Update October 10, 2013: Just a note to let you all know that the recipe links in this post are all obsolete! It seems Channel Ten has decided to move the recipes to TenPlay a couple of weeks ago, so all the links below are no longer working. When you click a recipe link, you will go the recipe page at TenPlay, and you need to search there for the recipe you want. No surprise as Channel Ten likes to play hide-and-seek with their recipe archive, they do this every year, and during the shift, they usually lost quite a lot of recipes in the process, so some recipes have disappeared. Good luck finding some of the recipes. It is no wonder Channel Ten has tumbled down the gurgler in the ratings if that’s how they treat their online archives, constantly changing them and expecting viewers to go the round-about way just to find a recipe. I went there today and the new format is a pain to use especially if you don’t know the exact name of the recipe, and browsing through them is so slow and frustrating…
Update August 25, 2012: For all of you UK fans asking about MCA4, Series 4 will premiere on WATCH HD (Sky 109/155, Virgin 124, HD: 125) beginning Sunday, September 9, 2012 at 7pm. Lucky you, getting to see the series in HD! If you are a MCA tragic, you may also want to follow the forum discussing MCA4 on UK Digital Spy.
Spoilers Alert: don’t click into this post if you have recorded the show but not watched it yet!
No definite airdate for the 2012 season of MasterChef Australia yet, but it will probably premiere the last week of April or first week of May. However the first promo is out and it does remind me of the promo for the first season with that operatic sequences, so enjoy…
MasterChef magazines 2012 issues – February, March & April (left to right).
Update April 20, 2012: Here are some of the second MCA4 promos featuring a sneak peek of a few contestants, not on YouTube so can only provide a link here. For a channel that is supposed to gear towards the younger audiences, Channel Ten is hopeless when it comes to the promotion for their shows! Look at Channel 9 promotions for The Voice Australia the past few weeks, it has created so much hype surrounding the blind girl that the first three episodes left all other channels and programmes in their wake with the monster ratings the show generated!
I would have thought that for a channel that is struggling with the number of viewers that Ten would be casting a wider net especially online to promote their shows, well no it seems. There has not been any buzz on their MasterChef Facebook about the upcoming season. The only video they have on YouTube is the first promo, and that was put up by the producers, it seemed and not Channel Ten. I have been recording Everyday Gourmet since the second series started a couple of weeks ago, and again minimal promotion for MCA4 to be found, weird. I have also switched over to Channel Ten quite a few times at about 7pm, hoping to see more new promos for MCA4 between the end of The Project (another show I stopped watching after the numerous timeslot changes) and the beginning of The Biggest Loser, as the show is slotted to go on at 7pm this year, again nothing. All I saw everytime I switched over was the First Look promo for Offspring, a show I am not watching… Now if you are a fan of The Biggest Loser (as it is reality TV related), which I am not, that means all the same audience saw was the same promo for Offspring every night, and not be exposed to other upcoming shows on the channel, absurd!
Now back to the second promo, again as dull as last year… Uncooked fish, dropping chicken on the floor, getting lost, in the vein of the calamity of Alex from last year… What happened to the promise of getting back to celebrating food and showing skill of the contestants? Instead we get more of the clumsiness in the kitchen… Not looking good for MCA4!
Update April 23, 2012: It is official, series 4 of MasterChef Australia begins 7:30pm on Sunday, May 6, 2012! This year the show will start in Melbourne, and also go to Tasmania and Kangaroo Island later in the series. Today in The Age newspaper, Gary Mehigan also discussed what went wrong with the show last year.
Here’s a news segment with Matt Preston just before the media launch of series 4 on April 23, 2012:
MasterChef Australia 2012 Season Launch:
Update April 30, 2012: MasterChef Australia Series 4 Where the food comes first – an interview with Matt Preston and executive producer Margie Bashfield
Isn’t it interesting that they keep promising that food will come first, but then the promos keep showing disasters in the kitchen! Why can’t they show good cooking, fantastic dishes that will inspire the viewers? That’s what kept us watching, good cooking from contestants like Chris, Justine, Poh and Andre from Season 1 and Marion, Alvin, Aaron and Jonathon from Season 2… Of course there were others who came through towards the end of those seasons, but these contestants were the ones who captivated the viewers earlier on in those two seasons with their cooking.
Update May 2, 2012: Here’s the 3-minute First Look of MasterChef Australia 4:
Update May 3, 2012: With the anticipation of the new season in full swing, here are two more articles from the newspaper:
Gary Mehigan and George Calombaris on reviving MasterChef Australia in the ratings on eve of fourth series
MasterChef is still the best reality show on television
On a slightly different note, on May 9, 2012, after the first Wednesday episode of Season 4, Channel 10 will screen a 20-minute show, MasterChef: Where Are They Now? at about 8:10pm. It will be interesting to see how many former contestants they will feature…
Update June 10, 2012: Channel 10 has confirmed that MasterChef Australia All-Stars will be filmed soon and broadcast during the Olympics!
Update July 3, 2012: When did this promo air, I certainly haven’t seen it! LOL!
Week 1 (6/5/2012 to 11/5/2012)
Ep 1, Sunday, May 6, 2012 – Auditions for the Top 50 places in Melbourne
Overnight TV Ratings
Ratings: Lukewarm servings for Ten’s Masterchef
So the fourth season is here. I was surprised but did enjoy the first episode, well, my expectation was not very high this year. But the real test would be next week when the top 24 are selected and we will see if all the dishes, or at the very least 80% of the dishes, that the contestants cooked are being shown. If the producers are serious about the focus being on food this year, they have to show all the dishes instead of just the selective top 3 and bottom 3 dishes as were the past two years!
It was also frustrating to see that irritating virus from My Kitchen Rules of showing extra bits of the show in between the ad breaks has infected MasterChef Australia too. Oh, well…
Oh, a note to Channel 10, your promos for that upcoming show from the girl whose only claim to fame was to say bloody in an ad a few years ago were enough for me to switch channel as fast as I could. Another Yasmin in the making and that promo being shown during MasterChef was as bad as the splitting of last year’s MasterChef final with that flop of a renovating show. Why would you even do a promo for a voyeuristic show during a family cooking show with kids watching is beyond me? I could not have reached for my remote fast enough to avoid it, and if I have to endure that promo through this year’s show and if MasterChef Australia this year is not living up to the expectation, the switching of channel will not be a good omen for Channel 10!
And here we start again with another season of the fantastic episode recap from The Age newspaper, yeah yeah yeah…
Contestant Recipe – Ricotta and Parsley Ravioli with Tomato Sauce (Tregan Borg)
Contestant Recipe – Singapore Black Pepper Crab with Bok Choy and Vermicelli Noodles (Kath von Witt)
Ep 2, Monday, May 7, 2012 – Auditions & Top 50 Chicken or Beef Mystery Box
Episode 2 Recap
Overnight TV Ratings Ouch! The ratings for MasterChef Australia has slipped below the one million mark for the first time ever IIRC… Not good news!
It was good that they wrapped up the auditions in the first 10 minutes of tonight’s episode and got on with the competition of cooking.
Finally we also got to know the names of some of the contestants. A couple of them have already made a good impression on me – the Egyptian/South Korean, Amina and the Canadian, Kevin. They both looked like fun contestants to watch and seemed to be natural cooks. Kevin was still amusing with that jiggling of his roast chicken with its bottom stuck in a tin can, even though I have seen it several times in the promo. Glad that he is the first contestant to make the Top 24!
