Things went from sweet to sour in the "Top Chef Jr." kitchen last week for Zachary's Audrey Brust.
The quick-fire challenge, which opens the show and gives the winner immunity from elimination that week, had Audrey and the other nine remaining contestants creating a kids favorite — ice cream. But of course, the young chefs were encouraged to "think outside the cone" using a table full of traditional and not-so-traditional spices and flavorings.
"We usually stick to normal ice cream flavors where I live," commented Audrey, with a wide grin.
"I think people do underestimate me because I'm pretty short and pretty silly," Audrey said as she dove into making her frozen treat: cinnamon ice cream and raspberry parfait.
"Perfect" was how judge/host Vanessa Lachey described it.
Moving on to the elimination challenge, "The Battle of the Buds," each youth on the two teams of five had to choose from among flavor groups sweet, sour, bitter, salty and umami (savory), cook a dish highlighting that flavor and then go head-to-head with the opposing team member choosing the same flavor.
"I want to do sour because I like sour things," Audrey quickly told her team.
Reigning "Top Chef" Brooke Williamson, of Hudson House and Playa Provisions eateries on the California coast, helped out with judging, along with other "Top Chef" alumni.
All had good things to say about Audrey's halibut with fennel yuzu puree in a lemon caper butter sauce.
"I have to commend you for taking a sour challenge and not being afraid to show where the sour is," said Tiffany Derry, chef/owner of The Cupboard by Tiffany Derry in Dallas, Texas. Derry competed in seasons 7 and 8 of "Top Chef."
"One more drop of yuzu would have pushed it over the edge," judge/co-host Curtis Stone said of the potency of the Japanese lemon.
Audrey won the challenge, her first in three weeks of competition.
"It really feels great to have a win under my belt," she said. "It shows that I can cook the way I want to cook and still win."
Besides bragging rights for the week, Audrey also won a set of Anolon cookware.
"Top Chef" Jr. returns at 7 p.m. Friday on Universal Kids.
'Top Chef Jr.'
WHEN: 7 p.m. Fridays
CHANNEL: Universal Kids (cable Channel 218 in Baton Rouge and Lafayette, cable Channel 350 in New Orleans)