Masterchef Recap: But first, let me take a selfie

Heya Trashies!

After last episode’s downbeat ending, will the pair challenge bring the heat back up? I think Malibu and Ahran get paired up and I’m no longer so sanguine as I was last week that they’ll get on, but we’ll see.

There’s a brief season recap and a pre-cap that suggests a lot of carnage. This season the trailers have started being slightly more truthful and less revealing so maybe it is going to be a bit of a bloodbath. There’s a hint two might be going home. (again).


Oh, bloodbath! I’m in!

I rewatched ‘Countess Dracula’ and ‘To Love a Vampire’ and I can’t see why she reminds me a bit of Ingrid Pitt, but she still does. I’d like to stress I don’t believe she’s a vampire or in any way evil. Although she is an investment director so she might be evil on that count.

Actually with 15 of them, how are they going to cook in pairs? Malibu and Ahran get asked who they don’t want to cook with, and she corrects his pronunciation again. I bet in retrospect she wishes she hadn’t done that as it is now glaringly obvious who she’s getting paired with.

Anyway Evil-Courtney, who isn’t so much Evil as pragmatic but ‘Pragmatic-Courtney’ doesn’t sound so good, gets to pick the pairs. I bet Ahran wishes she hadn’t made such a deal about her either now.


Hmm, Malibu and Ahran. Someone was just talking about them.

She gets a pass, so only 14 cooks left and that answers my question. The two losing pairs will enter a pressure test. She seems to pick the pairs to cause as many problems as possible for her fellow contestants – except I doubt Big Willie has a target on him, or Magic as they get on with her.

Christian is paired up with Francis B, Jaimee and Elizabeth, Victoria with Christine, Cutter with Dan, Big Willie with Daniel, Ahran with Malibu. Ahran comments it’s ‘so unfair’ that she’s paired up with Malibu, but she helped make the lumpy unpleasant bed they are now sleeping in so toughen up girl.

Remaining pair is Magic and Elise. Which I’m tempted to say makes Elise the luckiest mini ever as she’s likely to coast through on his tail. Elizabeth might be in trouble purely as the ever lovely Jaimee seems to be prone to meltdown mumbling if its not baking, and that won’t help communication. Fingers crossed it doesn’t happen but she had her confidence knocked last week so I’m worried.

They’re cooking Surf and Turf. That’s a pretty broad church, its almost like saying they’re cooking meat. So I doubt any of them are panicking right now, as it pretty much its ‘any land animal plus any sea based animal’. Which is a pet peeve – crabs and fish and so on are animals – they aren’t mammals which is where the confusion tends to come in. But still, ever since I saw that mistake in ‘Dead Like Me’ and many other places since its bugged me. Really really bugged me. That’s my Sheldon style rant over.


Animal! And probably not too happy about that right now.

Gordy scatters the ‘amazings’ around for a while just in case none of the mini’s have ever heard him speak before. The pairs have 5 minutes to plan the dish and get ingredients, 60 overall to make it. I takes me 5 minutes to make a cup of tea before I even start thinking about what to cook so I sympathize with them. There doesn’t seem to be any tagging in and out like in previous years, so it shouldn’t be that hard for them. Hah. The couples are knocking ideas back and forth with varying degrees of success.


A slightly stalkerish shot of Jaimee. No it wasn’t me.

Cutter is trying to persuade Dan that they need to marry the proteins up, but its falling on deaf ears. They waste time and Cutter isn’ t happy with the choices they made, a big steak of venison and one of Tuna. Its a bit over the top and I can see why Cutter thinks they’ve messed up.

Magic is making a blood orange foam for mint and lemon caviar and a rack of lamb with a crab risotto. It sounds a bit mad, and Elise says it was her idea – that could come back and bite her on the ass as it sounds very risky.

Cutter is claiming to do some tuna sauce over his venison, and Gordy pushes to find out how badly they’re getting on. I don’t know whose at fault more, whether Dan is a space-cadet off on a wild tangent or Cutter is like my Mom, one of those people who equate ‘being listened to’ with ‘agreed with’. In the end, they’re both going down together so it almost doesn’t matter. Gordy exhorts them to get it together, and says it doesn’t sound right.


