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Masterchef Australia – The Top 12 Campfire Challenge

Before we get to the recap some news has emerged about why Mat Beyer had a mobile phone on him. In the Sunday papers today, Masterchef Australia contestant Danielle Dixon said Mat had the phone because he was waiting on an important phone call.

She said “Mat had a really hard life and there was some news coming that I don’t think he wanted anyone else to know about and, because production filter everything that comes to us communication-wise, that was his way of trying to keep it from everyone – but it backfired in a really bad way.”

She stayed silent on what the bad news was, but insisted Beyer wasn’t cheating and said the show made a mistake by kicking him off.

Interesting Danielle being able to speak to the media, but I will let you join the dots on that one.

Tonight the top 12 were up at Matt Moran’s farm.

George did not look comfortable in his country gear, the flannelette shirt and the bomber vest looked too big on him. I note Gary refused to wear the jackets so managed to remain sartorial.

Was the episode sponsored by RM Williams or Dry As A Bone?

The challenge was to cook the biggest buffet lunch the region had seen. They could cook what they wanted but they had to cook on an open fire. The 200 guests would be voting to determine the winner and the bottom three.

The only protien was lamb, and only carcasses which they would have to butcher themselves. Sun looked like she was going to faint. Interesting Gary Mehigan had done a masterclass on butchering lamb on Friday.

In the tradition of the judges having their relatives on the show, Matt Moran’s dad was a special guest, and he was OK, but I don’t think we will see him taking a masterclass anytime soon.

Matt Moran flicked to Kate to give advice on what country people like to eat.

“Country people like to eat like hearty, warm and filled with flavour. They want to feel comforted and nourished.” said Kate. Peter should have probably listened a tad harder to this advice. Unfortunately we don’t see what Kate’s dish is to see if she took her own advice.

I thought Michael was smart not dealing with the lamb, and just doing dessert. He decided to do rocky road, and toasted marshmallows. However in the four hour prep time what did he actually do?

All the others were prepping the lamb and making a couple of meat dishes, a vegetable dish, and Peter even made bread. Michael melted some chocolate and mixed in some marshmallows, and nuts. Then he must have spent the rest of his prep time putting marshmallows on skewers.

At least he wasn’t stressed out like the rest of them, nor had to carry a lamb down a slippery hillside. I bet half of the female population in Australia swooned when Matt Moran managed to carry a lamb on each shoulder, when everyone else was struggling with one.

Kumar was not having a great day, as he went and got one carcass and then was sent back up to get another one.

He said ” It is arctic conditions and then desert conditions it is really terrible”. At this stage he didn’t know it was going to get worse by raining.

Some people were faring better then others Hayden was relaxed and comfortable with his tagine and cooking his lamb in hay. I would have liked to have seen a shot of this cooking.

Ellie was having a shocker, she took a long time to prep her lamb, which she was doing two ways, as well as potatoes and dessert. Her potatoes were undercooked, and her lamb overcooked.

Sun who must have been out of her comfort zone, managed to incinerate her pieces as when the fat started dripping onto the fire it became out of control. Sun wondered how Matt Moran knows her flash burnt lamb is raw by just looking at it. Considering the lamb had been only on the grill for about five minutes anyone would have been able to tell this.

However in the end Sun’s dish which was BBQ lamb with damper looked good.

Danielle  made lamb ragu with gnocchi and BBQ veges. Matt Moran said the “Gnocchi lost it’s shape, and was like mashed potato.”

Billy made lamb curry and rocky road with raspberries in it. Interesting what you will put in things when you are not paying for the ingredients. But it proved very popular.

The top two were Michael and Billy. Billy won and he deserved to as he cooked a curry as well as the rocky road.

The bottom three were Danielle, Ellie, and Peter and they will cook off in the pressure test.

George said he couldn’t fault what Peter did today. Maybe couscous is city food, and did not appeal to the country palate, I also thought his marinade for the lamb looked delicious. Peter said it was more a dish for a Balmoral Beach party.

