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Natalie Portman Vegetarian Episode Of Top Chef Disappoints Plant-Eaters

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As a vegan Top Chef watcher I often feel conflicted – inspired by the artistry, but grossed out by just about everything else. So you can imagine how excited I was when I heard that Natalie Portman would be appearing on the show with a super special vegetarian challenge.

Well, the episode premiered last night and I was must say…I was totally disappointed. Portman (who is currently vegan) was vegetarian when the episode was taped and had one simple request: make a delicious herbivore meal.

While some chefs moaned and groaned, others seemed excited for the challenge and left me curiously awaiting their plant-based masterpieces.

As the chefs prepped their entrées, I noticed the kitchen was void of any familiar vegetarian proteins: no tofu, seitan or tempeh anywhere to be seen. WTF? But I hadn’t given up yet — VEG cuisine uses an array of complex ingredients and proteins.


When the meals were finally completed, I shook my head with frustration. Each dish appeared more like an uninspired vegetable medley than a fine dining entrée. Vegan cuisine is dynamic and bold, not soggy and simple.

As the episode came to a close, I couldn’t help but feel as though vegetarian cuisine had been totally cheated. It’s 2010 and that’s the kind of food you’re going to serve?!  BOO!!

What did you think about the episode? Were you happy with the meals? Chime in and share your review!

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