Marcel’s newest assignment is to cater a thrilling love story. Karen and Greg were high school sweethearts who, after graduation, went their separate ways, married other people, and then found each other again – at their 30-year high school reunion! Marcel is inspired to tell their story with food.
The event planner, Summer, has chosen ornate gold plates to go with the storybook theme of the engagement dinner, and though Marcel attempts to assert white, square plates as the best canvas for his food, Summer will have none of it.
After a creative session with his team where they dream up a first course of two-heart salad, wine noodles, and three-tiered, re-imagined surf and turf, Marcel realizes that he needs to call in special forces to handle the dessert. Enter Sally Camacho, the ninja assassin of pastry chefs, to craft an edible engagement ring of bonbon diamond and pulled sugar, set in a passion fruit marshmallow pillow box.
For the salad, Marcel cubes watermelon and marinates it in a “gastrovac” – a device to saturate the food at lightning speed – so that it looks and tastes like tuna. This will be the “heart of fire” to match the hearts of palm and complete the two-heart salad. Summer drops by to taste this, as well as the updated surf and turf – lobster ravioli in a beet wrapper, foie gras truffle jus, truffled flat iron steak, and Alaskan king crab with a pinot noir “veil” – and it’s a hit, but she questions Marcel on how he plans to serve this. He assures her that dishes are arriving from Spain that will accommodate both Summer’s storybook theme and his own aesthetic of simplicity. She’s dubious, but her hands are tied: the event is tomorrow, so there’s no stopping the train!
The big night arrives, and so do the plates, but they’re not nearly big enough to house the surf and turf presentation Marcel had in mind. He directs Robyn to inform Summer that they’ll have to go forward with one course using Marcel’s white plates. Summer is furious, but since Karen and Greg’s big night has arrived, she makes do.
The salad, peerless, is followed by a gift just for the couple: a noodle made of their favorite wine measuring 30 inches, one inch for each year between their high school romance and this one. The three-tiered surf and turf is so successful that Karen gets misty at the memory of Greg cooking lobster and steak for her in twelfth grade. Last come the desserts, perfect and sparkling. As the guests savor their sweets, musicians begin to play a symphony, and it is clear that the magic of this moment will continue into Greg and Karen’s marriage.
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