Ellie and Danielle cried as they stood there knowing they were going to another pressure test.

So what did Kumar, Dani, Alana, Mat, and Kate cook we saw nothing of their food?



1 littlepetal { 06.26.11 at 11:20 pm }

I thought Peter cooked well tonight. Judges should have a say in the voting to decide on how well they cooked and how they performed during the cooking.

Yes, Michael dessert was great but for 4 hours he only made 1 dessert and some mashmallows!!

If the judges didn’t help Sun, Sun would have serve uncooked meat.

So Danielle has a say in the papers……. Looking forward to tomorrow elimination. Its time Ellie be eliminated. I suppose judges pet will be here to stay

2 Etc { 06.26.11 at 11:29 pm }

Christ not Ellie in the bottom again, I hope Danielel goes for good as Ellie has potential, what 21 year old do you know with her quick-thinking and food knowledge, as limited as they are compared to the others?

3 Jo { 06.27.11 at 12:14 am }

Adam said in an interview that Ellie is the best female cook in the house. Apparently she is unbeatable with a recipe but struggles without one, which is similar to what Gary said when asked to evaluate the remaining 12. It probably comes down to her age and lack of experience.

Interestingly, Gary also said that Mat is one of the most popular contestants.

I hope Danielle goes, I think she should have been eliminated anyway when Adam left.

4 JaniceG { 06.27.11 at 12:28 am }

Really annoyed that even with only 12 contestants, they couldn’t manage to show us what all the contestants were cooking or how they fared. We knew that Kumar, Dani, Alana, and Kate were safe because we barely saw them after the initial lamb shlepping except for Kate trying to help Sun out at one point, but no clue about what they cooked or how it was.

Also, wondering about how the voting worked on this one: were people really able to see what every contestant had to offer before choosing something? Didn’t look like it to me what with a crush around the single long table. Also, were they able to try more than one dish with the way the buffet was set up?

I think Michael was as shocked as most of us that he nearly won this one even though he barely did any work or offer a main course. I agree that there ought to be some MC judge input as well as audience approval to prevent travesties like Michael coming in second but Peter being in the bottom three rather than, say, Sun.

Finally, my husband is from East Gippsland and he was really to whack George and Matt every time they talked about what “country folk” like to eat as if they’re all ignorant yokels. (This despite Matt apparently being from the country himself.)

5 JC { 06.27.11 at 6:31 am }

Couldn’t agree more with JaniceG. With only twelve contestants, was it too much to ask to show any other contestant not destined for the bottom three or top two? Is Channel Ten aware there are other competitors besides Hayden? The producers have done enough to ensure that he scores a TV deal after this show with their constant fawning over their golden boy. I can see a future Hayden-led spinoff of Masterclass with the Bondi Rescue boys.

So Kate is from the country NSW. What did she cook? Alana and Dani weren’t afforded any shots of their cooking. I almost fainted when Kumar spoke as he had been on “mute” the last two weeks. [No surprises that Mat wasn’t given any camera-time love – hell hath no fury than a scorned producer].

Oh the Pressure Test will be so predictable. Ellie will burst into tears and get another consoling hug from both George and Gary. Danielle will burst into tears and won’t even be offered one of Matt’s cravat to dry her face. And Peter will burst into tears when he learns he is safe. Ellie will probably leave as this Pressure Test is to be done without a recipe.

6 littlepetal { 06.27.11 at 6:59 am }

It’s funny we all have worked out that Ellie can cook when she has a recipes but rather clueless without one. I have to admit it is due to lack of experience and she will get better with time. Still she is not good enough at this stage and they should not keep giving her another chance and eliminate those who can cook better than her.

7 Maz { 06.27.11 at 7:55 am }

Thought this episode was condescending in the manner it kept referring to ‘country folk’ as been incapable of having a sophisticated palate. They never preface a challange in terms of what the inner-city cafe latte set like to eat. But hey when has Masterchef bothered to challenge the stereotype.

