Hey guys! I'm new to the forum and I need help quickly. I live in Northern California and my friends and I (all college students) are hosting the second in a set of cooking contests (with family members as judges) in five days. Having lost the first one, I really want to win this one, and have been looking for some pretty dramatic, shock and awe recipes that aren't actually very technical or difficult. I'm not a great cook. I considered some type of flambe, but now think I might go with some type of molecular gastronomy creation. I'm considering duck cooked as per this article (HowStuffWorks "Molecular Gastronomy Recipe Redux"
) which means browned and then microwaved. And then maybe an appetizer of smoked eel and chocolate disks as per current ideas on food pairing. Or oysters and kiwi. I'm a bit worried that all the subtleties of those dishes will pass me by today though. I tried to brown and then microwave a piece of duck today, pretty quickly, and it was very dry. So, does anyone have any advice for a dramatic, easy to medium range recipe which will surprise everyone, like a molecular gastronomy dish? I'd really appreciate it.