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Top Chef: Texas recap

Karmic justice is served.

Top Chef  dished up a heaping helping of karma this week. Our Bravo moral of the week—so conveniently manufactured with a swoosh of a magic editing wand: just wait and the bad guy will always get it in the end.

The Quickfire Challenge this week puts $10,000 on the line for the winner. Bravo must not be hurting from the recession too badly because it’s giving away money left and right on all of its formerly money-free challenges.

The challenge itself is a little goofy—the contestants have to incorporate techniques and ingredients tweeted to the judges from loyal fans of the show. The three tweets for the challenge instruct the chefs to incorporate bacon, some type of hash and an ingredient chosen by another contestant into the dishes.

In the end, Paul is the challenge winner—again—for his unique combination of oysters, blackberries and asparagus and has earned himself $30,000. Poor belittled Beverly is also in the top, redeeming herself in the eyes of judges.

The next challenge involves, randomly, Patti LaBelle, who is not even from Texas. Regardless, the show decides to break its bigger-in-Texas schlock and have the contestants cook for the famous singer. In an odd segue, Patti tells us that she learned to cook from her family. Ah, we soon understand Patti spoke of her cooking inspiration because the contestants are also supposed to cook a dish inspired by the individual or individuals who taught them to cook.

Beverly, Edward and Sarah are the top three in this challenge. Beverly cooked Korean short ribs that her mother used to make, but updated the dish and made it palatable to a modern eater. Edward, too, chose Korean food, a vegetarian bi bim bap, with mushroom stand-ins for meat. Sarah takes the challenge, though, with her play on the stuffed cabbage her grandparents used to make.

In the bottom are Grayson, Heather and Chris C. Grayson makes a Wisconsin-style—read, huge—steak with German potato salads, and the judges say that she didn’t reformat it for fine dining. Heather’s rib eye for her beef stroganoff was stringy and spongy. Chris C.’s salmon was improperly cooked and his plate had too many elements to be cohesive.

In the end, Beverly gets her wish. Her bully and nemesis, Heather, got what she had coming to her, and is sent packing. Poetic justice is served with just a little help from TV. But we'll miss Heather because who's going to be our bitch now?