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Masterchef Australia – Ten More Of The Top 24 Revealed

Who knew cutting and filleting salmon could be full of such suspense? Tonight ten people were going to go through to the top 24 so it was a huge challenge, for this they needed a big kahuna chef so they brought in the delectable Matt Moran.

First up was the mise en place challenge and it was four challenges to get to the holy grail of a spot in the 24. At first I thought it was going to be chopping celery, carrot and onion. However it was a bit more challenging then that.

First up was separating eggs. Greg the media sales guy hands were shaking and some familiar faces were tapped early to stand aside these included Jake, Dominic, Joanne Zalm, and Skye.

I thought the tapping out was abit arbitary as the amount of shell in some bowls were not just in there from the last egg they cracked.

Then next challenge was carrot julienne, and more were eliminated. Marion was a bit of a star in that one. Some contestants must have thought they were chopping crudites as there were some fat sticks.

Then it was the oyster shucking competition. I thought this was going to be ugly and I was expecting blood. But disappointingly there wasn’t. But then again Jake had already been eliminated.

Sharnee who is getting a lot of TV loving since the show started, had the advantage in the oyster shucking as her grandfather was an oyster farmer, no surprise she finished first.

Adele shucked but then kind of forgot to put her hand up, but it got her through to the next bench.

Finally there was the stress text where the first four people to deliver six perfect portions of 180gms pieces of salmon got through to the top 24.

It was no surprise Marion got through she has got a lot of loving. I wish she would say where she got her fabulous necklace from. Daniel the unemployed guy with the all shook up tatt around his neck was through as well. But Daniel we have hardly seen you.

Aaron who reminds me of Adam Garcia from American Idol was doing ok, but then he put a scrawny piece of salmon onto the scales and it was back to the end of the line for him.

Adele (can someone give her a xanax) and Courtney were the other two to get through.

All the remaining contestants were back in the next challenge, and this was to keep up with Matt Moran cooking one of his signature dishes and -boned out quail served with gnocchi and pumpkin – again there were four stages in the challenge.

The first bit was to blanch the pumpkin – Jake the renderer,and Dominic went at that stage. I will be very surprised if either of them make it into the top 24.

The next was to make the gnocchi they were given 16 minutes to do this.

Next was to debone a quail in six minutes. Richard Gunner a former butcher made easy work of his.

Next was the cooking and plating. At this stage people were eliminated even before the tasting. I thought this was a tad unfair, but then maybe professional chefs can tell just by the visuals that a dish is going to taste crap.

The six put through were Phillip, Kate, Johnathan, Peter, Aaron, and Adam. No real surprises there, as a lot of them have been getting a fair bit of viewing time.


1 KC { 04.22.10 at 11:53 pm }

I feel so lame but I started tearing up when Aaron got through because I’m supporting him (and MARION WOOHOO YOU GO MARION!!!) but I was also so scared he’d get out cause of his bone in quail thing. Matt Moran SHOOK HIS HEAD! That’s serious stuff…Its not the first time Masterchef has let a chef off for having something in the food that shouldn’t be there (was it Sam last year with a pip) and if its such a big thing to not do, why are chef’s still let through? I’m going for Aaron but his gnocchi must have been awesome (he did say pasta was his strength though) for him to get through…

GOOOOOOOOOOO MARION!!!!!!!!!! Sorry I think she’s really awesome even though this is entirely based on her cuts on Masterchef. But she is such a good cook…

And about the visuals thing…I think for some of the dishes you could probably tell since some of them looked sauce-less from some of the shots from the camera. But I am no cook at all so I can’t really judge. I did think it was slightly unfair but considering they had to cook at Matt Moran’s standard with more time, they probably had to have theirs look as yummy as his.

2 Laura { 04.23.10 at 2:26 am }

Oh I was really scared for them this episode! Definitely at the edge of my seat!

I hope they make it fair so that people who were constantly in the top in top 50 week are favoured in some way for the last 12 spots. They should be rewarded for being consistently good, even though they weren’t the absolute best. Skye, for example. And Alvin (my favourite!)

Honestly I think that the ‘skills’ challenge (with the weighing and the chopping and the eggs) was a bit easy. I mean, I’m sure that it’s hard but I don’t know if it was an accurate representation of who were the best cooks in the competition because they didn’t actually make food. I think that the top 6 of the signature dish challenge should have gotten through automatically, and then the top 4 of the cutting challenge had to make the beef wellington to secure their spots.

I think that Philip’s partner abandoning him was the best thing that could have happened to him!

