My Kitchen Rules – Mon-Thu 7:30pm, Ch7
S&M are ready for a big one, ready to prove they deserve a place in the competition after their shambolic first instant restaurant attempt. Both Pete & Manu remind us the entree last time was great, but their bleeding lamb and disastrous dessert worked against them. Pete suggests this time they should work on their technique – have some – and take some extra time to make sure everything is perfect. Manu says something about the “ovurn” so Pete just smiles and nods.
Their menu this time around still highlights NZ flavours, but with a side of WTF. Entree – Whitebait Fritters; Main – Pan Seared Snapper; Dessert – Feijoa & Apple Crumble. Team UnZud reset their instant restaurant and get into their preparation as soon as they can. Thoms & Carla feel they can’t trust anyone; Peter & Gary noted they weren’t going to make friends after their instant restaurant… or after they offered their first opinion. S&M are on track, all prep going well, they just have to crush the glass to go in Team Tas Andy’s chowder. Unsure what a feijoa is Simon asks if he needs to de-seed them, to which Meg tells him to shut up and keep crushing the glass for the main.
“I can’t believe how well it’s going,” says Simon, as Meg turns on the ice cream maker and questions if it’s working properly. Not a thing going wrong. BONG BONG. The guests are here! Simon doesn’t want them to see any stress at all, so he and Meg quickly drop a couple of ecstasy tablets they’ve got lying around and pump up the phat beatz.Peter pops his toy Kiwi in his top pocket as a “Kiwi-kerchief”. Gary thinks Peter’s starting a trend. Peter thinks Gary needs to remember his manners and do up that top button: “One is not advertising for Grindr”. Gary reminds Peter that’s not what he said last night and the cameras awkwardly cut back to the guests at the table. S&M introduce their instant restaurant “The Kiwi Kitchen” by mimicing the sound a Kiwi makes (when mating, according to Gary). Hmm.
Team UnZud start preparing their “Kiwi klassuc” entree while the pre-dinner conversation seems a little serious for their guests. Team WA 2 Scienticians Emma & Andrew feel “everyone’s taken their gloves off and put their game faces on, and the knives are out”. It’s like between them they swallowed the “how to be a cliched reality show contestant” handbook and are regurgitating it page by page. No time to move on to chapter two though, as BONG BONG – the judges have arrived. S&M are confident they’ll do OK this time around as they’ve not only taken heed of what the judges said to them last time, but they’ve listened at every instant restaurant – thus the broken glass for the chowder.
Without a Kiwi cliche in their welcome (not even a “Kia Ora”!), S&M dive into explaining their menu to the table. Gary’s worst fears are confirmed – it’s mostly seafood. Thomas thinks it’s simplistic, and so they should do fine. Emma has no idea what a “fee-joe-er” is and wouldn’t know it if Meg was stuffing it down her heaving gullet. But we’ll discuss dessert presentation later. All the discussion starts to focus around the integrity of guests and who’s got their eyes on the prize. Simon confirms the whitebait fritters are all about the fish. Conveniently.
Andy & Megan love their whitebait; Gary reminds us he doesn’t like seafood much at all. Emma’s not a fan (“I don’t like the look of anything looking at me while I’m eating it” – I guess Andrew doesn’t get lucky too often), and Gary reminds us he doesn’t like seafood much at all. Meg’s confident once the dish is plated but Simon wants to water the salad as it looks a little wilted. Pete & Manu taste the entree as S&M stand nervously awaiting judgement. “You are the weakest link!” demands Cornelia Frances, before scarpering out the back door, cackling wildly.Immediate notes from Peter are the salad looks lifeless, but the rest of the dish is beautiful. The salad needed a dressing down – less is more. Stupid salad not pulling its weight. Back in the kitchen S&M dissect the judgement and promise “the main will be better”. Gary reminds us he doesn’t like seafood much at all, but is surprised at how much he likes the whitebait fritter entree. The eyes have it! Megan thinks it’s the best entree she’s tasted this competition, but Thomas gets all snide and bitchy saying it needed some seasoning. Fancy that.
Megan starts cooking the chowder by adding onions, bacon, herbs and glass. Simon’s starting cooking the snapper while the conversation at the table reveals cooking fish for 12 is gonna be bloody hard. Manu comes to inspect the kitchen and grills Megan on what she means by “confit”, learning she intends to poach the vegtables in water, not butter or oil. Sacre bleu! Everything’s just about ready and expectations at the table are high. Gary lectures the table as to what a chowder is and isn’t, and reminds us he doesn’t like seafood much at all.
S&M are working hard to plate up the main course just so, and ensure Andy is the only one to get glass in his chowder. When the judges taste Simon is concerned they’re like a stone wall. Pete thinks the snapper is overcooked and sat too long but he enjoyed the dish. Manu leaps across the table and embraces Simon & Meg – “Alleluia! I have sauce on my plate!”. It even pales the incorrect confit process, but the sauce’s sheer existence is enough reason alone for him to celebrate. The other guests taste it and offer various responses: Thomas doesn’t like it and is quite vocal about it; Team Qld 1’s Scott liked it – “I loved it. I like this more than the entree, and so I’ve snuck some of the main into my pockets for later.”
Remembering their last dessert was c’est horrible, S&M are paying lots of attention to the dessert in the kitchen. Apple & feijoa reducing, crumble crumbling. Nobody at the table knows what a feijoa is, except Gary.
“It’s a fruit, dear! It’s a fruit!” smiles Gary.
“So are you, but is it a tart fruit or a sweet fruit?” proffers Peter.
“It’s possible to be both, you know,” returns Gary.
HOW CAN YOU NOT LOVE THE INTELLIGENT, BITCHY GAY MEN?!?!?!
Meg starts doubting herself, but she need not have as in a classic piece of “the producer told Pete how to do it” misdirection he loves the dessert. He really appreciated the effort in the crumble, but they shouldn’t have bothered with the ice cream: “It’s too icy”. “Using feijoa was the best thing you’ve done,” says Peter on Manu’s behalf. S&M are super happy, and Pete predicts they’ll go far given their improvement this time from last. Thomas & Carla are strategically talking down the dessert, as they have the entire meal all night. Gary says he liked the feijoa but reminds everyone he doesn’t like seafood much at all.
The table turns and it’s time for the teams to score. Team WA 2 – 7; Team Qld 2 – 6; Team Qld 1 – 8; Team Tas – 7; Team Vic – 5. Total score 33/50. Simon & Meg are overwhelmed with their improved team scores. Pete and Manu scored:
P Entree – 8; M Entree – 7
P Main – 7; M Main – 7
P Dessert – 7; M Dessert – 7 (“If you had’ve perfected that ice cream I would have happily given you a 10 for that.”)
Overall score: 77/110
Team UnZud are agog, 19 points ahead of their first instant restaurant score, and well ahead of Thomas & Carla. Pete wants to see the teams keep growing and that’s what he saw from S&M tonight. With the ring successfully dropped into the fiery pits of Mount Doom it’s off to Taswegia for Megan & Andy’s return instant restaurant.