8 Paula { 06.27.11 at 8:42 am }

I think it’s totally unacceptable not to show all the contestants dishes at this stage. They could at least put them on the website for people to view after the show.
Congrats to Billy – I think it is time he had a chance at immunity. His plating skills might just get him across the line, particularly if he is lucky enough to score a dessert.

9 Injera { 06.27.11 at 9:00 am }

For me, the main problem with not showing all the dishes, is that I’ll keep on wondering what Adam cooked right up until the final two, forgetting that he’s not there any more…

I thought last year’s CWA challenge taught MC not to put our cooks out in the “alaments”. Seems not.

10 Culinary Boner { 06.27.11 at 9:12 am }

George’s attire was obviously sponsored by Lowes Big Men with the result more bogan than country. He’d ‘ve been lucky to score a root with a sheep, let alone a chick, in that clobber.

Why, oh why, do they edit this so that we don’t see all the dishes? In fact I can’t even recall seeing Mat the Goth Grot all episode. Was his image expunged so as to not offend the tender sensibilities of the CWA? Had this secret society of scone nazis threatened to kidnap him and give him a bath, shave and haircut?

11 muppy { 06.27.11 at 9:39 am }

i wish we could see all the food….
guessing danielle’s a goner tonight?

12 auds { 06.27.11 at 10:07 am }

I too am annoyed we didnt get to see all the dishes. I really wanted to see what Kate cooked.

Maybe by the time we get to the final 2 we will see what they both cooked!

13 Sue { 06.27.11 at 10:33 am }

I am also sick of not seeing everyone’s dishes!! MASTERCHEF START SHOWING US ALL THE DISHES!

I think Peter was ripped off, his meal was lovely. And what on earth did Michael do all that time??

14 AngelSN86 { 06.27.11 at 10:35 am }

Alana seemed to have some kind of stew or casserole in a big red pot. Sucked that they couldn’t give us a quick ‘This person cooked this and it was okay’ for each contestant instead of spending aaaages with half the contestant and no time with others.

The votes must’ve been fairly close though. There were 200 votes for 12 contestants and the top scorers were still only 35 and 20. So pretty much all of the contestants must’ve received over 10 votes at least.

15 JaniceG { 06.27.11 at 10:40 am }

@Culinary Boner: I think they did show Mat right after they all got their lambs and think Matt M complimented him on how quickly he’d done the boning. That was about it for Mat for the rest of the show, I think. That scene went by so quickly that I didn’t even remember to name him in my list of contestants whose dishes they didn’t show!

@Maz: As I mentioned, my husband is from East Gippsland and he was also really annoyed at the way they kept talking about “country folk” and implying that their tastes were simple (“Grog like fire” :-> ). For example, he said that in his small hometown, they had cappuccino for decades thanks to Italian immigrants so it’s not like none of them would have heard of gnocchi, as the hosts were implying at one point. He also hated them using the term “hoedown,” which he said no one in this country would ever actually use.

16 Fides { 06.27.11 at 10:42 am }

The MC website accidentally spoiled this episode : they had the gallery photos up on Friday night which showed the Top 2 and bottom 3. I thought, given Michael’s meagre effort, that it would end up like a Matt Preston facebook update – that I had “misinterpreted” the photos and accompanying captions. But no, they just stuffed up with their spoilers again.

Poor Mat. I just I did spot him last night, he was wearing an aviator beanie and that was it. If what Danielle says is true about the extent to which they monitor communication, maybe in the end it was a relief to be free from that. Did these people sign up for Big Brother or a cooking show? Not that every phone call would be filmed, but with Dani’s phone conversation with her dad, see if it had been me and I was being filmed, I’d pepper the conversation with swear words I know won’t make the 7.30 timeslot.

Reckon Billy’s in with a chance on Tuesday.