3 CG { 04.23.10 at 5:33 am }

Marion is my favourite at this point. Clare the lawyer chick always looking on from the sidelines like she is Queen Bee is pissing me off. Agree the awarding of some of these top spots had nothing to do with cooking. Some top 24 spots are being awarded on hard cooking challenges, others on much less and risk is there will be a very unbalanced group in the top 24.

They also have to stop with the drama. Each episode has had a teary breakdown, tonight being Philips’ turn with his story about his granny that was so rehearsed and forced, he seemed very uncomfortable being asked to talk about it.

I’m enjoying the show on the whole, much better than MKR but it is coming across a little disjointed to me, a bit random. I guess we just need to get to the top 24 and then get into more of rythm. Another thing bugging me is Matt Preston. I think his “fame” has gone to his head. There is too much “rock star” when he appears and he is going over the top (not in a good way) with his facial expressions and comments, even his wardrobe seems more contrived than last year.

Overall, they are running the risk of losing the “genuineness” of Series 1 and making it more produced and contrived. IMHO. Lets get back to the cooking and less drama and less “production”.

4 dmc { 04.23.10 at 8:06 am }

CG. Couldn’t agree more, though I do like some of the challenges. The music and editing are so obvious that you know who’s getting through before it happens, which drains the suspense for me. We don’t have to have a mini drama at every ad break.

5 Wurstsemmel { 04.23.10 at 10:08 am }

Well said, CG. This show is seeming so contrived and overproduced, it’s taking the edge off for me. I like some of the new challenges but I’m over the need for some kind of psychological trauma with each episode.

Agree with CG re. Claire. Smugness personified. Hope it all comes undone and it’s not the ‘done deal’ she acts like it is.

All that aside, definitely beats the pants off MKR, even without Manu.

I’m afraid, having loved Matt last season, he’s fast becoming ‘Matt the Twat’ this season. George is same old, same old…thumping the air and calling all the good looking gals ‘darling’. Yeuch. I’d have liked to see a new arrangement of judges.

6 TDK { 04.23.10 at 10:18 am }

Agree with you guys about the drama and tears.
Over editing.
So fake.
We the viewer (speaking for myself) wants to see a cooking competition, not sob stories!!
If I want to see a sob stories I’d see a movie or drama series!!
Phillip!! Reminds me of that perfect Italian ad, “Everytime I cook, I weep..”. For crying out loud there are far worse situations to cry about. You are a girl!! No, you are a baby!!
George C. – “Tell me more about it..” – yeah George milk him for every tears you can.
I thought the challenges were a new and refreshing idea, but do we have to go through so much drama just to get these people into the top 24?
They can’t even safely crack eggs, can’t evenly slice carrots, is this all the cooking talents Australia can offer? It’s crap!!

7 lydal { 04.23.10 at 10:57 am }

“They can’t even safely crack eggs, can’t evenly slice carrots, is this all the cooking talents Australia can offer? It’s crap!!” LOL though probably things that are easy at home aren’t so easy under pressure. The guy who was trying two make a pile of two profiterols the other day was shaking badly his hands and he was a pilot (if I remember right). Sure the pressure has to be a lot there.
Agree with music and tears. Since first day music it’s really annoying and revealing everything before it happens. And stop with tearing,please! george seems to have the role of the one who has to make them cry (as most of the hosts of reality tv).
Still think they need a female judge/critic. Didn’t like Matt P. last year, neither this year.
All these things apart… obviously it isn’t the “perfect” cooking reality show but it’s the best we have imo. Very entertaining and love to see new recipes and learn about cooking.

8 corrie { 04.23.10 at 12:41 pm }

oh I had to come in and write about Phillip! While it was sweet to hear about his grandma … on earth did that story and tears come out of the blue! one minute we’re looking at his food next minute we’re talking about his granmda…….oh dear!!!!!!!!!

it was a great episode and I did love the suspense at the weigh in of the salmon pieces!

corrie: )

9 Fides { 04.23.10 at 1:22 pm }

Have enjoyed the variety of the challenges the top 50 face this year. Much more interesting than last year, but agree the music is overdone and really annoying. If any of the producers/editors are taking note, hope they will consider changes to future episodes. And Matt is becoming a caricature, though I suppose I always felt he was one.

I think George has his favourite by the way he was gazing adoringly at Phillip like he’s his little brother or something. The whole grandma/uncle thing – there are issues there but I don’t think Australia needs to know about them.

I’m glad Adele made it to top 24 – she’s great TV. I’m sure she can cook well (her signature dish must have been something special), but it’s that face I love which I want to see more on my TV. Perpetually terrified and I liked the talking to herself when Gary and George were weighing her salmon fillets. Really I hope she does well and can overcome those nerves because I’m sure she’ll have a lot to offer besides those expressions. She’s an even more freaked out and emotional Julie, so she’ll probably win…

All these contestants seem to have bonded well, haven’t they? There seems to be genuine excitement for other contestants when they succeed.

