MasterChef Australia – Sun 7:30pm; Mon-Fri 7pm, Ch10
Last night on Masterchef, Tregan failed to take advantage of a poor performance from the professional when the burnt tart Julia burnt her tart and the split sausage Jules split her chicken Maryland sausage. Tonight, it’s home invasions with an Asian twist….oh wait that doesn’t sound right.
The contestants arrive at Masterchef headquarters, finally doing away with the obligatory dawn shot. Gary reminds them that “even if you cook the best dish you could be in elimination”, while Ben mutters something obviously racist about Hindus. Preston says today its all about what you find in the average Australian home: potatoes, lamb, garlic, and teenage daughters locked up in the basement. Wait, that’s the average Austrian home.
First though a quick challenge, with the best two dishes safe from elimination. “We want Masterchef standards at home” says George. “Makes us want to kick our shoes off” he continues, as he outs himself as a born again shoe bomber. They have 90 minutes to get back to their Masterchef home and make something. Something that presumably tastes and looks good.
At the house, they unpack the seventy gas hot plates that have mysteriously found their way into the pantry. George and Gary wander in uninvited, as the first of several home invasions for the night takes place. Ben is making a traditional Balinese lamb curry but has surprisingly forgotten to include tacos, as George and Gary quiz him about time, wondering whether he can grasp the concept that time is not only linear but also spatial. Mindy is feeling Asian inspired with her soup, while Julia is making a lemon syrup cake because Audra ate three pieces of it the last time she made it, and if it’s good enough for a professional caterer, it should be good enough for two wisecracking chefs and a sartorially challenged giant.
Tregan is criticized for the timing of her scotch rock (which is oddly enough a lamb shank) with Gary and George reckoning it will take 45 minutes in the pressure cooker. Wade jumps in to inform them that he thinks it will take at least 40 minutes, guaranteed. And that’s an iron clad guarantee. George alarmingly advises then that with 30 minutes to go they want to see their hearts. Wade has his heart set on using quinoa, while Amina has put hers into making baklava. George and Gary discuss the relative merits of each contestants dish. With 5 minutes to go George tells them they’ll only taste the five best as Andrew wonders why the hell he even bothered cooking. I mean, if he was one of only five he’d still have the sixth best.
With time up, Andy is pretty confident he’ll get the call, while Tregan flips out and calls herself a roller coaster. Wade’s chicken and quinoa salad dish is picked first. Preston describes it as modern Australian, while Gary says its a nice dish. Audra’s pot stickers are next, which a dumplings designed to stick to the pot for some bizarre reason known only to Audra. Preston says some nice things about it and Gary says “nothing else to say” before performing a complete about face and saying “brilliant stuff”.
Bens lamb is chosen and the judges huddle around the bowl. Light piano music indicates that he has done well, which is then confirmed by Gary. Gary then teases Andy by reaching for his bowl, before withdrawing his hand suddenly, like a teenage girl in the back seat of a car at the drive-in.
After a break, Julia is asked about her cake, but Gary instead goes for Mindy’s prawn and snapper soup. George embarrasses himself by eating like a homeless man, but Preston takes things further by eating a prawn head, as the room descends into an orgy of nose to tail sexual deviancy.
The final dish is Julia’s cake, though for a while Gary had his eye on Debs dumplings, if you know what I mean. Preston claims its the type of cake he wants to cut parts out of and run away with, while George claims it will be in her cook book one day.
The two dishes that are deemed the best are Ben for his lamb and Audra for her dumplings, if you know what I mean. George says her dumplings were gob smackingly delicious, and if they smack George in the gob it makes them Australia’s best thing ever in my opinion. So Ben and Audra avoid elimination for another week, and get lunch and a private master class with some dude. The three who made the other dishes don’t go away empathy handed. They get to become the captains in the upcoming team challenge, and viewers wonder whether this episode could literally go forever, or just feel like it.
After a break, the remaining contestants arrive in a suburban street. “It’s about what the average Australian cooks in their home” says Matt, hoping that the average Australian isn’t a psychosexual serial killing cannibal. “You’ll be cooking in three of these homes, while the production crew rifles through the rest looking for valuables”. The captains get their aprons, and choose their teams. When Deb is chosen last, it confirms our suspicions that she may be the worst person ever.
