The best thing about “Cutthroat Kitchen” is that not only are most people not going to walk away from the episode with money, but they also leave their dignity behind. Many of them arrive with the right attitude: that it’s fun and silly, and that challenges are to be enjoyed. Those who don’t take themselves seriously usually do better. Then there are the others. Some leaders come on their own, belittle other competitors, and get angry when sabotaged. That’s literally why you’re here, man! Shake Alton’s hand as you leave, for God’s sake. You know what show you’re on.
It works like this: Brown gives the chefs a dish to make. They have 60 seconds to buy what they think they need from the show’s pantry. If they don’t get out in time, Brown can take one of their items. Before cooking (and sometimes while they cook), Brown has a themed sabotage. Competitors bid on this sabotage, and the winner gains an advantage or, more often, sabotages their comrades.
For example, once the task was a skip. The chefs had to bid on a sabotage that allowed them to give one opponent a giant wok with giant chopsticks, and the other (it was round two, so there were only three chefs left), a tiny wok. with matching chopsticks. You are not allowed to touch the food with anything other than knives. This includes using your hands to hold the food while chopping it.
Another sabotage involved cooking in a human-sized dollhouse with a small kitchen. Then there was one that required you to wear a snorkel mask and peer through the water of an aquarium while chopping and prepping on the table below.