“Selena + Jon & Vinny” rustle up a chicken, figure out how the oven works, and donate ten grand to the NAACP.
This recap of Selena + Chef season 1, episode 5, “Selena + Jon & Vinny”, contains spoilers. You can check out our thoughts on the previous episode by clicking these words.
Today, Selena has two dudes in her kitchen — Jon & Vinny, restauranteurs and authors and BFFs, and they’ll be taking Selena through a roasted chicken with a cilantro sauce and roasted boniato yams. They immediately know Selena’s appliances better than she does, which admittedly isn’t saying much. At least Selena + Chef episode 5 is good enough to show us a bunch of flashbacks of Selena claiming her oven doesn’t have a convection setting.
Following on from an earlier episode, “Selena + Jon & Vinny” has Selena plunge her hand right into a raw chicken carcass to yank the heart out Mortal Kombat style — this feels like a spiritual successor to Selena caressing an octopus, sure to please the creeps. And Raquel, for some reason.
Selena and Raquel struggle mightily to just get the chicken in the oven, but after a while, it’s in there and it’s time to make the sauce. Selena’s already charmingly huffing and puffing, trying to identify parsley. Raquel squirts lime juice in her eyes, for added comedy value, and Selena uses a dry measuring cup for vinegar, which is pretty on-brand. It all goes in the blender with oil and garlic and jalapeño and salt, sugar, and cumin. According to Raquel, it’s really fresh. I’ll take her word for it.
Time to make tomato bruschetta. Mise-en-place is brought up again and Selena still can’t recall it. Has Selena picked up basil or mint? Drama! Jon & Vinny ask Selena if she remembers meeting them ten years ago when they were catering one of her photoshoots. She can’t, obviously, but she doesn’t seem to remember anything, so it’s hardly insulting.
Useful tip: you should let meat rest for about half of the time you cooked it for. While that’s happening and the bread is being eaten, Jon & Vinny ask Selena if she cares about reviews, which is awkward for me, reviewing the show. She doesn’t, but she does care about her charity work and not being reduced to just a tabloid story, which is fair enough.
Pulling the chicken apart is hilarious: “It’s like your body, you have two breasts.” “Use the whole knife, it’s not a murder”. On the yams: “I’m gonna squeeze ’em like I’m squeezing cheeks.” It’s a “that’s what she said” highlight reel.
After the obligatory charity plug for the NAACP — a pretty relevant cause at the moment, and indeed all the time — we bow out after another successful cooking experience in Selena + Chef season 1, episode 5.