Don’t get me wrong I like Maggie Beer, but I wouldn’t be running up and hugging her like Tracy did tonight when she walked through the door, oh wait…she did that as she’s known Maggie since she was a little girl as she went to school with Maggie’s daughter. Rachael’s getting all gooey though, well so she says, I would say she’s gushing.
Onto the mystery box picked by Maggie herself…there’s verjuice, an octopus, a pear, chocolate, parsley, bay leaves, caper berries, umeboshi (it is a Japanese salty plum of some description)…oh and the octopus hasn’t been tenderised and there’s a bottle of Vino Cotto with the staples under the bench. 60 minutes to cook and 5 dishes will be tasted.
There’s a lot of bashing and smashing going on while people are tenderising the octopus and Laura takes it outside to smash it against the steps as it is how her dad would do it…oh dear lord…I don’t know what to think.
Most are using the octopus, but Sam changes her mind after the judges talk to her and decides to make a chocolate fondant, whilst Emily is making a Malaysian egg yolk sponge cake. Well making a fondant was a bad decision for Sam as it wasn’t cooked enough and didn’t stand up on the plate…oh well it’s not like there’s an elimination on the line after this challenge.
First to be tasted is Kira’s dish…vino cotto poached pear with chocolate ganache…and naturally we go to an ad break just as Maggie tries to cut the pear with a spoon to see how well it is cooked…and no it’s hard to spoon out, but it is tender in the mouth.
Next is Sarah with pan-seared octopus with parsley farfalle…unfortunately the octopus isn’t tender but the rest is good.
Next is Emily, whose jaw drops and is in complete shock as she walks her dish up…Malaysian egg yolk sponge cake with umeboshi flavoured cream…Matt says it doesn’t look the best and hopes the taste makes up for it. George enjoys the dish and Maggie loves the balance between the umeboshi, verjuice and vino cotto.
Next up is Scott with his chocolate ganache tart with pear and vino cotto. Matt adores it and is heaven.
Last chosen is Rachael with her grilled octopus on seared pears…and she knows as soon as she sees Maggie cutting it that the octopus isn’t tender enough.
They don’t even deliberate, but instantly say the winner is Scott. He walks into the pantry with George and Gary and Frank Camorra from Movida is standing in there with the 3 core ingredients. The choices are: fresh chorizo, rabbit and citrus fruits (with lemons, oranges and pomelos) and he chooses chorizo.
Actually I think I would be more excited about Frank Camorra than I would be about Maggie Beer…and yes I did just say that out loud.
The bottom 3 dishes go to tomorrow’s pressure test and the top 3 get to go into the immunity challenge…the first for the year.
Oh dear…Renae’s cut her finger and feels like she’s going to pass out…so she’s literally sitting down on the floor in the middle of the cooking time…well with less than 10 minutes to go. Matt reminds her to put something on the plate otherwise she’s straight through to elimination and she puts some gluggy potatoes on the plate with some lamb she cut one handed.
The judges love the first dish…Amy’s potato bravas (or however it is spelled). Up next is Renae with her potatoes, squid and lamb and Matt’s not sure why the lamb is there but he redeems himself by asking her if she is okay and asks her what made her get back up and continue cooking.
Then is Jamie with his chorizo succotash with lightly seared squid…Frank is asked what flowers he used and he says chilli flowers, tomato flowers and parsley flowers and Matt says that the seeds of the tomato flowers are poisonous…and we go to an ad break…oh silly boy choosing flowers from the garden to pretty up his dish.
On a side note…why can’t Masterchef end in time for A Place to Call Home to start???
Back to Jamie…they move the flowers and taste the dish…and let’s say Frank and Matt weren’t overly happy with it.
Up goes Laura with her chorizo and squid paella and Matt says her squid is delicious and Frank thinks that to cook so good at 18 is amazing.
They love Tash’s dish, and enjoy Scott’s dish. As for Sean’s dish, there’s part of the squid that is raw…well that’s never a good sight. Then is Baker Boy Nick with chorizo and feta stuffed squid and he’s got a lot of raw squid and gooey stuff that should have been pulled out of the squid. I’m predicting right now that the bottom three will be Jamie, Sean and Nick, unless someone else makes a major disaster of a dish. Thankfully Tracy takes up a very impressive dish. Then there is more raw calamari with Sarah’s dish and then they say she shouldn’t have put the pumpkin on there as it is burnt black…there may be a new contender for bottom three after that.
Time for the top and bottom three…Tracy has a good dish, as does Amy and Laura…and they’re through to the immunity challenge.
Now for the bottom three…Nick, Sean and Sarah…hell Jamie is very very lucky if you ask me. They have to cook tomorrow in “one of the most complex dishes they’ve ever seen” ohhhhh this should be fun.