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MasterChef Australia – Beat the Chef Chris v Alex Herbert

Now Chris is a dude, and a cool one at that. In previous challenges he has drunk the beer out of the mystery box, and taken cheese from the pantry to eat whilst cooking. But what else would you expect from someone who is a beer merchant? He is getting some great publicity for his business Beer Masons whilst he is on the show, which he has got to be happy with. Hopefully it is translating into increased sales.

After winning the challenge on Sunday with a Steak Tartare it was his turn to play Beat The Chef.

Last week Julia won by beating Pete Evans. But what did she win? Sure she gets to go straight to the final week of competition but now she is unpaid labor in Pete Evans restaurant. She is missing out on all the fun of the challenges.  Also I think she will struggle once she is in the final week, all the other contestants will be acclimatised to the camera’s and cooking to a strict time frame, whereas she will have to get used to that all over again.

The other advantage for the ones who did not go straight to the final is they will know what type of food the judges like, and will have better personal relationships with them as they have seen them week in and out.

The other thing that could go against Julia in the finals is the fact that one of the prizes is to publish a cookbook. Since the viewer will have hardly gotten to know her and seen her cooking style they will be less inclined to buy the book.

Personally I don’t think beating the chef is something you really want to do.  Anyway Chris doesn’t have to worry about winning tonight because there is no way the producers are going to want this to happen two weeks in a row.

Tonight’s chef is Alex Herbert who is the owner/chef of  Bird Cow Fish was the one to beat. They were to cook her signature dish of Gnocchi with Sauted Prawns, and Burnt Sage. You could tell she had been mentored by Maggie Beer as there was verjuice in the dish. Anyone who has a Maggie Beer cookbook, and I have two, can tell you 70 per cent of her recipes have verjuice in them. Now who is the only producer of verjuice in Australia – yes you guessed it Maggie Beer.

Chris had 1 hour and 45 minutes to complete the dish, and Alex had 30 minutes less. He had only made gnocchi once before and he said it had turned into potato soup. He did a great job, and at one stage it looked like Alex was going to choke and she just managed to complete the dish.

Tonight it is a blind tasting, something that should occur on the Monday night elimination show. Can June Dally-Watkins please teach George Colombaris how to eat, I find the way he uses his utensils offputting.

The judges unanimously preferred Alex’s dish much to her and the producer’s relief and she won comprehensively.

Tomorrow night it appears the contestants will be making dagwood dogs at the Royal Easter Show.


1 Injera { 05.26.09 at 11:14 pm }

Tonight, Sarah Wilson stood mute for the entire opening. Surely she should have been introducing the chef and talking up the challenge instead of having the judges do it. As well as that, the neatly scripted narrations during the cook-off could have been handled by her. Am I really meant to believe that Trevor’s thoughts on the perfect gnocchi were impromptu? If all that contestant-narration was cut, the show might be an entertaining half hour. It was refreshing to have a break from Sam and Kate, though.

Good to see that Julia’s getting some experience, even if it is as a kitchen slave!

Love the verjuice pickup – I almost felt as though I was watching The Cook and the Chef.

2 Reality Raver { 05.26.09 at 11:18 pm }

I’d love to know if Sarah finds her role as frustrating as we do. But maybe when they were filming she was saying a lot more and it was edited out.

Yes I agree 30 minutes could have made it a nice tight episode. Who cares that Geni was feeling anxious about Alex nearly not finishing her dish.

3 Dolph Ziggler { 05.27.09 at 4:23 pm }

Hopefully while they are frying the Dagwood Dogs they can also reveal the secret to making the perfect Chicko Roll.