NEW YORK – Senator Bernie Sanders (I- VT) was eliminated after the appetizer round on a recent episode of Chopped, sources confirm.
Sanders was chosen as one of four contestants to compete in the Food Network series for a chance to win a $10,000 cash prize. Other contestants included William Gauger, a Chef and Co-Owner from Long Island City, NY, Kimani Hines, an Executive Chef from New Rochelle, NY, and Julie Cole, an Executive Chef from Brooklyn, NY.
“You could tell right out of the gate that he was out of his element,” noted show host Ted Allen. “I started listing the mystery basket ingredients for the first round, little neck clams, ultra mizuna, vadouvan, and banana chips, and you could tell he was beginning to panic. It’s not even a particularly difficult set of ingredients.”
Contestants are given 20 minutes to complete the appetizer round and must use every ingredient in the mystery basket. “Think, Bernie, think”, Sanders was heard muttering under his breath as judges Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy, and Amanda Freitag watched on.
“You could tell the poor guy didn’t know where to start,” commented Freitag. “The first thing he did was knock the mizuna on the floor while he was trying to open the clams with a butter knife. I wanted to scream ‘just put them on some heat!’.”
Sanders eventually caught on and tossed the clams in a fry pan with some hot water, and procured some untarnished mizuna from fellow contestant Julie Cole. With the clock running down, Sanders realized that he hadn’t yet incorporated the banana chips into his dish, frantically tearing open the bag and throwing a handful of chips on each plate.
While the other contestants produced thoughtfully composed dishes, Sanders’ dish received harsh feedback from the judges. “The clams are beyond rubbery, the greens are completely undressed, and I’m just getting mouthfuls of raw vadouvan,” commented Murphy. “You failed to transform any of these ingredients and your presentation is a nightmare.”
Upon seeing Sanders’ dish under the cloche, supporters reacted with noted disappointment. “Of course they’d eliminate him first, Food Network is owned by Discovery, Inc, and big corporate media is eager to shut him down,” said Stacy Menefee, an ardent Sanders supporter, adding “I wouldn’t be surprised if the judges slipped the ingredient list to the other contestants prior to the competition.”
Despite his loss, the presidential candidate seemed to be in good spirits. “I thought it wouldn’t be too difficult. I cook all the time back in Vermont,” Sanders told BeetPress after the taping. “I guess I’ll go back to what I do best, fighting for Medicare for all, a $15 livable wage, free college tuition to public colleges and universities, and ending these senseless wars.”
When reached for comment, Jane O’Meara Sanders told BeetPress “Bernie couldn’t cook his way out of a paper bag, but you gotta love the guy for trying. Bless him.”