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Masterchef – Masterclass

Masterclass is the reason they’re all here, according to Sam. So, it’s not about the $100K or the book deal. (I have read that applicants didn’t know what the prizes were, right up until it almost went to air, but the precedent for Australian reality shows is that there’ll be a hefty prize. I wonder how many would’ve stayed if the prize had just been the title and a perspex trophy.)

It’s the day after elimination and Kate’s still crying. She explains the shock of Josh’s departure. Apparently nobody expected it (except that Justine did mention that he’s be a target when the Blues were speculating over lunch. Of course, given the edit Justine’s been getting, perhaps she’s the “nobody” Kate’s referring to.) Kate keeps saying “we” when, really, this is all about her.

We’re revisiting squid and we’re reminded that Sam and Kate cooked one for the first time in the Pressure Test. We’re also reminded that Kate didn’t cook it, as such, but the fact that she still managed to avoid elimination over this is omitted from the recap. Sam is called up to the front to learn how to clean a squid properly. I think he should be learning how to pit olives.

The squid is finished, and Justine makes the most of some rare screen time and has a second forkful of the quickly fried calamari. Good decision. It’s cooked by Gary and, anyway, who knows when she’ll get another chance in front of the camera.

George is now doing cauliflower three ways, which – to my palate – sounds like three ways too many. Cauli cream, shaved cauli with olive oil and sea salt and cauli powder. Lucas assesses the cauli cream as being “about as good as it gets” and I hope that by “it” he means “cauliflower” rather than something broader, like “life”.

“We love butter”. Yes. Oh, yes we do!

George’s dish has a cauliflower cream base, the shaved cauliflower, the calamari, some dehydraded ouzo powder (which is olives infused with ouzo, then dried), the cauliflower powder and a passionfruit vinaigrette. As Matt Preston said after Linda presented her rabbit, making savoury dishes look like dessert is “so hot right now” in Europe. The dish looks very elegant, but I’m sure I’d experience some cognitive dissonance eating a dish that looked like my mum’s passionfruit cream but tasted of calamari and cauliflower.

Frank Shek from China Doll in Sydney appears to help them “revisit the Chinese Challenge”. Kate’s getting her personal tuition time. Frank has a totally unexpected accent, which has a northern (UK) lilt (in fact, he talks about his grandmother in Scotland. Bless). Thanks to the commenter who drew my attention to the adjective “sulky” for Kate. It’s one that’s gone missing from my vocabulary, so I’m glad to have it back. It suits her, and Sam, perfectly. In fact, Kate and Sam look like a pair of teenagers who have determined that they are NOT going to ENJOY themselves today, DAMMIT, no matter WHAT you do to try and jolly us up!

Things I love:

  • I love how Frank has to demonstrate “cut” for Kate.
  • I love how Aaron’s wearing glasses today.
  • I love how Kate’s “one more” splash of sesame oil is really two more.
  • I love how, even after her personal lesson in Chinese cooking, Kate is still pouting.
  • I love that Justine is getting some love from the cameras, finally. She acknowledges that it’s her lucky day. She also has a second crack when she’s invited to try the soufflé.
  • I love learning that it doesn’t matter if I open my oven door when making a soufflé. When I next have a flop, I’ll blame Gary.
  • I love that Lucas goes straight for the wine.

Things I hate

  • I hate that the worst get private tuition, but the best and the middle-range don’t – seems yet another strange quirk in this quest to find Australia’s best amateur chef.
  • I hate how, even after her personal lesson in Chinese cooking, Kate is still pouting, until she gets the attention she’s after. Then it’s a smile.
  • I hate the shoulda coulda mystery box segment of Masterclass. Seriously, guys, you’ve had a few days and years of training and experience to decide what you’d do. This mob had to design and deliver in a limited time, having just seen these ingredients.
  • I hate that George says “it’s been a really good Masterclass, yeah?”. Talk about fishing for compliments!


1 Ed { 05.23.09 at 12:58 am }

Spot on yet again.

2 Jess { 05.23.09 at 3:48 pm }

Honestly think you’re being overly harsh on Kate. Obviously she would be upset if her friend was gone unfairly because a bunch of old people got insecure about a friendship. I actually like the fact she’s not fake and shows her emotions and ditto for Sam. Infact, I think Chris, Poh, Andre and the rest of that little posse are snakes in the grass.

3 Injera { 05.23.09 at 7:59 pm }

Jess, I’m probably looking at it from a different perspective. It’s been a while since three weeks = BFF for me, so her reaction to her “friend” being booted (which is, after all, part of the show they’ve all signed up for) seemed OTT to me. I know, I know, she’s young, BUT she’s at Uni, not in year nine. As for “unfairly”, Josh has screwed up in the past and was one of the many not shown in the last mystery box challenge. I’m sure there are things we’re not seeing that are being noticed by all competitors. This is not to say that I, in ANY way, like the participant elimination. I hate it. Think it degrades the show.

I haven’t been able to assess Chris and Andre’s characters, based on the tiny amount of camera time they’ve been given so far. Maybe that will change and I’ll have a chance to slag off the others, too!

4 CG { 05.24.09 at 4:02 am }

LOL. I loved how Lucas went straight for the wine as well! Still hating on Kate and her attitude, and hating on Gary and George for falling for her pathetic, juvenile ‘charms’. I hope she goes in the next couple of eliminations. Did you see her chopping/cutting…my 8-year old niece can do a better job. This is not Master Dessert Maker…

5 Dee { 05.27.09 at 8:21 pm }

i can’t even stand her voice. it’s horribly grating.