On the other hand, Yukio is going to get on my nerve if he is going to cry every time he steps in front of the judges. After the mad crying last night, he looked like he was about to bawl his eyes out twice tonight, heaven helps us all if he made it into the Top 24!
Contestant Recipe (Top 24) – Cider Can Chicken, Papa Sita’s Corn Cob, Potato Salad and Garlic Aioli (Kevin Perry)
Audra’s Chocolate Ganache Tart
Contestant Recipe (Top 24) – Dark Chocolate Raspberry Tart with Cherry Port Jelly (Audra Morrice)
Ep 4, Wednesday, May 9, 2012 – Russian Roulette Salmon & Making Butter
Episode 4 Recap
Overnight TV Ratings
Hmm, not very impressed with tonight’s challenge of Russian roulette styled apron-awardings and eliminations! It could potentially have resulted in 10 mediocre dishes and yet with 5 of them getting aprons without making a good dish, or going the other way of 10 good dishes and 5 of them still eliminated. I thought no more stunts like this this season, well yet again, very, vey disappointed!
Here’s a more comprehensive Where Are They Now article than the one shown after episode 4 on Channel 10 tonight.
No recipes from this episode? So not one recipe from the five contestants who got the aprons are good enough to be published?
Oh dear! I normally loved to watch dessert episodes in MasterChef Australia. Tonight I was bored whilst watching this episode, maybe there were just too many contestants to follow with their progress of recreating the recipe and not familiar with quite a few of them who just have had their first screen time… Also maybe the recipe was too complicated at this stage of still culling contestants for the Top 24 with contestants fumbling about… There just was not that wow moment…
It also seemed very cruel to ask 33 contestants to slave over two hours on a technically difficult dessert and only 12 of them got tasted, not to mention all those wasted ingredients from the other 21 plates not tasted. Wouldn’t it be much better to first cull the contestants with some tests on basic dessert techniques first, and select the 12 best out of them to cook this pressure test for the 6 aprons? Then we can also concentrate better with only 12 contestants. But, hey, what do I know? It also seems to me that there are less challenges to select the top 24 this year, while the episodes are getting longer and longer to fit in more advertisements and more and more inane recapping of things we have just seen a few minutes ago before the ad breaks…
Pressure Test – Peach Melba (Shannon Bennett)
Ep 6, Friday, May 11, 2012 – MasterClass #1 at The Lake House, Daylesford
Overnight TV Ratings
Gary Mehigan’s Fig Tart
MasterClass – Warm Duck Salad with Foraged Herbs and Shoots (Alla Wolf-Tasker)
MasterClass – Roasted Fillet of Beef with a Pommes Dauphine and a Warm Vinaigrette (George Calombaris)
MasterClass – Fig Tart with Pistachio Crumble and Double Cream (Gary Mehigan)
Back Row: Matt, Audra, Lydia, Debra, Kath, Kevin, Jules, Sam, Wade, Amina, Julia, Andrew
Middle Row: Andy, Dalvinder, Filippo, Tregan, TK (Tran Kim), Beau, Kylie, Mario
Front Row: Emma, Alice, Ben, Mindy
Did anyone have the feeling this year’s Top 24 selection felt rather random? It was as if the judges already had their Top 24 decided, with a few maybes, and they were just going through the motion last week to decide those few maybes. Well, that is my impression anyway…
On another note, Yukio is gone (at least he had controlled himself from bursting into tears too readily) but we now have Emma who is also getting on my nerve of crying so much… Yukio might have confused his fusion dish with too much of a Japanese flavour though, as it was a French challenge. On the other hand, Emma may not have made the modern Parisian macarons with the frilly feet and shiny tops, her macarons were still macarons (even if her intention was to make the Parisian macarons), just the traditional ones that have sort of disappeared since the modern Parisian macarons developed by Pierre Hermé became what everyone thought French macarons should look like (if you have old cookbooks with pictures, look them up)… I think that’s why Emma got in instead of Yukio.
Contestant Recipe – Roast Belly of Pork with Seared Scallops and Apple Brandy Sauce (Mindy Woods)
Bonus Recipe – Debra’s Walnut and Roquefort Tart
OK, the invisible contestants have struck again! I counted 10 dishes being shown despite 24 contestants cooking! That’s less than half! Obviously broken promises again this year! Why did I even believe they are listening to viewers’ complaints this year…
I remembered hearing last week that when asked why they wanted to be on the show, some contestants answered they wanted to ‘learn’ to cook (I would have rather they said they wanted to ‘improve’ their cooking!), so now the first challenge is over and it looked like most of them struggled (seeing that two of the top 3 tonight actually failed to make their recipes properly!) and one contestant was blasted for cooking something too simple. Now, if you are going to choose contestants who wanted to ‘learn’ to cook, then what do the judges expect? Of course you are going to get simple cooking! And I sort of remembered last year in one of the forums, someone was saying the producers rejected some really good cooks because they only wanted mediocre contestants who can ‘grow’ through the series! It looked like they are still following this flawed formula this year! Why? Why don’t just choose the best cooks so we can be inspired right from the start? Aren’t the producers familiar with that saying, “You Are Never Too Old to Learn”! Even good cooks have something to learn and grow through the series! Once again really disappointed so far this season.
Well, at least they are publishing most of the recipes from this episode, but it is weird to find the recipes that we did not even see in the episode! Still two missing though, so what did Amina and Andrew cook? Big mysteries! Another question is, since two of the top 3 messed up their recipes (re – Debra’s and Emma’s), so the recipes given are the messed up ones, or the original ones they planned to make?
Contestant Recipe (winner) – Beef taco and tuna tostada (Ben Milbourne)
Contestant Recipe – Crispy Skin Fish with Fragrant Yellow Curry (Mindy Woods)
Contestant Recipe – Scallops, Hummus, Walnut, Green Olive and Pomegranate Salad (Lydia Guerrini)
Contestant Recipe – Moroccan Lamb Shanks (Wade Drummond)
Contestant Recipe – Pasta Alla Tregan (Tregan Borg)
Contestant Recipe – Roast Duck with Wild Berry Gin Sorbet (Sam Davis)
Contestant Recipe – Gourmet Burger with Onion Rings (Matthew Howell)
Contestant Recipe – Beef Goulash with Egg Noodles (Mario Mohorko)
Contestant Recipe – Chocolate Tart with Meringues (Kylie Millar)
Contestant Recipe – 3 Hat Canadian Poutine (Kevin Perry)
Contestant Recipe – Trippa Alla Firenze (Kath von Witt)
Contestant Recipe – Twice cooked tongue with spiced sweet potato puree and spicy capsicum salsa (Alice Zaslavsky)
Contestant Recipe – Scallops with Chorizo, celeriac and fennel puree and red wine reduction (Jules Pike)
Contestant Recipe – Seared scallops with honey and garlic chorizo and salsa verde (Andy Allen)
Contestant Recipe – Szechuan prawns and duck (Audra Morrice)
Contestant Recipe – Porterhouse with kipfler potatoes and red wine jus (Beau Cook)
Contestant Recipe – Jazadalv’s Chicken Curry (Dalvinder Dhami)
Contestant Recipe – Little lime and ricotta puddings with lime syrup (Debra Sederlan)
Contestant Recipe – Chinese 5 spice flourless chocolate cake with chai creme anglaise (Emma O’Shaughnessy)
Contestant Recipe – Pasta con Salsa with Salsiccia Italiano (Filippo Silvestro)
Contestant Recipe – Vanilla and Chocolate Cupcakes (Julia Taylor)
Contestant Recipe – Crispy Skin Duck with Shitake and Corn puree (TK Nguyen)
OK, the final two recipes were put up a couple of days late but here they are from Amina and Andrew:
Contestant Recipe – Stuffed Middle Eastern snapper, onion rice and tomato salsa with Kingfish in Harissa sauce (Amina Elshafei)
Contestant Recipe – Tuna rissoles nothing like mum’s (Andrew Strickland)
Immunity Challenge – Prawn Ravioli with Prawns and Lemon Butter Sauce (Ben Milbourne)
Contestant Recipe – Roast pork belly with apple puree and cider vinegar vinaigrette (Audra Morrice)
It seems nothing is going right for MasterChef Australia this year. The ratings has dropped below the 1 million mark again the past two days, and now news that contestants and crew have been hit by gastroenteritis on their oversea tour this week. Don’t click on this link if you don’t want to know the oversea destination this year.
