The Taste Recap – Spicy Latin Cuisine Season 3 Episode 5

The Taste Recap - Spicy Latin Cuisine Season 3 Episode 5

On ABC tonight The Taste returns with another new Thursday January 8, season 3 episode 5 called “Latin,” and we have your weekly recap below. On tonight’s episode, a Latin-flavored show has contestants creating ceviche, tacos and more. Javier Plascencia is the guest mentor.

On last week’s episode, it was a new year and there was a new battle brewing in the kitchen when the remaining cooks were tasked with making delicious dishes bursting with decadent and elevated flavors with ingredients like champagne, shellfish and caviar. In the end, two more competitors were sent home. Did you watch the last episode? If you missed it we have a full and detailed recap, right here for you.

On tonight’s episode as per the ABC synopsis, “Bold, bright – and most of all – flavorful and spicy! It’s Latin week on ABC’s “The Taste” with the remaining competitors tasked with creating dishes like ceviche and tacos. With both a group and solo challenge ahead, in the end, two more cooks will be sent home.”

Don’t forget to join us for our live recap tonight at 8:00pm when The Taste Season 3 episode 5 returns to ABC. While you wait for the recap, let us know what you think of The Taste!

Tonight’s episode begins now – Refresh Page often to get the most current updates!

The mentors meet with their remaining team members to talk about their past and their culinary goals. There are nine contestants left and two will be going home tonight on a Latin challenge. Eric is excited and says he lived this. Anthony says this covers Mexico, Central and South American and tonight’s guest judge is Chef Javier Plascencia. Javier tells them to make sure their dishes taste great. Ludo wants them making broth ceviche. Anthony has his doing tacos and Marcus has his doing seafood.

Only the best bite will be shown to Javier. Anthony says his team is making an authentic taco, not what Americans think of as a taco. Marcus tells his team he thinks about textures in Latin food. He’s doing ceviche to provide crunch and flavor. They start with corn and fry it up. Then they start cutting up seafood. He says it has attitude and texture. There’s almonds, spices and many other components. Ludo is also doing ceviche and says it’s simple with veggies and fish.

It looks a lot like Marcus’ but was just voted the top dish in Food and Wine Magazine, so it sounds like a winner if they can imitate what he’s demonstrated. They taste the broth and Jen says it’s light and refreshing. Ludo wants them to twist it and make it their own but retain the flavor of the seafood. Anthony’s group goes outside and he lets them sample cheek and tongue tacos. They have cilantro and onions and a red sauce on top.

Anthony says it should be fresh and flavorful. He says Javier likes to poach food in a European way but using Latin ingredients. He tells them to take a bite out of team Ludo and Marcus. They have one hour and Nigella counts down to the start and then they’re all scrambling. Ludo starts with Jen and she’s making clams. He tells her to taste. Dan is making honey flan and Ludo asks about fish but he says no. Ludo insists he has to do it. Ben says he’s doing ceviche with uni flan. Ludo wants it hot, Ben doesn’t.

Ludo is all over his people and says this is too much pressure. He tells his team he’s not a loser and is micromanaging and stressing them out. On Anthony’s team, Vanessa and Tom are doing tripe. Eric is making short rib meat. Tom says he’s doing fish as a backup in case his tripe doesn’t work out. Anthony is annoyed that Tom is overdoing it and adding more and more ingredients when he’s told him repeatedly to keep things simpler.

Vanessa says she has to step it up and prove herself to Anthony. She’s got four meats in the pressure cooker so she has lots of options. Ludo tells Anthony he shouldn’t be doing tacos and Anthony fights back and says Eric is making tacos for the whole team and lived in Mexico for nine years. Anthony tells Eric the lie he told and tells him to stick with it. Eric says si. Ludo is yelling at Jen about not using proper utensils. He is his usual insane Frenchie self. Mais ouis, this guy’s a nutter.

Ludo is cracking under the strain and starts kicking things and then stomps out of the kitchen. He’s freaking out his team and making himself crazy(ier). Marcus is coaching much more calmly. Tristen is making seafood ceviche and says he’s elevating the dish. He says he loves Mexican culture and goes there at least once a year. He says his mom was a single military mom so they moved around a lot and he was exposed to a lot of cultures. He says he cooked because she worked so much.

Gabe is making branzino with corn puree. Marcus coaches him gently and Gabe admits he doesn’t cook a lot of Latin foods. Ludo is still gone and Jen says she’s not sure what’s going on. Dan takes over coaching Jen since Ludo is MIA. Anthony starts tasting to decide who’s spoon will go up against the others. Marcus is also tasting and has the other team members taste each others as well. Anthony goes to check on Tom and tastes his tripe and says it’s too chewy. They are down to about 20 minutes.