Serve us a Venison steak with a Tuna Steak on top, I dare you

Ahran and Malibu’s dish sounds the best so far, a spicy pork belly and crab stack with Kimchi rice and guacamole. Malibu still can’t get her name right, pronouncing it Eye-rahn again. I’ve mentioned before that my Dad called me ‘Danny’ for years as that was my dog’s name, and he called Danny by my name. Slightly embarrassing when Danny was being yelled at to stop licking his balls, so my sympathy for her mispronounced name is over. Malibu has agreed that she’s the head chef which seems sensible though.

So it gets to judging without any real drama. Ahran and Malibu are up first with theirs. TG plays up the ‘Courtney pitted you together to mess you up blah blah’ stuff, and then Courtney pipes up they worked together well and seemed to do a good dish. She still refuses to make the full transition to pantomime villain that the producers want I think.


Bit scruffy, but pass me the bib

It goes over well and Ahran says they’ve learned and grown, which is what the producers want to hear.


We learned to pretend to get on, so we don’t get picked on again

I strongly suspect they decided to implement Ahran’s vision, so Malibu took a back seat– which is much better than fighting each other to get ‘input’ on everything and making some dogs dinner mess, so well done to the pair of them.

Next up Cutter and Dan. They get dramatic music and we quickly find out why. Make room at the bus queue, its about to get messy.


Earlier was sarcasm, but they went there. Two steaks.

Cutters fears, if anything, were underestimating the scale of the disaster and he blames Dan. The problem is they don’t even agree what happened. Its an autofail as it is just some loin steaks seared off and placed on tiny garnish. I feel particularly sorry for the poor carrot stuck in the middle of the mess. Just to be clear though, I’d happily eat a plate like that, but I’m a pig. It’s not a well thought out dish by any means. Gordy hates it, so do the others, but then they were going to. Bastage is sneering about it, and makes them throw it away. Well he was going to pull out his party piece at some point.


Probably for the best.

I don’t really approve of the plate chucking antics much, but it was an absolute fail and you know Bastage is going to do this sort of thing sooner or later.

Could we tell who is most to blame? Cutter could have grabbed more ingredients when he saw it was going wrong, but 5 minutes isn’t a long time when a conversation goes nowhere. Dan doesn’t want to play the blame game.


Because he’d be blamed.

Magic and Elise present something that looks a bit worrying.


Slightly red?Its just foam Christine, calm down.

Elise commits a faux pas, she argues with Gordy that she did cook the lamb right when he says she didn’t.  He says the fat wasn’t rendered before they stuck yoghurt on it. Give in Elise. Gordy hates the dish, you’re not helping now by arguing.

Elizabeth and Jaimee bring up a lamb and red snapper dish and they’ve used the bones to make a sort of Gateway Arch style effect, which looks weird to me. It goes down well though.

Big Willie and Daniel make seared ahi tuna on forbidden rice, with meso fried chicken. Gordy likes it.

Christine and Victoria are up with a monkfish wrapped in pork belly over green apple risotto, and TG loves it.

Christian and Francis B are up, and Courtney thinks they’ll fail, making spicy rib eye and crab. Gordy berates them for presenting something that either one could knock up in 20 minutes, and says its school dinner level. More evidence the judges went to Hogworts as here’s their food and an actual British School Dinner side by side (ish):




Can you guess which one was cooked at Masterchef? Me neither.

My tie was red and black, otherwise that could have been taken in my old school canteen. Course that was pre-Jamie Oliver and his crusade. It was hilarious when that happened to see all the kids getting pasties and hot chips passed through fences at lunchtime by their parents.

Gordy makes them agree that its no good and bland. He  is making them come across as losers. That feels a bit forced, it didn’t look all that bad.

Victoria and Christine win, by a long chalk according to Gordy. Ahran shows the instincts for social survival that High School kids have and says how great it was to work with Malibu and how much she’d like to do it again. Honest, no take backs.


After Hell freezes over.