17 Bruiser Brody { 06.27.11 at 10:46 am }

Does Moran even wanna be there? Basically talked down to them all whole episode, then “helps” Kumar by taking the carcass the final glory 5m, then sends the oldest dude UP the hill again… why? he done got his meat!

Morans Tips:
“Whaddya cooking?” [looks away] “Yeah? good luck!”
“Why are you cooking that?”
“Why not just cook baked potatoes [you are limited!]”
and the classic
“That’s raw” [he can tell that by looking from 5m away?], top work by the producers to actually include faint sounds of sheep “baa-ing” in the background – “*that’s* how i can tell!”

and Michael took 4 HOURS to make something Billy made in 20 mins??
Still dunno what the hell the purpose of this was outside of showing they shoud’ve learned from the Bondi test – its marketing, not cooking!
Any bets during Gary’s masterclass 90% of em were thinking, ‘when the hell am i gonna cut a whole lamb? *switch off*’
And how the hell was it fair? Did every one of the 200 try every single dish?

18 Thomas { 06.27.11 at 10:46 am }

I sometimes forget Kate and Kumar are still in the competition, with the little amount of airtime they’re given. And 11 diff types of lamb? (which you probably had for the past week as well…) I’d be screaming for fish or any other meat.

19 Chunks { 06.27.11 at 11:03 am }

Surely they must be getting embarrassed by now about describing these people as the best ammatta chefs in Australia? I realise the conditions were deplorable but honestly. At this rate none of these primary producers and manufacturers will want their products on next year’s show.

20 EH { 06.27.11 at 11:09 am }

I read in TV guide that Billy will go against some award winning home-style country baker. Ooooo… Danielle is talking, hmmm … Spoiler and goner?

21 seepi { 06.27.11 at 11:21 am }

I wanna know what kumar cooked!

Surely someone cooked a lamb stew – that’s what I would make – a great one pot meal that cannot fail.

I wonder if Michael had an accident or something – like dropped his pot of lamb. Or if a producer stepped in it or something. If he just chose off his own bat not to make any lamb, that seems a bit unfair. Altho clever in hidsight. I would not have wanted to touch those whole lambs with a barge pole.

I actually wonder if Kate and Kumar being invisible means they are about to become prominent towards the end. So we don’t get sick of them before that happens – or is that just wishful thinking from me!

22 Emma { 06.27.11 at 11:52 am }

Yeah agree with the sentiment that we should be seeing more contestants’ final dishes, there aren’t too many of them left now …

By JC – “Oh the Pressure Test will be so predictable. Ellie will burst into tears and get another consoling hug from both George and Gary. Danielle will burst into tears and won’t even be offered one of Matt’s cravat to dry her face. And Peter will burst into tears when he learns he is safe. ”

hahaha summed up pretty much what I said last night!

IMO, Ellie needs to (wo)man up and go get an apprenticeship! She’s the right age and should stop wasting time at uni if that isn’t what she wants to do. She obviously has the ability.

23 Jane { 06.27.11 at 11:56 am }

Honestly, couldn’t the producers have stumped up for a marquee? Or don’t they have those in the country? I was wondering how many came down with raging colds the next day after being out in the freezing weather.

Yes – let’s see what everyone’s cooking now there’s only 12 contestants (soon to be 11).

24 brain dead dave { 06.27.11 at 12:01 pm }

We’re not going to see everyone’s final dishes..cos’ this year it’s all about the cooking.

25 littlepetal { 06.27.11 at 12:05 pm }

I forgot to mention I love the sight of the contestants getting into the cars to go to the farm in their apron. As if they are going there to cook immediately.

What did we see, they arrive in their aprons (who travel in a car with their aprons on) and it was getting dark and all they did was get a briefing for the next day cooking. Very funny.

26 brain dead dave { 06.27.11 at 12:37 pm }

Good thing Jowlsy was left at home. The “country folk’ might have tarred and feathered him or mistaken him for an escaped pig.

27 Pollywaffle { 06.27.11 at 1:10 pm }

Thanks BDD – you’ve now got the theme from ‘Deliverance’ stuck in my head….

