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Masterchef – Masterclass, or George and Gary go to the Easter Show)

“Tonight, it’s a change of pace,” the narrator intones.  He’s not exactly misrepresenting the Masterclass – it is a change of pace, insofar as slooooooow can be described as “pace”.

Aaron gets the first VO and says nothing of note. George hasn’t got the clueless-judge memo – unlike Gary, he states upfront that Kate’s missing. Sam is spokesperson for Kate and eulogises her appropriately. George seems to have replaced saying “yeah” at the end of sentences with “so” at the beginning.

First, Gary and George are making a snapper “en papillote”. Aaron puts his hand up for the filleting lesson. Maybe the reason he did so badly in the challenge was that he wasn’t wearing glasses. As a full-time glasses-wearer, I am always pissed off with people who selectively wear glasses. Perhaps I’m just envious of their contacts-wearing ability. Aaron returns to the contestants and jumps onto his stool – he nearly misses. I am falling in love with him. Maybe not to the erotic dreams level, but …

As Gordon Ramsay would say “Fuck me – chunky chips”. Anybody who has watched any British TV food show has seen more Chunky Chips in the past couple of years than they need to, yet George tries to sell them as special. In fact, he says “best chips in the world” as though that cute little Brookside starlet Jennifer Ellison hadn’t mastered them on the UK Hell’s Kitchen in 2004.

Eeek – when Andre tastes the fish, he lets some fall off the fork, back onto the fish. I feel sorry for the person who has to taste next. Sandra comes up for a chip and has a good old flirt with Georgy boy.

Risotto time!  And George is making up for the narrator’s slack pronunciation by going completely La Traviata on this.  Some tips: Never buy your rice cryovac-ed. Don’t stir a risotto, agitate it. Never get involved in a land war in Asia.  Okay, only two of these are pieces of advice from tonight’s show.  I’ll let you guess which ones.  George demonstrates “agitate” and that is SO not how I make my risotto. Will try on Sunday. (Wow – Masterchef is giving me something I can use!) Gary’s making “baby food” to stir into the risotto. The risotto is done and it’s time for tasting: Sandra’s voice says “beautiful”; her face says “meh”.

Gary would’ve done hotcakes with caramelised apples at the show. He doesn’t mention the fact that the Blue team offered no sweet at all. He adds some eggs to his batter for that “luxury” feel. He doesn’t acknowledge that eggs weren’t available to the contestants at the show. I notice that the contestants are all taking notes… except Sam. He’s probably confident of being able to live on the profits of Mrs Sam’s wedding dress sale. Trev looks extremely bored. Tom and Justine look enraptured. Poh tastes the hotcakes and George has the temerity to criticise the size and elegance of the mouthful she takes. George – review the tapes!

Poh reminds us in an interview that they’ve been “doing work experience every week” as though we really should have known that before today, if we’d been paying attention. Seriously, is this the first time we’ve heard about it? The lack of pro experience has been one of my problems with this version of Masterchef – you’d think they’d know better than to hide that light under the bushel of ridiculous weeping.

Revisiting the mystery box. Gary and George are going to demonstrate cooking a steak (these are *cough*allegedly*cough* Australia’s best amateur chefs, but they need to be taught how to cook a steak?) and a red wine sauce. These poor contestants – some weeks they have to “think outside the [mystery] box” and other weeks they’re slammed for not just “respecting the ingredients” and doing a straight-up steak. Who’s to know?

God – George and his bloody underwear fetish! Who’d wear VELVET knickers? Is George a 30 year old virgin? (And, on that, I just googled to find George’s age and had to extrapolate – 27 in 2006 = 30 in 2009. How does Matt Preston have a Wikipedia page and George doesn’t? Please, have a look at Matt’s page. It reads as though it was written by someone channelling Mr Micawber.  Thanks to Ed for tipping me off to this.)

Anyway, the steak rests, Sam tastes and is suitably humble about how it compares to his, and everybody is happy (apart from Trevor, who continues to look bored).

Next week! John Torode, from the REAL Masterchef, will try to overcome his shock that such a bunch of rank losers have made it to a final of a show bearing the MC brand.

  • Did anybody else notice that the narrator’s plummy tones falter when it came to saying “rasoddo”?
  • Lucas either asks lots of questions or he’s the only contestant who asks questions that are intelligent enough to make it through to final edit.
  • Anything that grows below the ground goes into cold water. Anything that grows above the ground goes into boiling water. I knew this implicitly, but what a catchy rule!
  • Justine is gorgeous. I’m more likely to have sexy dreams about her than about Aaron. She distracted me from George’s rhapsody on peanut oil.
  • Is this the first time we’re hearing about the weekly work experience the chefs get? This should be a bigger part of the show than a little bit of interim filler in the Masterclass. We hear that Sandra and Julie would be great chefs, but we don’t see it. Show, don’t tell, Ten!


1 CG { 05.29.09 at 11:49 pm }

Some musings:

— how come every time the camera cuts to Trevor he is chewing his cud?

— i wonder how many viewers tune in on Fridays vs. Sun, Mon, Wed and Thurs nights – would give an indication of how many are watching for the cooking and how many are watching for the reality show drama?

— does anyone else miss the broadcast and watch epi’s on if so, do you think the girl at the start of the episode replay (the one with the flags) looks scarily like Poh? I smell a producer obsession with cheeky Asian girls?


