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    19 Things You Probably Didn't Know About Chopped

    Whose dish is on the chopping block?

    1. It takes about 12 hours to film one full episode.

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    2. Even after 200 episodes, Ted Allen still practices his lift to make sure he gets it just right.

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    3. Culinary producer Sara Hormi chooses the ingredients for each challenge.

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    She purposely creates each basket with a problem in mind, such as a protein that might not cook in time, a strong ingredient that could overpower the others, or maybe one that is unfamiliar.

    4. Ted Allen has a cubby designed specifically for his drinks. It's labeled "TED ALLEN DRINKS ONLY."

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    5. The judges use actual scorecards to assess the contestants.

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    6. Once a contestant is chopped, they are forced to walk down the notorious orange-lined hallway.

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    7. There is a specific room the contestants go in to get interviewed once they get chopped or become the Chopped champion. It is usually equipped with a box of tissues.

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    8. Competitors are allowed no more than seven knives.

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    9. Pots will already be filled with boiling water by the time the competition starts.

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    10. The least used objects in the kitchen are the sous vide machine and the immersion circulator.

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    11. Producers ask the contestants the same questions over and over again in front of the camera.

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    12. Comments by the judges after each round take about 90 minutes, while on screen we're only shown about 30 seconds worth.

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    13. The judges preview the food before they eat and judge, and make their decision based on that first impression.

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    14. The ingredients in the basket are a surprise to the judges, too.

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    15. Producers make Ted ask the contestants questions while they're cooking.

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    16. Sometimes Ted and the judges eat at the contestant's restaurants, regardless of whether they won or not.

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    17. The food is almost always cold by the time it gets presented to the judges.

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    18. Judge Geoffrey Zakarian will save Ted a bite of food if he feels it's really good.

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    19. Anne Burrell once told Ted to take a hike when he tried to talk to her while cooking.

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