Tristen is scrambling to make Marcus proud. Ludo stalks back in and apologizes to his team. He says cooking is very frustrating and says he needs to let go and push them to be better. He starts tasting and tells Ben he can serve cold and that he was right. They are down to the final few minutes. They are building the spoons and the mentors are doing last minutes tastings to decide. Anthony is upset that Eric didn’t do tripe and hopes something good comes out of Vanessa’s pot of meat.

He tastes hers and says he’s choosing her. She’s very happy. Eric isn’t happy about it and calls it a gamble. Ludo tastes and chooses Ben. Jen says – of course – but applauds him. Marcus talks to Tristen and Gabe and then goes with Gabe. Tristen is worried that he could be sent him. Nigella calls out and then counts down the last 10 seconds then calls hands up. Jen is worried they’re going to be in the bottom and is worried that they’re taking a risk and that Ludo will have to send one of them home.

Eric can’t believe he chose Ben’s dish. Javier is ready to taste the bites. Vanessa is freaking out, as is Gabe but Ben is very confident. Nigella asks Javier to taste and choose. He starts with Vanessa’s crunchy tripe taco. He says he likes the crisp tortilla but says it’s a bit salty. Next he tastes Ben’s cold ceviche. He says it’s well balanced and well done. Finally he goes to Gabe’s branzino. He says he likes the kick of heat that it has and says it’s also well balanced.

Javier says the best was Team Marcus with Gabe’s ceviche. He’s thrilled. Ludo is totally bummed out and says he’s worried. Anthony is also stressed out. Javier says the worst bite belongs to Team Ludo. He is not happy and his team is scared. Ben says it’s the worst feeling to be worst and Ludo says he hates to have to send someone home for the first time. Ludo asks Jen why she should stay. She says she’s the toughest champ and says she’s his Taste Off queen champion.

Ben says he’s ready to fight to go to the finals. Dan says he has more to give and will not let anything stand in his way. Ludo asks Jen who should go. She says she won’t do it. Ben shakes his head no. Dan also won’t name names. Ludo is shocked that they wouldn’t turn on each other. Dan tells Jen to say his name but she won’t. Dan says Ben is their best shot to win and Ludo is just freaking out about the whole thing. He says he’s sorry for being chaotic and says maybe it was his fault.

Ludo says he loves them and will fight for them but just lost it today. He says Ben is safe and then says that he’s sending Dan home. He tells him he’s sorry. Jen is floored. Dan hugs her and wishes her luck. Ludo tells Dan he’s sorry again. He says he’s very passionate about food and that he has nothing bad to say about him. He says he’s an amazing man who saves lives as a fireman and tells him to call him and that he’ll help him with anything. Dan wishes the other two luck and says he loves them.

Dan tells Ludo it was a great decision and says he doesn’t mind. He tells Ludo he can take one for the team and Jen says he’s so classy. Ludo says he’s the nicest person he’s seen in his life and sets a great example of compassion and how to help people. Dan says it was hard getting there and even harder leaving. He says he’s proud of what he learned and proud that Chef Ludo have his time to him and says it’s okay because there’s more to life than money and fame.

Chef Javier is holding the master class for Team Marcus. He’s making elevated tacos. Gabe takes notes and says this is a great opportunity to learn how to make a flavorful spoon. He whips up some fresh salsa and then masa crepes. Javier says his kids love to make crepes. He tops them with the meat, cilantro, onions and green salsa. Gabe says he’s stoked to eat the food Javier is making. Gabe and Tristen dig in and Javier says all they need is a beer.

Jen says they are a week away from semi-finals and it’s about survival. It’s time for the solo challenge Anthony says they have to make something Latin and says Marcus gets the advice and help of Chef Javier and says one more cook is going home. Again, they have an hour to prep their blind taste spoon to get red or gold stars and then face a Taste Off. Tristen is making cochinita pibil with octopus. Javier says pit cooking gives you tender meat and hopes it will work and says it’s a good idea.

Javier likes the smoky smell he’s infusing and Javier wishes him luck. Gabe is making street food. He’s doing equites with steak and octopus topped with salsa verde. Javier says it looks beautiful. He asks Javier to taste at every step and he offers advice. Jen is nervous because she’s not so good with Latin food. She’s making a rib eye taco and is trying to make homemade tortillas but never has and says she thinks it could be a game changer.