2 Reality Raver { 05.30.09 at 12:53 am }

I just want to say I have had a few drinks and this post has just completely cracked me up. But indulge me if my comments are not completely related to the episode.

Seriously Injera you and I must cross paths all over the internet. I was thinking that exactly same thing re: Wiki and the fact George and Gary do not have their own wiki pages but Matt Preston does. I can neither confirm nor deny whether I was on wiki to try and find out if Gary was married. This was for a blog post of course…..

I have only seen one masterclass but what they are showing them is pretty basic, but I think it is meant to be for the TV viewing public. I mean seriously hotcakes is not tricky.

Aaron I think has wit, which is unusual for a 21 year old. This guy could be quality by the time he is 28.

Do you think the work experience is the restaurants they go to after they win the Wednesday night challenge? The Leichhardt work experience looked pretty basic. Just watching the head chef making a dish then going off to have lunch together.

CG – I agree I think Poh is about to get some major air time.

PS. Injera thanks for the recap.

3 Injera { 05.30.09 at 11:26 am }

Ha! CG, Trevor did look bovine throughout that masterclass. Wonder if Tom chose the beef last week just to try to freak him out…

I’m going to dinner at a certain Greek restaurant on Wednesday and will be taking my trusty camera phone – will send a pic if I spy Aaron as rumours suggest I might!

4 AP { 05.30.09 at 12:16 pm }

CG. I believe TEN were very clever putting together a weekly Recap episode to air on Friday evenings. Good family viewing kinda stuff before the footy is aired.

Ratings from MediaSpy

4 Masterchef Australia Ten 1,219,000 375,000 389,000 204,000 111,000 139,000
Thurs 28th May

6 Masterchef Australia Ten 1,338,000 415,000 398,000 212,000 147,000 167,000
Wed 27th May

8 Masterchef Australia Ten 1,276,000 453,000 375,000 167,000 121,000 160,000
Tues 26th May

3 Masterchef Australia Ten 1,443,000 445,000 437,000 232,000 151,000 177,000
Mon 25th May

2 Masterchef Australia – Challenge Ten 1,671,000 471,000 499,000 294,000 178,000 230,000
Sun 24th May

6 Masterchef Australia Ten 1,083,000 374,000 304,000 155,000 104,000 146,000
Friday 22nd May

5 CG { 05.30.09 at 6:48 pm }

AP, so ratings do fall on Friday, which I assume they do for all network programs because people go out on Fridays. Agree, smart strategy for 10 to keep good ratings, appease core MC fan base and as lead in to footy.

RR, on the work-experience restaurants, the one they showed Poh and Julie at was Dank Street Depot in Waterloo (Sydney). I don’t think this restaurant has ever been featured in the show otherwise. But is is nearby where they are filming. What I find strange is that they did not mention the work experience before? Were all contestants getting work exp from the start or just recently after several eliminations? Revealing all the remaining contestants are getting work experience removes the benefit we thought chef-challenge winner Julia was getting while she waits for the finale although arguably she will have more time in work experience.

On Aaron, I have to disagree. I see no signs of wit, intelligence or hope and don’t think he will be interesting even when he is 68.


6 Injera { 05.30.09 at 7:10 pm }

CG, I really want to find out more about what the “work experience” segment entails. Are they doing a service a week? Are they doing several services a week? Are they doing services at a variety of restaurants? Are they all getting similar levels of experience (i.e. similarly ranked restaurants, all breakfast or all lunch/all dinner). I assume Julia, having given up her job, is working fairly steadily at Pete’s place in Melbourne, which would be an advantage over the contestants who are fitting in a smidge of experience around their filming/challenge commitments, but then again, this isn’t exactly clear.

Somebody, make it clear! Clarify!

7 AP { 05.30.09 at 7:33 pm }

Here is the website for The Pantry in Brighton, Melbourne where Julia is working at present. She should gain valuable all round experience working in their restaurant, catering division & deli etc.

8 Reality Raver { 05.30.09 at 10:11 pm }

Here is an article in tv week which outlines what Julia is doing it appears to be very comprehensive. But I still reckon she is missing out on all the fun, especially if there is a trip to Hong Kong involved.

AP – I think with those ratings we will be seeing a season 2 next year. I have to confess I am really enjoying the show.

Injera – Soo jealous about your Wed night excursion, cannot wait to hear all about it.

CG – Your probably right about Aaron I have always had dodgy taste in men.

9 AP { 05.30.09 at 11:11 pm }

RR, yes there will certainly be a Masterchef 2, and according to a report recently in The Daily Telegraph,
Ten’s chief programming officer David Mott advised it will be screened at 7.30 pm. Ch 10 are planning to air a new ‘soap’ 5 nights a week, all year in the 7.00 p.m. slot.

10 CG { 05.31.09 at 12:46 am }

Interesting article written at the start of the season. Says all contestants do work experience very weekend.,21985,25365320-2902,00.html

11 Injera { 05.31.09 at 9:58 am }

RR – that TV Week article was good, but it makes me even more determined not to dine at The Pantry. Pete doesn’t have a decent pastry chef in Melbourne? He has to fly one from Sydney?

CG – Good Hun article. I love George teaching the masses how to eat at restaurants! ”What to expect, what to order, how to eat it, when to arrive …” I hope he isn’t taking it upon himself to teach table manners!

AP – a new soap?!?!? God…