” what in tarnation is yon thang around ya neck pig boy?”

28 brain dead dave { 06.27.11 at 1:38 pm }

This year’s theme music for Ma$terchef should be “Duelling Bogans”

Yee haw…we done got us a pig with a cree-vat!

29 Culinary Boner { 06.27.11 at 2:09 pm }

Speaking of classic 70s fillums like Deliverance, why did they not make this shearing shed episode a homely to Sunday Too Far Away?

Matt Moran could have reprised the Foley role (Jack Thomson) and delivered his insightful you-sure-you-want-to-serve-that-shit advice whilst in the nuddy, waggling his butt to camera. His old man did a pretty good Max Cullen impersonation too and how effing sensational were his motivational speeches.

Not enough sheep in the shots though. Where were the fucking sheep? Down the road at the local cafe? ‘carn Freemantle, if youse are going to patronise country folk, make a decent of it will ya? That set should have resembled Teletubby Land, but with a sheep/lamb for every bunny the Tubbies normally have to step over. Get ya act together, city boys.

30 brain dead dave { 06.27.11 at 2:27 pm }

Excellent idea, Boner..maybe tweak the title to Sundae Too Far Away.

As for tonight …it will be a case of The Three Stodges

A small, lamb based sponge would have been good…a Lambington, that is..

31 Reality Raver { 06.27.11 at 2:30 pm }

Agree with commenters re the unfairness of the voting. How can it be a fair vote if you don’t taste all of the dishes.

32 Reality Raver { 06.27.11 at 2:31 pm }

LOL BDD and Culinary Boner

33 scruffnkelsmum { 06.27.11 at 3:33 pm }

IMO, that’s bullshit re needing his phone for an “important call”… in these situations there is ALWAYS an emergency contact number (confidential too) for people to get in touch with a contestant urgently if required. trying to save face now is my guess for the excuses coming out of the woodworks. Bottom line is- whether he used it or not, HE KNEW it was expressly against the rules to have a phone…. so derrrrr, he’s gone!!!!!

and now, back to the show….could we please see some …..COOKING??????????

34 davsimp { 06.27.11 at 3:41 pm }

Here is a hilarious article from the Herald talking about the masterchef contestants cooking for “country folk”

35 davsimp { 06.27.11 at 3:55 pm }

So is this how it’s going to be from now until Mat leaves? Giving him the least amount of air time possible? He wasn’t at the Masterclass on Friday, and that wasn’t even acknowledged. You would think maybe a “Mat is ill tonight so won’t be joining us here for this class” or something of the like. When Ellie was sick the other day a song and dance took place about it.

He wasn’t there when the boot scooting dance off took place, and only got two brief head shots throughout the whole lamb hacking challenge. Is the idea to just phase him out gradually and act as though he was never there? Or will we actually see them asking him to leave? Wonder who they have got lined up to jump in his grave……

36 brain dead dave { 06.27.11 at 4:44 pm }

They could have been cardboard replicas of Mat with a lot of grease and dirt thrown on for effect.

37 davsimp { 06.27.11 at 4:53 pm }

BDD, funny you should say that because it did actually cross my mind that it may not have been him. His head was down and they could have just got some drone with black hair to fiddle about with a knife and a carcass to stand in for him. However, at the very end of the episode I did see him in the back line when the three least impressives were called up.

38 littlepetal { 06.27.11 at 5:20 pm }

I think when the time comes to announce Mat’s departure, they will just announce that Mat has to leave the show as he is waiting for a very important phone call and he can’t miss the call. This could happen in New York!!!

39 brain dead dave { 06.27.11 at 6:24 pm }

I was thinking of the Fleetwood Mac video for Tusk where they actually did use a cardboard cut out of their bass player.

Fremantle Media wouldn’t be above that.

40 noog { 06.27.11 at 7:34 pm }

Lambington :) mmm Very Heston!

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