String Cheese, Jicama, Gingersnaps
Season 1, Episode 10
SCJG Chefs
Air date March 17, 2009
Winner Darius Peacock
Episode Guide
Mac & Cheese, Cola, Bacon
Jumbo Shrimp, Pepperoncini, Cereal
The judges are dismayed when some of the chefs fail to creatively transform the mystery ingredients in the appetizer course. But what can you do with string cheese? The contestants set out to aim higher in the next round. Unfortunately, they face a challenging basket: striped bass, jicama, mango, pimento peppers and brie. Then the final round brings about some caffeinated, cookie fun, when the two remaining chefs must work with instant coffee and gingersnaps.


  • Jonathan Jernigan, Executive Chef, Catering by Jonathan, Willingboro, NJ
  • King Phojanakong, Executive Chef, Kuma Inn, New York, NY
  • Darius Peacock, Executive Chef, Exceptional Taste Catering, Trenton, NJ
  • Soulayphet Schwader, Executive Chef, Talay Restaurant, New York, NY




Ingredients: Chicken Wings, Soba Noodles, Celery, String Cheese

Jonathan prepared Pan-Seared Chicken Wing with Buckwheat Pasta. The judges like his chicken. They are unhappy (Scott is more enraged) with his usage of raw celery and straight string cheese as garnishes on the plate.

King made Asian Style Buffalo Wings. King's dish is incomplete, having been unable to prepare his seasoning for the chicken or the dipping sauce he intended for the celery and the cheese. The judges give him credit for his good idea and his use of bacon in the soba.

Darius made BBQ Stuffed Chicken Wings. The judges love the ambition in his dish and the creativity of using the string cheese and celery as a stuffing for the chicken. The dish is a bit messy and the soba is a tad overcooked.

Soulayphet's appetizer is Chicken Miso Broth with Soba Noodles and Pickled Onions. The judges love his soup and the compact use of all the mystery ingredients. He receives minor criticism.

The judges are frankly offended by the dishes Jonathan and King brought forth, and are strongly inclined to chop both of them. In the end, they decide to give King another chance and chop Chef Jonathon for serving a dish that failed on all three of the judging criteria.


Ingredients: Striped Bass, Pimento Peppers, Jicama, Mangoes, Brie Cheese

Soulayphet made Pan Roasted Striped Bass with Red Pepper and Onion Purée. The judges like his purée and presentation. The skin on the fish is not crispy, and Scott points out that Phet is the only chef that doesn't have a starch on his entrée. Geoffrey considers it the best meal of the day.

Darius made Pan Seared Bass with Brie Bread Pudding. The judges find his presentation very colorful and vibrant, and they love the bread pudding. Geoffrey feels that there are a lot of separate components fighting for attention. Scott considers it the best entrée.

King made Pan Roasted Striped Bass with Spicy Tomato Stew. King's presentation is nice, but his fish and rice are overcooked, and his sauce doesn't come together. The judges can't find the brie in his jicama and mango slaw.

The judges were angry at Chef King for not using the second chance at all and the judges say he has no place in the competition anymore


Ingredients: Gingersnaps, Crème fraîche, Instant Coffee, Carrots

Darius made a Carrot Génoise with Raspberry Syrup and Ginger Coffee Cream. The judges like his génoise and cream, although the syrup makes the dish too sweet.

Soulayphet made Carrot and Ginger Snap Stuffed Crêpe with a Lime Zest. Phet's dessert is more balanced than Darius's, but his crêpe is too thick, gummy, and not cooked completely.

After looking at all three meals, the judges chop Chef Soulayphet, because of the passion and effort that Darius put into his meal. Darius is made the Chopped Champion.


  • The chefs for the episode. From left to right: Soulayphet, Darius, King, and Jonathan
  • Jonathan's Appetizer
  • King's Appetizer
  • Darius's Appetizer
  • Soulayphet's Appetizer
  • Soulayphet's Entrée
  • Darius's Entrée
  • King's Entrée
  • Darius's Dessert
  • Soulayphet's Dessert


  • This is the first episode to feature an all male group of chefs.
  • Darius later returned for the Chopped Champions episode Bring It!
Chopped Season 1
Season 2 >>
#01 Octopus, Duck, Animal Crackers#08 Coconut, Calamari, Donuts
#02 Tofu, Blueberries, Oysters#09 Mac & Cheese, Cola, Bacon
#03 Avocado, Tahini, Bran Flakes#10 String Cheese, Jicama, Gingersnaps
#04 Banana, Collard Greens, Grits#11 Jumbo Shrimp, Pepperoncini, Cereal
#05 Yucca, Watermelon, Tortillas#12 Chocolate, Mussels and Figs
#06 Canned Peaches, Rice Cakes, Beets#13 Strawberries, Turkey and Gummi Bears
#07 Quail, Arctic Char, Beer