The show has become the best comedy on TV at the moment coupled with the hilarious recap from The Age every morning. I’m only watching half-heartedly now just so I can follow the recaps the next morning.
Don’t tell me this is not the funniest comedy (of error) on TV at the moment? Oh, Kevin, what were you thinking! With a bench full of so many other instantly recognisable pasta, you had to pick THAT ONE! And isn’t it ironic that with that decision, a gay man in one fell swoop, single-handedly saved all the other male contestants and put all, bar one, of the female contestants into the next elimination round? It was such a hoot. And that was the fourth year in a row that one of my early favourites had been chopped in the first elimination with unfair challenges or decisions by the judges!
Admittedly this one is Kevin’s own fault more than anything else. On the other hand, it has to be said that the other 11 contestants did scurry like scared little mice and
hide line up behind Kevin who did not move! So they themselves were partly to be blamed, especially the five behind Kevin who got dragged into the second round, the other six just got incredibly lucky! If only there was at least one or two who were brave or confident enough to stand in front of Kevin and not played follow the leader! There would have been more choices of easier pasta to choose from… But then again, who knows, another contestant might have done exactly what Kevin did…
It perfectly illustrated what a crock these types of stupid challenges are! A silly decision by one contestant affected all the other contestants and left them with no other choices. And the producers are still trying to sell to us that the show is all about the food. There was absolutely no sense of fair play at all!
Not to mention that the challenge also left all the home viewers who were trying to identify all those pasta dangling in the air with no outcomes! Why not put them all under cloches and lifting them one by one for all the contestants to identify as each one was lifted (that would have been too much of a common sense approach for the producers I expect), then at home we the viewers could also play along identifying them, that would make me glue to the television and have kept me interested, just saying…
It is just such a great shame, because I think MasterChef Australia has the best format in terms of reality programmes. It has interesting and variety of challenges (if devised fairly) and it gives time for viewers to get to know the contestants. The biggest problem is that the producers have basically destroyed it by choosing contestants that don’t appear to be standout/confident cooks. In season one and two, very early on we knew season 1’s Chris and season 2’s Jonathan and Marion were knowledgeable with plenty of culinary ability and most importantly confident cooks, but season 3, not a single one and most would be reduced to tears as soon as something did not go right, and so far season 4 felt the same, no standouts in this bunch. Or if there are any, they make them invisible! I was thinking that Kevin could be the confident cook this season, but alas, no, he was shunt to the background after being the first to get into the Top 24, then he was completely invisible in the Mystery Box challenge and the next time we saw him cook was in the elimination. Instead the show focuses on the drama of crying, inability of the contestants who can stand the pressure, etc., which really bring it down to the level of other run-of-the-mill reality programmes.
Ep 12, Friday, May 18, 2012 – MasterClass #2
Overnight TV Ratings
MasterClass – Roasted Yabby Tails with Crustacean Béarnaise and Pickled Cucumber (Gary Mehigan)
MasterClass – Lemon and Ricotta Cheesecake with Fruit Salad (George Calombaris)
MasterClass – Walnut and Fig Loaf with Wheatmeal Flour (Phillippa Grogan)
There a lot of searches for this recipe the last couple of days, and it seems this recipe has been deleted on the MCA website, so here it is:
400g white unbleached flour (13% protein)
100g wheatmeal flour (wholemeal)
10g salt flakes
5g dried yeast
335ml lukewarm water
75g walnut halves
75g figs, roughly chopped if required
1. Preheat oven to 250°C one hour before baking with a baking stone. Combine flours and salt in a large bowl, mix lightly, add yeast. Add water and mix with one hand until incorporated and it forms a dough, cleaning the bowl with the dough. Place dough on bench.
2. To knead the dough, stretch dough on the bench into a long rectangle, pushing away with one hand and stretching down with another. Roll the rectangle up, turn 90°C and turn to have seam up, repeat 3-6 times until the dough looks smooth and the skin starts to tear.
3. To add ingredients, press dough out into a rectangle, add walnuts and figs and roll and tuck each turn in as you roll the dough into a log. Press out and roll up 3-4 times until ingredients are bursting out. Always turn so seam is up and portrait orientation before pressing out.
4. Bulk prove: leave covered for 1 hour, under a pyrex bowl or similar.
5. To knock back: Roll dough away from you using the heel of your hand 5-6 times to release air from the dough and develop the gluten structure. Do this 3 times at 20 minute intervals.
6. To shape dough, flick and tuck 3 times using the kneading method. This will give the dough a uniform structure inside and remove any large air holes that may be developing.
7. For the final prove: dust a clean chopping board heavily with semolina and place shaped dough on semolina. Cover with a clean large plastic bag and tuck edges under to make a sealed enclosure. Place in a warm, draft-free place for one hour to 1.5 hours to prove. Dough should double in size.
8. Sprinkle baking stone in oven with semolina. Uncover dough and using the tip of a serrated knife or a razor blade make 4 slashes across the loaf about ½ cm deep.
9. Carefully transfer dough to baking stone, close oven door quickly. Throw a few pieces of ice into the bottom of the oven and quickly close the oven door to create steam and develop a chewy crust. Turn oven down to 200°C and bake for 25 minutes. Set oven door ajar with a wooden spoon handle for another five minutes to allow bread to dry out.
Mystery Box – Lemon Ciambella Cake with Lemon Infused Crème Anglaise and Coconut Lemon Caramel (Filippo Silvestro)
Mystery Box – Spanner Crab and Coconut Salad with Egg Nets (Mindy Woods)
Invention Test – Murtabak (Mindy Woods)
Does anyone have the same feeling as I have that the producers have completely forgotten that MasterChef Australia is actually a competition? IIRC Matt Preston or one of the producers mentioned that they wanted to have a warm and fuzzy immunity challenge this year, that is with mates helping each other out during the challenge, and which I took with a grain of salt at the time. And after having watched two immunity challenges, it is very clear once again they did not think the concept through at all! As many viewers have pointed out, if a contestant indeed won an immunity where the two helpers have cooked the winning dishes and the challenger was the one who failed, how is that fair? And also at the later stages when immunity is important to advance to the final weeks, what is to stop the helpers from sabotaging the challenger? Actually the sabotaging would make for great television, I would definitely watch that!
