
1st dish = Spicy marinated lobster with coconut milk and avocado
Mine - Just the right amount of spiciness
Kishi - Despite so much spices, you can still taste lobster. Very well done
2nd dish - lobster fruit salad with hot sauce
3rd dish - boiled lobster, Mexican style (Tamari)
"Please do not eat the corn peel"
Akebono - Corn is our (American) main staple, just like rice is to Japanese.
Le Fleur - It's based on the traditional recipe but Flay created something new
4th dish - Butterfly, mango and carrot sauce
Akebono - Delicious
Kishi - This would seem too complicated a way to eat lobster, to Japanese, but Flay showed us a new way to cook lobsters.
5th dish - Surf and Turf (sauce is dijon mustard, horse radish, honey)
Le Fluer - Very classy
Kishi - Flay did his homework and studied Japanese ingredients very well
Tasting - Morimoto
1st dish = Drunken Lobster, served with Japanese lime and salt
Kan-no - It's soooo good
Akebono - This is Japanese!
Mine - Delicious
2nd dish - three appetizers
Kan-no - It's refreshing to taste raw lobster after eating Flay's cooked lobster
3rd dish = sushi roll, fried and served with cheese sauce
Le Fleur - Is this your original recipe, Mr Morimoto?
Morimoto - Yes, and this is the first time I ever made it.
Kan-no - It goes so well with the cheese sauce. Amazing.
Akebono - Yes, and you can do without soy sauce
4th dish = Shabu shabu (dip)
Le Fleur - The soup itself is so good that it's almost a waste to use as a shabu shabu dip
Kishi - My opinion is that we'll use more of fermented seasoning in 21st century, that is soy sauce and miso. Mr Morimoto went opposite of that trend and I admire his challenging spirit.
Kaga "We received the result. It is as clear as it can be, not like a Presidential election elsewhere. No more complaining after this"
Mine Morimoto 18 - Flay 17
Kan-no Morimoto 17 - Flay 18
Akebono Morimoto 19 - Flay 20
Le Fleur Morimoto 14 - Flay 17
Kishi Morimoto 15 - Flay 17
[Note by Chief: Kaga looked very unhappy about two losses by Iron Chefs]