Masterchef Australia – We Have A Top 24, But Yukio Did Not Make It
What is the policy on using stock on Masterchef? Last week we had Gary going ballistic at Matthew about using pre-made stock pushing the offending article under his nose.In that case Matt only had 60 minutes to finish his risotto, unlike tonight where the twelve contestants had 90 minutes to complete their dish. However Gary and George made no comment about the unmarked stock containers on the benches of at least two contestants tonight. See evidence below. There appears to be some hypocrisy on this issue.
Tonight the selected twelve who were battling it out of the last six spots had to cook a french dish, and to add to the pressure they had as guest judge french chef Jacque Raymond.
They were cooking at Montsalvat, the oldest artist colony in Australia. And it looked damn hot all the guys were sweating profusely into their dishes. Hopefully the judges had their Hep A shots before the series commenced.
As with each year there were people in the top 50 we hardly saw, which was code for they were not going to get through. So Keene, Roger and Harvey it was nice not knowing you.
However the biggest travesty was Yukio not getting in. This is the one of the first controversial decisions of the series. OK so this series is all about the cooking, but also there needs to be some entertaining personalities on there. He was a great polarising character.
Fillippo thankfully was selected even though the judges had been fairly benign about his Pissaladerie and quite critical of his cherry clafoutis. In fact Matt Preston called it a cherry omelette.
Emma was smart she kept well within her dessert bar comfort zone and made a macaron with salted caramel filling. She was warned by Jacque not to put too much salt in the caramel but in the end was criticised for there not being enough. Strangely she only presented the four judges with three macarons saying it looked better on the plate. She was the last one through to the top 24, and on Twitter people were saying the 19 year old was this year’s Dani. She appears to be talented but think once she has to cook savoury dishes week after week she will struggle.
Kath the Director of an art gallery got told off by Jacque for putting her Bouillabaisse in a food processor. He advised her to put it in a mix master. The judges thought it was great but did give her a tickle up about how messy she was when she cooked. George Calombaris also said she needed to clean the mussels better.
Mindy the physio from Brisbane who has given up her job and home made pork belly and scallops with apples. It was a taste of Normandy. Jacque thought it was brilliant. Matt Preston thought it was the best dish she had cooked in the competition. She was in.
Mario the car detailer cooked Duck a’lorange with liver pate and grand marnier jelly which melted and compromised his sauce. Gary thought “The duck was well cooked, but the pate one of the worse I have seen”.
At least Mario admitted he did not think it would get him through. However Jacque loved it however thought the liver pate was unnecessary. He was in the top 24.
Karen cooked choux ala rose. However, Jacque thought the creme patissiere was too runny and the rose water overpowered the dish. Goodbye Karen.
Dom the 20 year old student made stuffed chicken wings with seared scallops and sauce albufera. Matt Preston asked whether she had the maturity to go on to survive in the Masterchef kitchen. We did not get hear the reply but it must not have eased their concerns as she did not make it.
Debra made the Walnut and Roquefort Tart her own twist on the witlof and pear salad. However she did have a pared back witlof and pear salad to serve with it. Jacque thought it was a great interpretation of the salad and Gary thought it was absolutely beautiful. It was the dish of the day and she was into the top 24.
Yukio was sent on his way, and philosophically said maybe he will find a different path. The judges showered the contestants with champagne with Amina scuttling off to the sidelines to avoid it probably for religious reasons.
The top 24 has 14 females and 10 males. There are eight finalist from NSW, seven from Victoria, three from Queensland and Western Australia, and one each from South Australia, Tasmania and the Northern Territory.
I will put the top 24 names up when they are all up on the Masterchef Australia website tomorrow.