George explains the rules. Each house is different. Number 8 is a family, 10 an older professional couple, and 14 is a woman who used to be a chef, but left the industry under a cloud after a brief affair with a short Greek chef. Mindy takes the family, Wade selects the professionals, while Julia is stuck with the sad lonely old spinster, if indeed she is a sad lonely old spinster. So Masterchef continues to surprise the contestants with the usual day to day dramas that occur in a professional kitchen, like how to handle a home invasion.
They only have two hours to cook and using only whatever they can find in the house. Hopefully they aren’t too attached to their pets. The food will be tasted by the regular cook from each household, who will also vote on the dishes.
Blue goes first. It’s a small, ugly, green kitchen as they meet the family, who are somewhat surprised to have a blue apron brigade invading their home, particularly coming so close to the invasion by the camera wielding production crew from channel 10. Mindy starts ripping their foliage apart while Amina and Jules raid the fridge, the family otherwise occupied.
Then the red team start and burst into number 10 and introduce themselves to Rosemary and Andrew, who after years of a loveless marriage seem keen to talk to just about anyone who visits them. Wade, mindful of the time, pulls rank and tells them to shut their faces. Meanwhile, yellow team get underway but are shocked to find an empty kitchen. As in empty of EVERYTHING.
After a break, the resident of number 14 tells them she’s getting her kitchen renovated and they’ve come at a very bad time but there’s a spare kitchen out the back. Deb says the kitchen looks very organic, while she argues with Tregan over the appropriate use of the smoker.
Over at blue, they struggle with the equipment, before Gary pays pops inMfor a visit. The owner of number 8 expresses concern over Jules use of the BBQ, in particular whether she has applied the appropriate heat to the chops, but there’s no time to worry as they plate up and present like seasoned professionals. “Hope you enjoy the food that we’ve actually served to you” says Mindy, leaving the tasters wondering what they had wanted to serve instead. Unfortunately for blue, the lamb is raw, proving the old adage, “a man knows his barbecue better than his wife”.
After a break, where the fireball failed to improve things, the lamb is still raw. Jules says she failed miserably doing something she’s done a thousand times. Does she mean she’s failed miserably a thousand times? Andy’s baked cheese looks and tastes fantastic, but the sight of Andy peering through a barely opened window is disconcerting in the extreme. The dessert is presented and tasted and is well received.
Red start plating up and Beau is chuffed with his Ballantine, his funny Ballantine. Julia explains there is a grozlome, and also explains her dessert before getting into an argument with George about cooking the dessert in a smoker. Alice suggests that the salmon is taking too long and wonders if a slow cooked roast lamb would be quicker. Tensions rise as George appears for a visit, as is usually the case. Julia blames the garage kitchen and her team for their dilemma, before Alice helpfully suggests smoking on the barbecue.
Meanwhile, the red team set their table and greet the guests. Wade expresses his happiness and serves the avocado and cucumber gazpacho. Then the guests enjoy the Ballantine and Kylie’s dessert, though regretting the inclusion of corn flakes, a food normally associated with breakfasts.
Over at yellow, everything isn’t coming together, as Julia’s pudding is slow to cook, if you know what I mean. They serve a gozleme with corn and capsicum relish first, which is too doughy according to one of the guests. The smoked salmon proves a hit, but they can’t have pudding because it wasn’t finished in time. Julia brings it out after it has had further time to cook. They taste though they can’t judge it, because it’s late, even though they love it.
So to the results. Blue has two of the best dishes of the day but the lamb was raw. Red had great presentation, but the dessert may or may not have been let down by the corn flake crunch. For yellow, they failed to plate up a pudding but the salmon was the dish of the day. Bu the end result is that the winning team is the red team, basically because they ‘cooked’ all their dishes and ‘served’ all their dishes.
Tomorrow night, the members if blue and yellow team meet in an elimination challenge like no other. Or at least that’s what Gary or George will call it at the start of the episode.