Ben is worried since Dan is gone and says morale is down. He’s making braised pork shoulder with tomatillo sauce. They are working as a team to try and do better. She asks his advice and he thinks she’s being a bit needy. Anthony says the odds are not in his favor since half the competitors are his. Eric is making and oxtail and pork belly empanada. He says he lived in Costa Rica for awhile and really liked those. Tom is trying to make a simple dish of pescado frito. He says it’s simple and elegant.

Tarik is making chorizo and squid. He is grilling the squid over a flame and is confident he’s making a solid dish. Vanessa is making huevos rancheros topped with salsa. She’s concerned about her pork and worries it’s undercooked. She’s behind on time. Ben says she’s got poor time management and is scatter brained. She’s not sure if she can even finish and is totally freaking out. Jen says she feels okay and thinks she may actually be able to pull it off and hopes the fresh tortillas will save her.

Ben has food in the pressure cooker and also a backup in case it didn’t work out. It worked and he says his meat is perfect. They are down to three minutes. Nigella says this is time for Eric to show up and get a gold star and Anthony says that would be nice. Eric is a pro chef and has worked all over as a professional chef after culinary school. He says he really wants to win The Taste and show that he’s a phenomenal chef. He says Team Anthony is 50% of the competition and there’s strength in numbers.

Javier encourages Tristen and Gabe to hurry up and plate. Tristen wants gold stars and says Gabe has more gold stars and he wants to show that he can pull his own weight. Gabe is feeling the pressure and says he’s a little behind. Vanessa is scrambling and asks for help to finish up. Eric says everyone is working and they don’t have time when they need to focus on their own dishes Ben asks Jen to taste his but she says she can’t finish. They are down to 15 seconds and the stress is pervasive.

Tom, Eric and Vanessa are the red stars and they bring their dishes out to defend them. Tom says he tried to keep it simple but was too cautious. Anthony says the flavor wasn’t there. Ludo says the tomato was too watery. Vanessa she just ran out of time and didn’t do finishing salt. Marcus says salt would have made it a hit. Eric says he needed more filling and Nigella says the sauce shouldn’t be a smear on the plate and says he missed out on the plating.

Anthony asks Tarik who to send into the Taste Off. He says Vanessa or Tom. Tom then says to send Vanessa because of time management issues. Vanessa says she has more passion than the guys and says she has nothing to lose and is all in. Eric says he can show passion in the Taste Off and says he’s not nervous to face it. He tells Anthony to put him in there. Anthony says they’re going to talk and sends his team out.

Anthony says he’s proud of them and says no team has made it this far intact before. He tells Vanessa she exceeds his expectations but cracked under pressure today. He decides not to put her in the Taste Off. She’s excited. Anthony says on paper she’s the weaker cook but has great instincts. He decided to pit Tom against Eric. He tells Tom he has the chance to make it a good day. Tom tells Eric the winner buys the beer.

Tom and Eric must both cook Latin dishes. They have the same ingredient under their cloche – chorizo. Anthony says it’s a strong flavored sausage and Anthony goes into the kitchen to advise while Ludo, Nigella and Marcus head out. They have 40 minutes to prepare for the blind tasting. Anthony tells Tom to dial it back and show restraint. The other contestants watch as they prepare for the tasting. They are down to 17 minutes. Anthony says he’s deeply unhappy to have two cooks in the Taste Off.

Eric is making chorizo and sauteed squid. Anthony tells him to put black bean on the bottom. Tom is making chorizo potato with a fried egg. He says it’s bro food. They are plating and taking their final steps. Tom says his dish is delicious and is very confident. Eric is also feeling good. They are down to 10 seconds. Anthony says they look good and says he knows which one would be more popular – Tom’s – and says that worries him.

Eric says he wants to go down fighting. Ludo, Nigella and Marcus head in to taste and decide. Tom thinks he made a rock star dish and Eric is also confident that he’s not going home. They taste Eric’s dish first. It gets mixed reviews. Then they taste Tom’s. Marcus likes the egg and the chorizo and says it’s nice. Ludo says it’s chewy but the idea is good. Nigella says they were two good spoons. Anthony hopes that he doesn’t lose Eric and is really hoping that Tom is the one sent home.

Nigella says the cook going home is Tom. He tells Eric he’s got to buy the beer tonight. Anthony says he deliberately put in his weakest cook with his strongest cook and says Tom needs to remember restraint when he leaves and cooks. Tom says this was the way to go out.