10 TDK { 04.23.10 at 1:28 pm }

I am sure many of the other contestants are pissed off or probably thinking “Phillip only got through because he wept”, it’s not about his food.

11 Reality Raver { 04.23.10 at 1:44 pm }

KC – I a loving Marion as well, an early favourite, but they are giving her some positive TV loving.

CG – Agree about the Matt Preston rock star thing is irritating. How he has to do the saunter through the whole room to applause by the contestants to get to George and Gary.

I do like the chemistry b/w those two.

Laura – if andrea had not have left he would be going home now. In fact that pairs challenge in hindsight was a bit unfair as it all depended on what partners you got.

Wurstsemmel – I am loving the challenges it is something completely different each day. It also makes you realise how redundant Sarah Wilson was last year I have not even noticed she is not there.

TDK – LOL – you appear a bit scathing about their cooking ability – that thought crossed my mind, but I thought maybe attention to detail is one aspect of being a good cook.

Lydal – they do need a female judge or have alot of female guest judges.

Corrie – I am ambivalent about Phil. The weighing of the salmon was a cracker, imagine the poor buggers waiting in line hoping the person in front has fucked up.

Fides – I actually think Adele can cook, the pavlova was the best one until she overloaded it. And her signature dish was innovative and looked really interesting and yummy. She is so freaking nervous and that is annoying me, but if she can keep them under control she could go far. I don’t think she will win. My bet it will be a Gen Y.

12 Anonymous { 04.23.10 at 2:25 pm }

Aw, I always have different opinions to the majority here re: Masterchef! Case in point – I loooove Matt Preston, he’s the only reason why I tuned in this season after the celebration of pure mediocrity last season and I’m just not getting the I’m a rockstar vibes from him at all. AND my early favourite is Claire! Oh dear. Not another season of loneliness! :(

13 TDK { 04.23.10 at 2:26 pm }

Anonymous – is that why you don’t enter a screen-name? LOL

14 CG { 04.23.10 at 2:37 pm }

RR: agree that winner this year will have to be the “anti-Julie”. Most obvious choice would be a guy (esp given MC’s penchant for boy v. girl challenges!). But girl/guy it most certainly will be a Gen-Y-er to expand the demographic, esp considering Julie is already writing her second cookbook. With this in mind I don’t think Clare will win the thing and in fact she is probably being set up for a big fall early in the round of 24.

BTW where is the MC2 series in terms of filming? Are they done / almost done? Asking because I’m assuming they are pretty far into things and it is too late for the producers to take any of our “advice” on board!

15 Reality Raver { 04.23.10 at 2:40 pm }

Anonymous – we love difference of opinion on this blog it makes it so much more entertaining.

CG- Not sure where it is all up to but well into top 24. To be honest not sure they even read this blog.

16 Reality Raver { 04.23.10 at 2:41 pm }

CG – However, Matt Lee has now unblocked me from his twitter account now that I have said more positive things about his judging. So who knows who reads it.

17 CG { 04.23.10 at 3:01 pm }

RR: I think Fremantle would be reading all media about their shows. Many of the changes made in MC2 were things many on your blog moaned about a lot last year: ie second/third chances for the Im-Poh-ster, contestants voting each other out, disappearing contestants after beating the chef (Julia), etc. Although one item they didnt’ pick up on was the need for a female judge!

18 kate { 04.23.10 at 3:55 pm }

I agree that Matt’s appearances are a bit overdone, but I still love him!

The tears and family dramas are getting pretty tedious though. It would be nice for the judges to try and do a bit to reduce the pressure level a bit rather than increase it just to milk the drama for the cameras – one of MC’s strengths last year was that the judges seemed to care a bit about the contestants. This time around the high fives, family dramas (maybe they were trying to present Gary as bonding with the males to counterbalance the ogling) and sharklike prowling seems entirely forced.

Still, I really do think the challenges are a bit better designed this time around. Testing out basic, essential (but not as simple as it looks) chef skills early on was a good idea (I still cringe at the memory of Chris last year wrecking oddles of lovely oysters while out working on placement in a restaurant until the chef told him to stop as he couldn’t afford the wastage….).

And I really loved the staged approach to Matt Moran’s dish, helpful for us at home who might be tempted to try it!

