Iron Chef: Battle Veal


Theme Ingredient: $8000 worth of European milk-fed veal.
Iron Chef: Chen
Challenger: Kyoko Kagata, chef at Ann Moreve, a French restaurant in Gotemba.
Remarks: Aired on Food Network on November 5, 2000. Judge Korn also appeared in Battle Oxtail. In a 1993 appearance, Kagata was the first female challenger on the show.

The challenger was Kyoko Kagata, a chef at Ann Moreve, a French restaurant in Gotemba. Kagata was the first female challenger, and she defeated Chen in Battle Scallops in 1993 at age 26 (which also made her the youngest challenger to win). After that victory, she got married, quit her hotel job, got divorced, and started cooking at a restaurant owned by her aunt and uncle. In true Iron Chef personal-difficulty-is-fair-game style (f'rinstance), the divorce was brought up several times during the show. Also in a bit of an eye-opener, she challenged Chen again (I was expecting her to go after one of the others). The theme ingredient was $8000 worth of European milk-fed veal, two sirloins and two legs. I think they referred to it as koishi in Japanese, but I could be wrong. Guest commentators were Kayoko Kishimoto, who judged Chen in a battle in 1997, and singer Korn, who was judging for his fourth time, but his first with Chen.

I missed a good portion of the cooking, which was a shame because they looked to be doing some really neat stuff (Chen in particular seemed to be pushing the envelope). I did catch Fukui referring to the challenger as 'he' a couple of times, and Hattori actually admitted that he didn't know something! The other judges were photographer Tenmei Kanoh and the stern but fair Asako Kishi.

Kagata's dishes:

  1. Veal ham carpaccio, shabu-shabu style (update: from with a hat-tip to commenter Hollis, I now know that "shabu-shabu means 'swish-swish', referring to the swishing action when you cook a very thin slice of beef in hot water", and if I hadn't been such a lazy bastard I would have Googled it in the first place).
  2. Veal stew, cheese sauce. She used gorgonzola cheese in the sauce. Kishimoto said it was 'almost like chicken;' Kishi tabbed it 'outstanding, a success.'
  3. Veal cutlet with scampi prawns. To this she added a sauce made from foie gras (naturally) and truffles (of course). Sometimes I think chefs go on IC just to get their hands on foie gras and truffles, because they're used in just about every battle.
  4. Veal ribs grilled in crushed walnuts. The walnuts and sliced chestnut garnish brought out the sweetness of the veal, although Kagata said she wanted more time on that particular dish.

Chen, facing humiliation over the possibility of losing to the same chef twice, presented:

  1. Veal and foie gras hors d'oevures. Veal and foie gras were minced and wrapped in kinogasa (I think) mushrooms. Korn said the dish was perfectly presented; Kishimoto said it was 'crispy and nice.'
  2. Roast veal with white sesame seeds. I don't know what's so special about white sesame seeds, but the panel loved them. Korn: "Sweet, hot, spicy, fantastic."
  3. Avocado and veal stirfried in milk. I totally didn't get this one; apparently, the producers didn't either, since they didn't show any taster comments on it.
  4. Salt crust grill. Fukui called this one during the cooking--the veal was stuffed with pineapple and banana(!), wrapped in grape leaves, then covered in a mixture of salt and egg whites and baked. It was Chen's centerpiece. Kano loved the pineapple, Kishimoto didn't like the banana, and Kishi liked the texture and the use of fruit in general.
  5. Szechuan veal pasta. Chen used pumpkin here for sweetness, and it blew Korn away: 'This dish is beyond my comprehension.'

Chen was rewarded for his aggressiveness by winning in a sweep: Kanoh, Kishimoto, and Korn all scored it 20-19, and Kishi scored it 19-17. Kanoh, perhaps summing up the panel's feeling, afterwards commented

[Chen] tried to go beyond his boundaries today. I respect that.


According to, and verified by my pal Mr. Fujiwara, "shabu-shabu means 'swish-swish', referring to the swishing action when you cook a very thin slice of beef in hot water."

It's like blanching or hot-potting a very thin slice of meat. You've probably heard about this from ten others by now, but not in Post A Comment form. Oh, and thanks for "Iron Chef Long Pig".

Thanks. I've updated the entry.

And 'you're welcome' for IC:BLP, which reads a little dated compared to the episodes Food Network is airing now.

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This page contains a single entry by Chris published on December 27, 2005 5:33 PM.

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