I really don’t like this 3 vs 3 immunity challenges. However, if they really wanted to have 3 contestants vs 3 chefs scenario, it should be the top 3 from the Invention Test rather than the winner choosing two helpers. In this case all three should be in it to win immunity, and to give the winner of the Invention Test a slight advantage, he/she will have the first choice of choosing the course he/she wants to cook, then the first runner-up will choose one of the two remaining courses, and the second runner-up getting the remaining course.
As for Matt Moran doing the mentoring, he was not doing much, was he? I saw Gary and George helping the contestants more during individual challenges (which I hated as no one should be getting any help from the judges during individual challenges) than what Matt was doing in the immunity challenges. He should also be helping them with the plating up, as that was their weakest point as far as the contestants were concern. One look at the platings from the last two immunity challenges, and any fool could pick out which dishes were from the chefs and which the contestants. Maybe they should be given some time, say 15 minutes, for Matt to help them with the plating up. The show is rapidly losing me this year, I zoned out last night watching this episode and as I was reading the recap this morning, I was thinking, oh, did not remember this bit, and oh again did not remember that bit…
Immunity Challenge – Herbed Goat’s Cheese and Beetroot Salad (Amina Elshafei)
Don’t click on this link if you don’t want any spoiler about the oversea trip this year: MasterChef left hours before a natural disaster struck
Ep 16, Wednesday, May 23, 2012 – Channelling Their Inner Dragons As Pretenders of the Dextrous Dim Sum Sifus For A Day (or after reading Ben’s hilarious recap: The Tiny Food-Scrotums Challenge)
Episode 16 Recap
Overnight TV Ratings
Contestant Recipe – Prawn Stars (Sam Davis)
Ep 18, Friday, May 25, 2012 – MasterClass #3
Overnight TV Ratings
Masterclass – Gary’s Mums Lamb Stew with Dumplings (Gary Mehigan)
Masterclass – Vanilla Bean Panna Cotta with Cherry Soup (Matt Moran)
Masterclass – Raw Food Tasting Plate (Matt Moran)
Masterclass – Potato Gnocchi with Exotic Mushrooms, Rosemary and Tarragon (Gary Mehigan)
Mystery Box – Melting Moments Biscuits (Julia Taylor)
Invention Test – Jalapeno Poppers with Spicy Green Mole Sauce (Mindy Woods)
Bonus Recipe – Amina’s Pistachio and Turkish Delight
LOL, did George just say they must “cook” a 3-course meal that are raw for tomorrow’s immunity? I would love to see how they cook uncooked food…
I have to say with the lack of food focus on the show (again) this year, it is lucky they found a bunch of interesting contestants. Zany Alice, Frosty Julia, Intense Filippo, Jolly Amina, Headless-Chook-Leader Debra have certainly make the show a bit more interesting to watch than last year, and the past few episodes of not seeing a lot of Cryer Emma have made the show so so much watchable…
So it happened! Amina had the winning entrée and Audra prepared the best dish and handed the immunity pin to Mindy who, according to judges’ comments, had the worst dish tonight. Now let’s wait for the elimination episode with Mindy and Audra (and/or Amina) fighting to stay in the competition… Let’s all pray it will happen, that will be the episode to watch for this season. Will she hand in the pin and run, or will she keep the pin and fight, or the best scenario, give the pin to Audra (or Amina)?
Immunity Challenge – Salmon Sashimi (Audra Morrice)
Ep 22, Wednesday, May 30, 2012 – Backstabbing Their Way to A Charity Dinner
No Episode 22 Recap (journalists on strike)
Overnight TV Ratings
Was anyone fooled by the supposedly “donations” from the restaurants? The restaurants they went to, I’m sure (from a list they were given), would have been told in advance that the contestants might be coming that night to collect some supposedly “left-overs”. To give credit to the restaurants, some of the smaller donations were probably legitimate, but the bigger “donations” from some of the restaurants were probably from the chefs who were attending the dinner that next day to ensure they had at least some edible food for the elite palates, LOL. Another question, why didn’t they collect food that was still fit for consumption but had just gone past its used-by-date from the major supermarket sponsor of the show? If anyone had watched “The People’s Supermarket” that was shown last year on the ABC, and if the supermarkets here are anything like those from the UK, they would have got a bumper collection.
Contestant Recipe – Fish Pie (Andy Allen) Note: Rough Puff Pastry made by Audra, and really, the filling was made and cooked by someone who had never eaten fish pie before?
Name That Poultry (click image below to enlarge)
Hint: Use size of plate to approximate size of birds
Select Start-End below to reveal answers:
Start 1. Chicken 2. Duck 3. Quail 4. Turkey 5. Squab (Pigeon) 6. Spatchcock (Poussin) 7. Partridge 8. Guineafowl 9. Goose 10. Muttonbird End
Ep 24, Friday, June 1, 2012 – MasterClass #4
Overnight TV Ratings
Mystery Box – Pineapple and Tomato Jam Pork served with Egg Dumplings (Dalvinder Dhami)
Invention Test – Seafood for Two (Sam Davis)
Bonus Recipe –
Filippo’s Coconut and Almond Meringue Cake
Coconut and Almond Meringue Cake
If you saw this Coconut and Almond Meringue Cake by Filippo on MasterChef and thought it looked good, why not give it a go for dessert next time you have something special to celebrate! Topped with delicious strawberries, raspberries, mascarpone crème and finished with mint icing sugar, it will be remembered by all your guests!
Prep Time 1 hour 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
500 g Mascarpone Cheese
3 Egg, yolks
60 g Caster Sugar
1 Vanilla Bean, scraped
3 Egg, whites
150 mL Pouring Cream
6 Eggs, whites
65 g Caster Sugar
140 g Dried Desiccated Coconut
40 g Almond Meal
1 Vanilla Bean, scraped
150 g Icing Sugar, sifted
2 Heart Shape Cake Tin, with removable base (20-25cm heart shaped tins)
Mint Icing Sugar:
1 bunch Mint, washed and well dried (reserve a few sprigs for decoration)
200 g Icing Sugar, sifted
350 g Strawberries
50 g Raspberries
50 g Blueberries
1. For the Meringue, pre-heat oven at 140°C.
2. Cut out two heart shapes from baking paper using cake tin and set aside.
3. Beat egg whites to soft peaks and add caster sugar slowly while beating until firm peaks form.
4. Stir in coconut, almond meal and vanilla.
5. Fold in icing sugar. Spoon onto heart shaped baking paper in moulds and bake for 40-45 minutes until set.
6. Remove from oven and cool well.
7. For the Crème Filling, beat egg yolks with 30g caster sugar until very pale and fluffy.
8. Add mascarpone and vanilla and continue to beat until thick then refrigerate.
9. Beat egg whites until very thick with remaining 30g caster sugar (stiff peaks).
10. Beat pouring cream until thick and fold into egg whites, fold into other mixture and carefully refrigerate.
11. Mint Icing Sugar, blitz icing sugar with mint to a fine powder and sieve.
12. For the Berries, trim strawberries and quarter (leave 150g for the top of the cake).
13. To assemble, place 1 heart meringue on a cake stand and fill with ½ the crème. Top this layer with strawberries and dust mint icing (Don’t over fill with crème).
14. Place second layer on top cake and top with more crème.
15. Place whole strawberries on top around the perimeter and inside. Add raspberries and blueberries in the gaps.
16. Dust with mint sprigs picked.
This recipe may allow for different sized tins.