19 Injera { 04.23.10 at 4:48 pm }

Tears, meltdowns, drama, revelations of family tragedies… and we’re not even in the top 24 yet! All credit must go to the other contestants who valiantly resist the temptation to roll their eyes as back-story after back-story emerges. (I wasn’t as controlled and felt quite queasy as a result.)

Agree that the disqualifications on the basis of eggshells seemed arbitrary, i.e. if a bowl was picked up and there were shells… out!… which left me thinking that perhaps some had snuck through because of timing of bowl checks. That might not have been the case, but the edit was definitely ambiguous.

I did think that knocking contestants out on presentation was a bit iffy in light of Aaron getting through with a bone in his dish. Surely he shouldn’t have gone beyond the boning-the-quail stage, given that, well, he didn’t succeed in that task. Okay, I’m biassed, I just want to see my Tweep @Richard_Gunner do well – I’m sure there wouldn’t have been bones in his bird!

20 saffronlie { 04.23.10 at 7:17 pm }

I loved the challenges in this episode but couldn’t help cringing at all the wasted eggs in the mise-en-place challenge. Carrots, oysters and salmon could at least (theoretically) be easily stored and cooked, but giant bowlfuls of egg whites and yolks? I doubt anyone behind the scenes is going to use it all in meringue and custard. I realise every episode probably produces a lot of food that goes to waste, but it really got to me this time.

21 Injera { 04.23.10 at 8:34 pm }

You’re right about the waste, saffronlie. It would have been so much more sensible to do the pav challenge after the skills challenge, for SO many reasons…

22 akris { 04.23.10 at 8:35 pm }

I am loving Marion as well.. if it was a voting competition (and i’m glad it’s not) she would probably be crowd favourite.. i liked it when she said “i think i squealed and I never squeal” haha.. very likeable.. some confidence but not too overly like how it looks with Claire. I also like the renderer guy, but unfortunately I don’t think he’s going to get through either..

I do feel though with 10 people coming through tonight that if i was in the top 3 of the best signature dish challenge and i don’t make it top 24 i’d feel a bit cheated. I don’t know.. it just seems a lot easier tonight than the other night… Surely being voted on by the rest of the contestants as having a great dish is good enough???? Maybe i’m alone on this but I just thought they dragged out that signature dish thing and to only let 2 people through was a bit unfair compared to the 10 tonight. (even if it was a lot of pressure!)

Oh.. i also like Aaron. :)

23 seepi { 04.23.10 at 10:36 pm }

I still miss Irmgard.
I can’t watch Adele – i feel myself tensing up as she tenses up.
And if Irmgard was still there surely they wouldn’t still go on about ‘girls vs boys’

24 Zibb { 04.23.10 at 10:50 pm }

I have to say I disagree about Clair, I think she isn’t choosing to sit and watch all the challanges, and it’s not really her fault that she cooked well in the early stages and got through. I think it’s nice that she and Adele often seem to be sitting together, and (I think) she is the one that Adele ran to hug when she got in. I like that the top 50 seem to be becoming friends.

25 Injera { 04.23.10 at 10:53 pm }

Agree, Zibb – I’m impressed with Claire. She’s what all the contestants should be: a skilled cook!

26 Reality Raver { 04.23.10 at 11:13 pm }

I am reserving judgement on Claire – she appear nice, and in fact I would like to see a bit more emotion from her. Now I don’t me crying but for her to be a bit more animated.

Loving Marion. Will be really gutted if Alvin does not get through. He is one of my faves. Also want Richard Gunner through as well.

27 akris { 04.24.10 at 12:11 am }

I agree.. they must be a skilled cook.. but I think Reality Raver said about her showing emotion is kind of what makes her not as endearing (?) as the others.. who do show a lot more emotion. I don’t not like her or totally think she’s needed in the competition… but just a little bit emotion would be good… i guess we’ll see in the top 24 when she actually does get put under pressure.

28 KC { 04.24.10 at 1:57 am }

I like Clare though…I like how she doesn’t get so overly emotional and she looks calm-headed and focused. Its calming watching someone like that cook. Although Marion is still my FAVE cause she’s AWESOME! And Aaron cause he has said some pretty funny stuff on the show so far and he doesn’t seem TOO up himself 😀 The only one that I’m not feeling for that much at the moment is Adele only because like some other people said, she stresses me out because she is so stressed out all the time. But I’m sure that since the Top 50 seem to be pretty tight, she’ll be able to relax more 😀

29 Anonymous { 04.24.10 at 12:09 pm }

TDK – 😀 Partly! And partly because I can never remember what name/email address I was using here.

RR – Oh, I know, I wasn’t complaining. It was just a lonely Masterchef ride last year, lol. But look, more Claire fans! Yay.

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