Arlington Heights chef makes finals of 'Chopped'
Arlington Heights chef Grace Goudie advanced to the season finale of "Chopped" after winning Tuesday night's episode of the culinary competition.
Goudie is executive chef of the popular breakfast, lunch and brunch restaurant Scratchboard Kitchen at 5 W. Campbell St. She will compete for $25,000 in the finale.
"Being a female in this world is not easy. People walk into the restaurant looking up and down asking 'where's my boss?'" said Goudie in her introduction on Tuesday's show. "I am the boss."
After finding a love for cooking while working at a restaurant in Hinsdale, Goudie attended the Culinary Institute in Napa, Calif, where she participated in its Accelerated Culinary Arts Program.
After graduation, Goudie worked at multiple restaurants in the California area, including The French Laundry, before returning to the Chicago area.
Goudie and the other chefs competed in a special "Casino Royale" tournament, where they could "reroll" provided ingredients for a random ingredient using dice.
Luck was on Goudie's side in the first round, when a favorable even-numbered roll allowed her to trade cod milt for a pair of Wagyu steaks, which she used to make a rib-eye tartar.
Even when an unlucky roll landed her a plate full of fish heads in the second round, Goudie was still able to impress the judges with a Nashville hot sea cucumber and fish head polenta.
When host Ted Allen asked Goudie why she chose to compete, Goudie said that it was at the urging of her mother, Teri, who is currently undergoing a battle with lymphoma.
"She actually really urged me to be here today," said Goudie. "I would not be standing here without her."
For her final round, Goudie made a chocolate and ketchup seasoning funnel cake, which was inspired by a recipe from one of her mom's cookbooks.
Goudie's father is ABC 7 investigative reporter Chuck Goudie.
The season finale of "Chopped" will air Feb. 1 on the Food Network.
"I'm looking forward to applying what I learned today," Goudie said.