Contestant Recipe – Salmon Sashimi with Korean Dressing (Amina Elshafei)
Bonus Recipe – Seafood and Bacon Chowder (Kevin Perry’s Audition Recipe)
In today’s weekly Taste lift-out from the Herald-Sun newspaper, Matt Preston has written the first part of an article about the basic recipes everyone should know, especially aimed at future MasterChef contestants?
What is the big deal with Julia’s Melting Moments recipe? The way it had been talked about in the show was like that was her secret recipe that nobody knew about. In fact if you are a keen baker, you would be familiar with that recipe as it is basically a classic MM recipe. I had it written down years ago from somewhere and it has always been as I know it – 6 oz (180g) butter, 2 oz (60g) icing sugar, 6 oz (180g) plain flour and 2 oz (60g) cornflour or custard powder, and a little vanilla plus optional baking powder (to give the biscuits a better lift but not necessary if you don’t overwork the dough). As it is a very old recipe, it is very easy to remember using the ounce weight (1 oz = 30g approximately) of 6-2-6-2 to remember. I always use cornflour to make Melting Moments (which do not need to be sandwiched if you cannot be bothered) and custard powder to make Yo-Yos (always sandwiched with buttercream and/or jam). And if you decide not to sandwich the Yo-Yos, the individual biscuit will just be your regular Custard Biscuits with a dusting of icing sugar before serving. Easy!
As we are talking about melt-in-your-mouth biscuits, the basic shortbread recipe is just slightly different from the MM recipe. It is – 4 oz (120g) butter, 2 oz (60g) caster or icing sugar, 4 oz (120g) plain flour and 2 oz (60g) rice flour or fine semolina flour or cornflour plus a little optional vanilla or finely grated citrus zest. Again very easy to remember of 4-2-4-2 ratio. Or another way of remembering is 3-2-1 ratio of flour-butter-sugar (300g plain flour, 200g butter, 100g caster sugar) which makes good shortbreads too.
Contestant Recipe – Apricot Tarts (Audra Morrice)
Ep 29, Thursday, June 7, 2012 – Yes Siree! MasterChef Is Looking For The ‘Best’ Cook By Luck Of The Draw Or Waiting For Others To Stuff Up First & Get A Free Pass!
Episode 29 Recap
Overnight TV Ratings
Nothing more to say but it looked like the whole episode is a big setup to put Andy and Sam into the final elimination round as they were the only two (maybe Ben as the third option) who could handle the pressure so as not to shame the judges in front of the crowd! Imagine if Emma or Andrew were doing the cooking, they would be serving plates of tears or raw food… A little help here and a little help there from the judges to the weaker contestants to help them get through and edited out, I would not be surprised and was anyone really fooled as there was never going to be an elimination. As soon as George encouraged both of them to communicate and help each other (confused with team challenge, George?), that was the confirmation, no elimination! The whole thing was just the producers setting up their storyline and more faux drama of tension… Another tell-tale sign was that in all the previous real eliminations, all the other contestants were not present, but tonight, well guess what, they were all there to hear the ‘verdict’ so they could have that warm fuzzy moment. The whole week was a big paid advertisement for Tasmania Tourism, nothing of consequence actually happened. Well, they did make it absolutely sure that no one was going to win the immunity by reverting it back to one vs one challenge cooking the chef’s signature dish…
Also the sequence to the execution of the three challenges tonight just didn’t make any sense at all! Seriously, you failed to make a steak to order, then failed to make any good onion rings, wow, fantastic, you were now definitely ready to feed 50 people based on your crappy skills in the first two rounds! Seriously, someone is being paid to think up all these nonsense challenges?
Shouldn’t it be the other way round to make any sense? Cooked the best steak, cooked the best onion rings, then yes, you now earned the right to cook for 50 people for a reward (hey, what a great idea for future immunity challenges, no?) and just did not suit as an elimination challenges.
However not to take anything away from Andy and Sam who both did a brilliant job despite the extremely dodgy circumstances that put them there in the first place. They both stepped up to the plate and took the challenge head on. That’s what we have been asking to see on MasterChef, contestants who can cook under extreme pressure, and cook they did and it was an enthralling moment that made us cheered for them at home and something that has been missing from the show the past two years.
Now that we are familiar with the contestants, no surprise who will win the Invention Test on Sunday with Rick Stein and go on to challenge Jamie Oliver, just have a look at the First Look video…
Ep 30, Friday, June 8, 2012 – MasterClass #5
Overnight TV Ratings
Masterclass – Roasted Pork Rack with Braised Vegetables Farro Pepitas and Date Puree (Gary Mehigan)
Masterclass – Salmon Two Ways (George Calombaris)
Masterclass – Mojito Genoese (Lorraine Pascale)
Mystery Box – Spiced Poached Meringue with Chocolate Custard and Baked Meringues (Kylie Millar)
Invention Test (Morocco/Prawns) – Pan fried King Prawns with Red Harissa (Jules Pike – team captain, Tregan Borg, Alice Zaslavsky)
Invention Test (Morocco/Prawns) – Sumac School Prawns (Jules Pike – team captain, Tregan Borg, Alice Zaslavsky)
Invention Test (Morocco/Prawns) – Rustic Bread (Jules Pike – team captain, Tregan Borg, Alice Zaslavsky)
Bonus Recipe – Andy’s Caesar San Choy Bow
MasterChef judge Gary Mehigan says Channel Ten should consider scaling back its once-top rating show to once a week
No, Gary, scaling back is not the answer if the show keeps setting up unfair, ridiculous challenges, wantonly changing of the rule midway through tasting (a prime example tonight of suddenly deciding that Ben’s dish was not up to scratch and did a switcheroo with Andy’s dish making that team third overall, if not they might have ended up last and had to potentially cook that bottarga and result in the team being in the elimination – so the judges have potentially saved Andy and either Sam and Ben for the second time in less than a week from elimination), not focusing on the cooking and instead on the silly melodrama. Just let the skill of the cooking creates its own drama which is 100% more interesting than the producers trying to set up melodrama purposely. Also try to choose contestants who are actually good instead of those that have no basic skills. Is that why you are so cranky this year having to deal with hopeless contestants day in day out? And I guess that is also the reason why so few recipes are being published because most of them are hopeless recipes cooked by hopeless cooks not worthy of being published? It is also very childish behaviour of purposely withholding certain recipes and then waiting for fans to ‘like’ their facebook page and asking for those recipes before they ‘graciously’ published it.
Even as we have some ideas that contestants like Audra and Amina are capable cooks, we have virtually seen nothing of them during Mystery Box and Invention Test, why? The only times we have seen them cook are during immunity or elimination challenges, or when Amina was the team leader in group challenges, and then she was not doing any cooking there. These are the main reasons the show is rapidly declining because generally we as viewers do not want to be treated like idiots who cannot see through all the smoke and mirrors. Only silly idiots like me who are hardcore fans are still watching, simply because there is nothing else on TV I want to watch. The format of 6 nights a week is actually the only good thing left in the whole franchise.
Pressure Test – George’s Greek Salad (George Calombaris)
Here’s the second and final part of basic recipes from Matt Preston, this time on basic sweet recipes.
The best episode this year by a mile! Thoroughly enjoyed every minute of this episode and loved how Jamie was giving tips and hints all through the episode, that’s what mentoring is all about! Is there anyway he could be lured to become a semi-permanent judge or even just a mentor on this show? I know as a permanent judge is too much to hope for due to his busy TV shows, but as a semi-permanent judge would be awesome! Well, I can hope, can’t I? LOL.
