Lauren Starling Hope, Top Chef

Bravo/ Michael Lavine

Lauren Hope never thought she'd be sent home from Top Chef because of apples.

But that's what happened last night during the premiere of season five. She was the first contestant to go after failing to impress the judges with her apple-dicing skills and a spinach and apple salad.

Even so, Hope, who owns a cake-decorating business, holds no grudges.

Read on for what she has to say about her very brief stint on the show. It was so brief, she never even had the chance to see Top Chef's signature state-of-the-art kitchen.

Will you ever eat apples again?
I absolutely love apples. Actually, on my wedding day, I went home and baked an apple pie with my father between the ceremony and the reception because we had so much time.

Do you think it's fair to be eliminated for something like this?
I hate to say it, but absolutely. It was a test of skill and, quite frankly, everyone else outshined me.

Your husband is on a 15-month tour of Iraq with the Army. Did you get to talk to him last night?
He was able to call me after the episode aired. He's still very proud of me. We get to talk maybe once a month on the phone, so it was a real treat just to hear his voice during one of my darkest hours.

If you had the chance to try to convince the judges to let you back into the competition, what would you say to them?
I was born to do this. I am absolutely passionate about my food. I've known I was going to do this since I was 5 years old. I am destined to be Top Chef. It may not be on this show now, but in my own world and in my own right, I will be successful. If there's a will, there's a way.

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