MasterChef Australia – Sun 7:30pm; Mon-Fri 7pm, Ch10
Last night on MasterChef Australia a travesty took place in allowing Alice to get anywhere near an immunity challenge. If you’re an Alice fan – you may want to stop reading now.
After lots of establishing shots confirming we’re in Italy, Alice & Mindy share their game plans. Alice is cautious but confident, while Mindy intends to crush the infidel. The girls take a long walk from Florence to some mountain in Tuscany overlooking Florence and amazingly Mindy hasn’t taken the chance to stab Alice and dispose her body on the way up.
George pontificates over the source of gold while introducing the Immunity pin, and Matt P speaks of rebirth like he’s the Messiah’s PR consultant. But first, he of the Cravat takes the girls for a tour guide of Florence which includes eating a lot of food. For some reason, Alice is allowed to recap everything and it’s painful to my ears.
Alice’s pretentiousness is only outdone by that of their tour guide. Then – shock horror – we learn Mindy doesn’t like offal while Alice throws it back like chocolate. This continues to help form a picture about her and it is none too flattering.
The girls appear in their chef’s whites in a Villa ready for their first challenge – a taste test, delivered by the Italian Santa Claus. A man who for 50 years has been synonymous with synonyms. The man who knows how to cook a horse’s head better than anyone and Godfather of Italian cooking – Antonio Carluccio. He’s so cuddly and smiley and distracting.
The taste test dish is presented and Mindy is quietly begging that it not be offal. Admittedly the dishes aren’t always awesome but never usually that bad. Alice and Mindy go spoon for spoon, and while the judges get to pull all sorts of faces while revealing the ingredients as the contestants guess them correctly and it also allows Alice to pull enough thinking faces of her own to only heighten the experience. For herself.
ALICE IS SO FRUSTRATING. Her forced hug of Mindy when she wins the first challenge is appalling, and Mindy gives her no regard. Even the choice of the final dishes she and Mindy are to cook she chooses the dishes that play to her opponent’s strengths. Why are we cursed with this fake myope?
It’s so important to hear what the other Cheftestants think of Mindy & Alice’s chances that they really should ask them some time instead of letting them just stand idly by, not saying anything.
The dishes chosen are artichoke soup, roast rabbit & completely stuffed squid. There’s pressure points all over the place, but sadly not one person has hit the one that will aurally disable Alice. IF only they’d done it before Alice had the chance to remind us of her Jewish history. Again. Matzoh balls be dammed!
Cooking in the Tuscan sun hasn’t quite taken it’s toll like we’d all have hoped. Interestingly Mindy has strayed from the menu and skinned the calamari where as Alice hasn’t. Could this be the difference?! It was, until Gary checked Alice’s oven and finds it isn’t cooking anywhere near like it should be… it’s hot then it’s cold, it’s yes then it’s no and so forth.
Despite Alice predicting her own demise, Mindy is nice enough to share her oven with Alice so that there’s still a competition. Beau predicts it’s all over but what would he know. Alice takes off her glasses when she removes her rabbit dish from the oven AND PROVES their simply props as Gary attempts to poke her in the eyes but she blocks him with a classic Three Stooges “hand over the nose” move.
Time runs out, Alice is dejected and thinks Mindy has nailed it. It’s a blind tasting by Matt P, George & Antonio, and when they’re presented with the artichoke soup they prefer Mindy’s dish over Alice’s – but the reveal at the end can always be confusing.
The calamari is presented and Antonio gives George his first warning on his table manners. Mindy’s dish “lacks brightness and freshness”, while Alice’s dish “is preferred with the skin, and there’s a real lightness”. Augh! Who would have thunk it – it all comes down to the final dish. That wascally wabbit. Antonio immediately notices one dish (Alice’s) forgot the artichokes. Grazie.
Matt P points out plate A (Mindy’s) has no onions, but Antonio says the rabbit is too dry and the potato overcooked. Plate B (Alice’s) has beautifully cooked rabbit and “the right amount of rosemary” according to George. This is crazy – could it be true? Could Alice have pulled it out of the bag.
You can see the lack of confidence in Mindy’s face as the judges reveal their choices: Mindy’s artichokes, Alice’s calamari, and Alice’s rabbit. Oh God no – now she’ll be insufferable. She’ll probably wear gold glasses in honour of the moment now. Like the great author first wrote: “I’m getting too old for this shit.”
IF only Mindy had face punched Alice upon hearing the final judgement instead of hugging her and telling her not to cry. Now THAT would have been a MasterChef moment. Sadly it’s not to be – but at least with the team challenge tomorrow there’s the chance for Alice to have to forfeit the pin immediately. How delicious would that be?!