Immunity Challenge – Antipasto Plank (Jules Pike)
It is unlikely that Jamie’s antipasti recipe will be published since he was making them up as he went in the challenge. However here are some recipes that look like something similar to the combination of what he did:
Bonus Recipe – Italian-style antipasti plate (Jamie Oliver)
Bonus Recipe – Barbecued langoustines (scampi) with aioli (Jamie Oliver)
Bonus Recipe – The quickest tomato sauce (Jamie Oliver) Note: He did the whole squids in tomato sauce but used bottled passata poured onto chargrilled whole squids.
Bonus Recipe – Chargrilled whole squid with chilli and mint (Jamie Oliver) Note: This was how he prepared the whole squids.
Bonus Recipe – Antipasti of mozzarella, chilli, and lemon crostini (Jamie Oliver)
Bonus Recipe – Italian tomato and bread salad (Jamie Oliver)
Bonus Recipe – Amazing Pickled and Marinated Vegetables (Jamie Oliver) Note: He did not make any pickles in the challenge but he usually has some sort of pickles in his antipasti.
Apart from those listed above, he also made zucchini trifolati served on grilled bruschetta, and warm treviso salad.
Isn’t it interesting that numbers were important in tonight’s team challenge? Three contestants per shift. So if there was indeed an elimination in last Thursday’s episode in Tasmania, that would put one team with one person short and have to struggle with a two-person shift! Makes you wonder, doesn’t it?
Contestant Recipe – Thai Green Chicken Curry (Ben Milbourne)
Ep 36, Friday, June 15, 2012 – MasterClass #6
Overnight TV Ratings
Masterclass – Asian Ribs (Matt Moran)
Masterclass – Greek Ribs (George Calombaris)
Masterclass – Apple Strudel with Cream and Custard (Gary Mehigan)
Masterclass – Eggplant Chutney (George Calombaris)
MasterChef producers bend the rules to allow Audra Morrice to compete in reality cooking show
Are we really surprised? This year the show has made it very clear that they are incapable or unable to devise challenges, especially immunity and elimination challenges, that are fair and with integrity. Yes, there were plenty of mistakes too in the first year, but the audience let them pass as rookie mistakes. But now in its fourth year, still so many incomprehensible challenges are just ridiculous! Year after year, they also kept choosing contestants that do not appear to know the basics, why? And now this news (and Julia who also sells cupcakes on the weekends). Well, at least now we understand why Audra who seems to be a very capable cook, but has not been very creative, especially not cooking well during Mystery Box and Invention Test. She is just this year’s Julie Goodwin who cooks homely comfort food, albeit South-East Asian comfort food, really well but struggles when asked to do creative, innovative combination of flavours. And the producers are still scratching their heads wondering why the ratings has tumbled this year!
Week 7 (17/6/2012 to 22/6/2012)
Ep 37, Sunday, June 17, 2012 – Three Adams & A Kate Rose to the Top While One Adam & Two Kates Stumbled into Elimination, But Where Were The Julies?
Episode 37 Recap
Overnight TV Ratings
Mystery Box – winner (Adam Liaw’s) – Braised Pork belly, soft boiled egg and handmade noodles (Audra Morrice)
Mystery Box (Kate Bracks’) – Sticky Fig and Caramel Cake with Vanilla Custard (Debra Sederlan)
OMG, Melbourne just had an earth tremor lasting for about a minute just before 9pm, the whole building just shook… Scary!
Immunity Challenge – Tea Smoked Duck Breast with Chinese inspired Salad (Amina Elshafei)
How good was Chef Kumar Mahadevan as a mentor in the kitchen? It was so refreshing to watch after the predictable antics of Gary and George this season! And George was nowhere to be found in this spicy episode, LOL… As it was with Jamie Oliver last week along with the chef at Shangri-La Hotel, Steven Krasicki who watched over the contestants in the team challenge, it just proved that you didn’t have to do silly unconvincing acting like the three judges to drum up faux drama for it to be enjoyable and engaging television.
Wedding Recipe – Vegetable Korma (Kumar Mahadevan)
Bwahahaha, what a bunch of no-hoper contestants! As I have said before in the first week, the selection process of the contestants is so flawed. What the? They entered into the competition to learn? Just get an apprenticeship if you want to learn… That’s why the competition has become such a big farce. They should all be eliminated just as Adam jokingly announced the other day. Being a teacher and all, I was at the very least expecting Ben to encourage Emma to do her best, stand on her own two feet and earn her place in the competition rather than mollycoddling her and giving up so she could have a hollow victory! Yeah, Ben, your motto to your students is to always follow your dream, but immediately throw that dream away as soon as a girl is involved, LOL. Great inspirational stuff, that was… NOT!
Name That Cake
Select Below for Possible Answers (Can you fill in the unknown cakes?):
1. Kugelhopf (Gugelhupf) 2. Flourless Orange Cake 3. Nid d’Abeilles or Bienenstich (Bee Sting Cake) 4. Orange Poppy Seed Cake 5. Devil’s Food Cake? 6. Dobos Torte 7. Gâteau Opera 8. ? 9. Gâteau Fraisier? 10. Chilled Cheesecake? 11. Black Forest Cherry Cake 12. Red Velvet Cake 13. Fruit Cake 14. Madeira Cake? 15. Marble Cake 16. Gâteau Le Diablo? 17. Kouign Amann (Breton Cake)? 18. Gâteau Basque? 19. Pandan Chiffon Cake? 20. ? 21. Banana Cake? 22. Battenburg Cake 23. Mississippi Mud Cake? 24. New York Cheesecake 25. Sachertorte 26. Victoria Sponge Sandwich 27. Carrot Cake 28. ? 29. Hummingbird Cake 30. Upside-Down Pineapple Cake 31. Gâteau Concord End of answers
Ep 42, Friday, June 22, 2012 – MasterClass #7
Overnight TV Ratings
Masterclass – French Onion Soup with Gruyere Toasts (Gary Mehigan)
Masterclass – Black and Gold Roasted Spatchcock with Pomme Galette Mushroom Puree and baby vegetables (George Calombaris)
Masterclass – Pain Perdu with Citrus Salad and Honey Ice Cream (Philippe Mouchel)
Hmm, is there disharmony among the judges this year? I have noticed a few occasions that George and MattP seemed to stick together and disagree with Gary. The first time I noticed it was during the fiasco of swapping Ben’s dish with Andy’s dish in episode 31 when George went up to MattP and whispered into his ear about swapping the dish, and Gary said clearly that he disagreed after George and MattP decided on the swap. And then last week and this week during the immunity challenges, there seemed to be some tension as well regarding portion size for tasting and the decisions on the better dishes.
And in tonight episode I just realized that each judge made a decision and scored one course rather than a combined decision on all three courses? Hmmm, not too sure what to make of this…
Immunity Challenge – Goat’s Cheese & Raisin Ravioli with Pan Seared Prawns (Tregan Borg)
Have to give points to Julia for trying to sell ice to the Eskimos with her sunken Lemon Cake. In the end whether she succeeded or that the judges just chose hers over Debra’s to avoid another episode of the disastrous Dim-Sum-style leadership, we will never know. I don’t believe for one moment that her cake was supposed to sink like that, it was more a case of the oven door being opened and closed so many times by other contestants while her cake was baking that the heat dissipated too much and not hot enough to penetrate to the centre of the cake leaving the centre uncooked.