No I imagine she’s being genuine, especially after she saw how going to war with him just started to make her and him the center of a circus with no good ending for either of them.

So the errant losers are left, and I can’t believe Christian and Daniel are really anything else but dramatic padding here. I’m very wrong though – Elise and Magic are safe. Elise is adamant they deserved it, but Magic is not, he’s welling up with tears. A healthy dose of cold, sensible, self-appraisal is better than stubbornly refusing to admit any failings if you want to improve, but he’s probably being too hard on himself.


You got through so…Oh God she’s going for your neck Magic! Run!

Ahem. Genuinely nice of Christine to be supportive. It doesn’t look like Evil-Courtney is too happy about the way things went either, did she get on with Cutter? Can’t remember. She only helped Francis B last time as he wasn’t Malibu.

OK so its a four way cook off. A they’re making vegetarian spring rolls. Big pointer with these is no matter what you put in them (almost anything), or wrap them in (as you can use a variety of things) you have to wrap them up tight if you deep fry them. They need to seal up, so the outside is crispy fried, and the insides are steamed. Get that wrong and you have greasy muck sticks.

They have the usual pantry of vegetables and flour, and they have 60 minutes to decide their fate. Dan is feeling confidant having made wrapped dumplings and so on before. He utters the immortal ‘I’m the guy to beat’ which could be a portent of doom if I ever heard one.

Cutter has eaten these, so at least he knows what they taste like. Dan is using the pasta machine to make his dough pancakes wrapper, which surely risks making it too thin.


But first, let me take a selfie

I’m not sure which one of them it was that said that about two going home, but it’s a bit harsh.

Christian gets pointed at as doing well, one of Cutter’s have burst. Francis B had his pot too cool, and is trying to brown them off in a pan. ‘Eek’ sums that up.

So they’re up, with few hiccups and Dan Wu is convinced he’s aced it. Arguably being born in China may have helped here, who knows. Cough. First up is Christian.


One word – Appetizing!

Christian’s look good, if a little pale and dissimilar sizes, but they do look good. TG likes them with some minor errors and he sounds well placed.

Francis B is up.


One word – screwed.

The sauce looks gloopy too. They’re greasy, its not going well for Francis B. The cold oil was his bugbear, it soaked in but the filling was wrong too. Francis B is in trouble yet again. Dan Wu is up.


Pretty good.

They sound great, sauce looks nice – you can keep water chestnuts as far as I’m concerned but that’s just personal preference. Gordy however is not impressed. He thought Dan could do a lot better – maybe so, but I can’t see his ‘average’ rolls being chosen over the greasy mess of Francis B’s. Cutter is up.


Where’s me sauce?

Not great. Bastage isn’t happy with them, they’re too sweet and the late additions weren’t crispy – which of course Bastage knew so he checked them I’m sure.

Sooo its judging time. TG bangs on about it being the hardest thing in the kitchen ever. They must wish they could bring in lifesized dolls of themselves with ‘Never in the history of Masterchef’, ‘the hardest decision ever in this kitchen’, and my favorite ‘You’re worst dish’ pre-recorded on whatever it is that makes those freakish dolls talk. The big fluffy scary faced ones? Just me then.

Christian gets the accolade for having the best spring rolls, beating Dan Wu who is turning into a persistent under-achiever. He is safe but gets a slapped wrist for not being as good as he ought to have been.

So it’s Francis B and Cutter left. Are they sending both home? No, Cutter is safe, surely by the skin of his teeth. Francis B fails to dodge this last bullet and is out. Bastage gives it the whole ‘Courtney’s plan backfired’ but picking pairs just sounds like a crapshoot not an evil masterplan for world domination.

So that’s it for Francis B. Was he really a front runner who fell? I seem to remember him getting into trouble lots of times. There was a rough justice in him going this week as his spring rolls did seem to be the worst. Oh well its done for him now, the sinister blood red tinges of his ‘best of’ reel plays and he’s out.


Now there is only one Francis. But its not him.

I didn’t really pay attention to next weeks preview, I was too happy that this episode has at least come back to form after the diabolic mess of last week’s episode. And of course I’m happy that Jaimee is through again.

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