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'Just Desserts': Black and white and read all over

October 21, 2010 |  1:29 pm

Judges with L_sm Wednesday night's episode got a little close to home, as the "Just Desserts" cast descended on the L.A. Times building to cater our 128th birthday party.

The chefs were all baffled by the challenge, which required them create pastries devoid of color, utilizing only black and white. The task was like taking away the primary colors from a pack of painters, and no one seemed pleased. Given they don't make black disco dust, Zach was in quite a jam.

Michael Liaskonis of Le Bernardin came over from the Big Apple to judge the episode, which had me wondering, "Where's the local flavor?" And more importantly, "Why wasn't I invited?" If this were high school I'd have been face-deep in a pillow.

While I maintained my cool, Heather certainly did not. When her white chocolate Rice Krispie treats went missing a la pea puree, she immediately assumed it was her nemesis Morgan who absconded with them, barking to the rest of Team Diva (Zach, Heather and Yegit) about her disgust of her competitor. It's hard to believe someone so bitter has dedicated their life to sweets.

Erik, who was moping around the supermarket while shopping for ingredients, felt defeated too early. Gail and the gang thought that his Mississippi mud cake with earl grey whipped cream and hot fudge sauce was beautifully plated, and Johnny Iuzzini stated it was his best dessert yet.

Morgan The monochromatic match really pushed the contestants. They extracted the essential flavors from items like tea and fruits and utilized various textures to create visual appeal. Morgan's sticky toffee pudding and chocolate date cake with banana anise cream and coffee Kahlua jelly, pictured at right, was a perfect example. His columnar design was inspired by the design of our paper, and visually it worked.

But it was Yigit's chocolate cake with white chocolate mousse, berry compote and almond milk ice cream that made headlines. He took home his first quick-fire win, beating out the rest of the boys that were in the top rung.

The three remaining ladies' desserts were deemed the worst by the judges, and even though Danielle's ill-planned 128 petit four plate lacked insight and flavor, Erika and her gluey ice cream got sent home.

Thank goodness it wasn't our local girl. We love L.A.!

--Krista Simmons

Follow me on Twitter @kristasimmons

Photo: From right, Gail Simmons, Michael Liaskonis and Dannielle Kyrillos. Courtesy of NBC UMV.