However, I was intrigued enough to search for a gooey-centre lemon cake, or something like a Lemon Fondant Pudding, but not like the Lemon Delicious Pudding which has a sauce underneath the cake rather than in the centre. Well guess what, there is such a thing! It is a Lemon Lava Cake, a recipe from an American restaurant chain. However, after reading comments on some forums, it was supposed to be baked in individual ramekin, the way it was sold, to get the gooey lemon centre, but the recipe given by the restaurant chain was baked in a large baking tray, so not sure how that would have worked? Another problem for us would be the Jell-O instant lemon pudding mix which I’m sure is not available here, might have to look more carefully next time. I wonder if the Cottee’s instant vanilla pudding mix is similar enough as a substitute by adding grated lemon zest or lemon essence for the lemon flavour, and maybe also replacing some of the milk with lemon juice? Or maybe just use lemon curd?
On another note, I found a Youtube video (in 3 parts) from a Taiwanese cookery programme that demonstrates how to make the Guotie (鍋貼 Potstickers) that Audra won with in the first part of this episode, there are a lot of tips and techniques being taught which would be very useful if you are going to attempt making them. Unfortunately it is in Chinese Mandarin with bits of Taiwanese thrown in, but here they are if you are interested – Part 1 (ingredient list & filling), Part 2 (dough), Part 3 (cooking & method list). The wrapping technique in the video is the simplest and typical homemade-style with open ends for the guotie dumplings, but here’s another one showing the pleated technique for the typical boiled or steamed jiaozi dumplings.
Contestant Recipe – Chicken Ballotine (Beau Cook)
Ep 48, Friday, June 29, 2012 – MasterClass #8 in Kangaroo Island
Overnight TV Ratings
Masterclass – Roasted Lamb Rack and Braised Lamb Neck with Pumpkin and Sheeps Milk Feta (Matt Moran)
Masterclass – Harissa chicken skewers with sheeps milk yoghurt raita (Matt Moran)
Masterclass – Sheeps Milk Yogurt Mousse with Honey Toasted Muesli and Rhubarb Syrup (Gary Mehigan)
Masterclass – Marron Sliders with Coleslaw (George Calombaris)
Just been thinking over the weekend about the three eliminations this week leading to the Top 10 going oversea next week and how are they going to wrap up the season by the end of July? Assuming only one elimination during their oversea trip, they will be back for the week beginning July 15 with the Top 9. My guess is with the two weeks remaining, the penultimate week will have the usual two eliminations with 7 going into the final week and one elimination per day from Sunday to Thursday in the final week! That will neatly wrap up Season 4 by Sunday, July 29 (assuming the finale night) and probably leading into the premiere of MasterChef Australia All-Stars on the same night.
Invention Test – Blue Cheese and Honey Ice cream Sundae with Warm Chocolate Fudge Sauce Honeyed Walnuts Muscatels and Orange Isomalt (Kylie Millar)
Invention Test – Vegemite and White Chocolate Macarons (Julia Taylor)
Wow, the preview for tomorrow’s Pressure Test looks incredible!
Set by the pâtissier who taught Adriano Zumbo, Vincent Gadan.
Woopsy-doopsy, MasterChef Australia must be desperate for ratings to claim Adriano Zumbo was trained by Vincent Gadan in the promo/preview last night as Adriano has just tweeted today that it was a false statement. The statement was an introduction by MattP while Vincent was in the other part of the kitchen hidden from the contestants so he must not have heard it. And surprisingly that statement was cut from the episode tonight!
Ep 51, Tuesday, July 3, 2012 – Bread Without Butter
Episode 51 Recap
Overnight TV Ratings
MasterChef finally reached the top for the first time this season
Contestant Recipe – Caramel Salted Parfait Caramel Popcorn and Lime Tuile (Julia Taylor)
Merle Parrish MasterChef bound again – for MasterChef All-Stars?
Ep 54, Friday, July 6, 2012 – MasterClass #9
Overnight TV Ratings
Masterclass – Blue eye trevalla with Black Mussels and Basil Butter (Gary Mehigan) Note: What’s in a name, blue-eye trevalla or blue-eye cod?
Masterclass – Cauliflower and white chocolate ice cream with caramelised bread cauliflower puree and nutmeg sponge (Matt Moran)
Masterclass – Beef Onion and Guinness pies (Gary Mehigan)
Bonus Recipe – Eggs and Sujuc (Turkish Sausage) Breakfast Tagine (Amina Elshafei)
Bonus Recipe – Korean Bulgogi and Endive Salad (Amina Elshafei)
Contestant Recipe – Squid ink gnocchi with deep fried artichokes and bitter lemon emulsion (Alice Zaslavsky & Wade Drummond)
Contestant Recipe – Roman Seafood stew (Julia Taylor & Mindy Woods)
Contestant Recipe – Quattro formaggi pizza (Alice Zaslavsky)
Immunity Challenge – Artichoke soup with chicken dumplings (Antonio Carluccio)
Immunity Challenge – Stuffed squid piazzaiola style (Antonio Carluccio)
Immunity Challenge – Rabbit with artichokes onions potatoes and rosemary (Antonio Carluccio)
Bonus Recipe – Lemon and Ricotta Tart (Antonio Carluccio)
Bonus Recipe – Zabaglione al Moscato (Antonio Carluccio)
Bonus Recipe – Amaretti (Antonio Carluccio)
Bonus Recipe – Apple Strudel (Antonio Carluccio)
Contestant Recipe – Pork Lasagne (Audra Morrice)
LOL, Monticello or Monticchiello? The editors on this show cannot even get the name of the town right! Anyway I found two blogs, one in English and the other in Italian, mentioning the shoot taking place in Monticchiello during May and I think there is a clue there that indicates the elimination took place after the gastro hit the contestants and the crews as the blog in Italian wrote that the shoot in Monticchiello was postponed for a few days!
It was unfortunate that Julia overbaked her tart base, I wonder if she was still suffering from the gastro to be so careless? At one point she did ask what the oven temperature was, maybe another case of the oven not working properly? Also at first I thought why was she baking the Austrian’s Linzertorte (this is Gary’s recipe) for a Tuscan feast? However after doing a bit of investigation, Italians do have their version which is a homely Crostata di Marmellata. There, I learn something tonight, haha. Finally, it is interesting to note that the pastry for both Linzertorte and Crostata di Marmellata do not need blind baking!
Ep 60, Friday, July 13, 2012 – MasterClass #10 at Antica Corte Pallavicina, Parma, Italy
Overnight TV Ratings
Masterclass – Clay baked Guinea fowl with culatello and garden salad (Massimo Spigaroli)
Masterclass – Vegetable lasagne with roasted tomato sauce (Neil Perry)
Masterclass – Parmesan risotto with poached egg (George Calombaris)
Bonus Masterclass (web only recipe) – Chocolate semifreddo with chestnut creme and orange caramel (Gary Mehigan)
LOL, what’s going on? Six of the nine dishes for the magazine cover-shoot Invention Test were presented on board/plank, I think they were suffering from jamieitis after coming back from Italy!
Bonus Recipe – Audra’s Aussie Asian Lamb Pie
Bonus Recipe – Ravjul (Maltese Ravioli) and Broad Bean Salad (Tregan Borg)
Woman’s Day spills beans on MasterChef Top 5 finalists – No spoiler in this article
Contestant Recipe – Chocolate Frangipane & Vincotto Pear Tart (Audra Morrice)
Ep 66, Friday, July 20, 2012 – MasterClass #11
Overnight TV Ratings
Masterclass – Bistecca with roasted tubers and brown onion puree (Gary Mehigan)
Masterclass – Matt Preston’s Soup (Matt Preston)
Masterclass – Cola baked chicken (Matt Preston)
Masterclass – Black banana ice cream (Matt Preston)
Masterclass – Scottish butter cake with poached quince and puree and creamy rice ice cream (Gary Mehigan)
Aww, feel really sorry for Julia who was being shafted again (how many times now? Remember having to cook in a house with no kitchen; her sinking cake after asking if anyone else was going to use the oven and no one bothered to answer; Mindy hogging the pasta boiler/Wade stealing her pasta sauce in Italy and she never complained once!) after Audra decided to take the remaining dessert ahead of her. Karma, Audra! I thought the steamed snapper would be more up Audra’s alley as so far her only desserts I can remember were all pastry based, like the two tarts, the apple pie and also the rough puff she did for the fish pies. And, boy, was she lucky that Guillaume caught her cake mistake early and she had time to re-make the cake, or she would be up the proverbial creek without a paddle like Kylie! Julia just could not seem to catch a break in the competition, now I really want Julia to take out the title this year, fingers crossed! Go, Julia!
LOL, how adorable were Ben and Andy tonight when choosing their dishes, ahh, the great bromance continues…
Phew! That was close, I thought Julia was a goneski! Thank goodness it was Ben as he was just out of his depth at this point of the competition. Although I now really want Julia to win, her weakness in savoury dishes would be her stumbling block, but hopefully she at least gets into the final two!
What a big surprise the last two episodes though is Andy who has come leaps and bounds into contention to win! If the past trend of winners/runner-ups is to be followed, he is going to win at this rate. He put what he had learnt through the weeks into practice, he listened to the judges and made changes as needed during challenges, he was not afraid to try new techniques or different cuisines. He also has that essential quality of humility that had been shown in the past three winners! All these will stand him in good stead in front of Audra and Mindy who both admittedly are very good competent cooks in their own rights but both have not really shown any inclination to learn any new techniques and refused to practise/attempt other cuisines other than that of their comfort of Asian inspired cuisine. I think that will be their downfalls.
Contestant Recipe – Braised Beef Shin, Potato Mash, Bone Marrow and Vegetables (Andy Allen)
Contestant Recipe – Spiced Red Braised Beef Short Ribs, Spiced Pickles, Soft Boiled Egg (Audra Morrice)
Yeah! What a relief! Julia makes Final 3! So nervous for her as once again she tried to do too much in the time allocated and nearly did not plate up in time… Making puff pastry in 90 minutes plus all the other elements, wow, respect, even if it is rough puff (if it is the real deal even more respect)! Andy once again produced the best dish, followed by Julia and third was Audra. Bring on the finale tomorrow and looking forward to All Stars the night after!
FINAL TWO CONTESTANTS SPOILER or RED HERRING?
Have the editors let the cat out of the bag with who the final two are? Do not click to enlarge the photo if you don’t want to know! Look at the reflection on the cloche (left of image), the stance of the final two contestants and the positions of their hands and compare them to the stance of the final three on the right of the image, clue or red herring? Are the producers sneaky enough to film different contestants standing in front of the cloche to mislead us?
Challenge 1: 35 Hot Entrées Each for 105 MasterChef Fans
Andy (plating helpers: Ben & Beau) – Gary7 + George8 + Matt8 = 23
Audra (plating helpers: Amina & TK) – Gary8 + George7 + Matt7 = 22
Julia (plating helpers: Mindy & Kylie) – Gary7 + George9 + Matt9 = 25
Challenge 2: Potential National Dish Invention Test
Andy – Gary10 + George9 + Matt9 (+ 23) = 51
Julia – Gary7 + George7 + Matt7 (+ 25) = 46
Challenge 3: Gaytime Goes Nuts by Christine Manfield
Andy – Gary8 + George8 + Matt9 (+ 51) = 76
Julia – Gary7 + George7 + Matt8 (+ 46) = 68
Andy has taken out the Title! He is also the youngest winner ever! Congrats!
Glad for Julia too who received $15,000 from American Express and an offer from Adriano Zumbo to work as paid apprentice in his kitchen.
Contestant Recipe – Rare Seared Beef fillet with horseradish cream baby turnips and sweet potato (Julia Taylor)
Contestant Recipe – Seared tuna with cauliflower and squid ink puree apple and radish salad (Andy Allen)
Contestant Recipe – Egg net Ma hor Sambal prawns Tamarind dressing (Audra Morrice)
Invention Test – Modern seafood basket (Andy Allen)
Invention Test – Rack of lamb with lemon myrtle and macadamia crust lemon fondant potatoes and vegetables (Julia Taylor)
Pressure Test – Gaytime goes nuts (Christine Manfield)
MasterChef wins the ratings marathon
What the MasterChef final taught us (and it’s nothing to do with cooking)
Adam Liaw’s Season 4 Reflections
Mexico the go for MasterChef winner
George Calombaris expects winner of the next series of MasterChef Australia to open own restaurant
Ten ready to serve up Heston Blumenthal?
MasterChef Mag axed as a monthly
Restaurateur Matt Moran gives MasterChef the chop
Nguyen to host MasterChef Vietnam
Update October 23, 2012: Marco Pierre White (not Heston Blumenthal as rumoured previously) has been confirmed as the host of Masterchef Australia : The Professionals which will go to air in early 2013 during the unveiling of Network 10’s program slate for 2013 this morning.
Update May 20, 2013: Kitchen Whiz returns with new host Alice Zaslavsky
Update August 7, 2013: MasterChef champ Andy Allen tips a winner, gets a job and the girl
Julie Goodwin’s recipes on Today 2012:
January 31, 2012 Vegetable lasagne
February 7, 2012 Chicken Caesar salad
February 14, 2012 Fudgy chocolate heart cakes
February 21, 2012 Ricotta pancakes with passionfruit syrup
February 24, 2012 Lamb Pie
February 28, 2012 Spinach and ricotta cannelloni
March 6, 2012 Mexican steak
March 13, 2012 Chilli jam chicken stir fry
March 20, 2012 Baked Bacon and Tomato Risotto
March 27, 2012 Lemon Coconut Cake
April 3, 2012 Lamb leg roast
April 19, 2012 Pork Pad Thai
April 24, 2012 Pork schnitzel
May 1, 2012 Roast Pumpkin, Spinach and Ricotta Pie
May 8, 2012 Coco choc banana muffins
May 15, 2012 Thai red chicken curry
May 22, 2012 Hearty pea and ham soup
May 29, 2012 Cheesy Eggplant Bake
June 12, 2012 Chilli Pork Stir Fry
June 19, 2012 Coconut pie
July 17, 2012 Mexican Beef Hot Pot
August 14, 2012 Bacon Wrapped Meatloaf
August 23, 2012 Carrot cake with cream cheese icing
August 27, 2012 Minestrone Soup
September 3, 2012 Buffalo Wings With A Honey Mustard Sauce
September 12, 2012 Julie Goodwin’s Tuna Mornay
October 15, 2012 Beef nachos