Monday, October 02, 2017

Masterchef 13

Immunity challenge - Sarah, Eloise and Sam have to use waffles! They're apparently a worldwide culinary treat, yet I can barely remember eating them. except for the tragic versions you make yourself for breakfast in cheap American hotels. This is the second time round for Sarah. Eloise said "going forward". I thought I liked her! Sam’s family is big on waffles, so he’s keen. Eloise terrified, Sarah has a plan - kaya (Malaysian coconut jam) and mangoes. Coconut is the go for Sam as well. Eloise has a mighty big chicken - going to have fried chicken and waffles. No time to shake, mate! But she doesn’t know how to make waffles! Sam has test waffles already - needs to make some adjustments (more butter). Sarah has fried off some curry leaves. Eloise has a mess, not waffles. Sam has no toppings at 15 minutes in - his plan is for caramelised banana, chocolate and rum, toasted macadamia. But will they match his batter? Passionfruit pulp might be the answer. Sarah’s belting at cardamom with a saucepan because she can’t find mortar and pestle. Getting a panic on. Whisking egg whites by hand - at a million miles an hour! Don’t get in the way George. No time for a test waffle. Eloise doing karaage chicken but how are the waffles? Beautiful! Yikes - four minutes to go, waffles take six and Sarah is just putting them on to cook. A wee bit blonde, crispy enough? Wow - what a high energy round!

Judging: Sarah first.Only Shannon seems to know the origins of the dish. Not quite cooked, sadly, although tastes come through. Sam - pours his rum and chocolate sauce over, very liberal with it. Toppings are great - lots of sweetness, real crowd pleaser. Eloise - she’s played into the hands of the judges, and the look they give when the dish turns up says it all. I like the look of it, even the salad. Matt just chuckles as he eats. She’s obviously done it. Chili caramel sauce. Cafe quality food.

Round two - Eloise v Charlie Carrington (left school at 14 to cook, has worked with Shannon, David Thompson has a place called Atlas Dining - 100% cooks with fire). Matt puts the scare into Charlie by talking about Eloise’s previous efforts. Pantry choice is between healthy v indulgent! Booze tips the balance I suspect. No butter and cream on the healthy side doesn’t help. I’m really liking Eloise, despite her use of going forward. Going right into indulgence with a rich chocolate mousse and peanut butter ice cream. But eggs are on the wrong side - how to make mousse? Thickened cream might do the job, and make it even more indulgent.Uses a, iSi gun to force out the mousse. Honey roasted macadamias and a nut biscuit crumble to add textures. Ice cream has come out perfect, despite no eggs. Belts in the whiskey! Don’t fall apart now, Eloise - 1 minute and nothing on the plate.
Charlie - says he’s nervous, looking for savoury, seafood. Ha! Not his bag.Oreos, fried bread, cherries in ginger beer, chocolate ganache, cashew praline.Nothing fresh. Ah - the oreos are for his snacks. He found a mortar and pestle - where was it when Sarah was looking for it? He can hear Eloise is doing well, no fresh produce is his worst nightmare. What can he add? Mascarpone and ginger beer foam. But will it hold? Nice quenelles of chocolate.
Judging: Charlie first. “Interesting”. Clever, whimsical, pretty, cherries add tartness - but a bit non-committal, and they don’t like the foam. Shows how tough the challenge was. Eloise: it’s a big mousse! Sauce is rock and roll, a proper whiskey sauce, amazing colour, shiny mousse. No lack of commitment here! Matt - “I’m having a moment” - so delicious, so balanced, really is the complete dessert and a thing of beauty. Eloise has just outclassed Charlie on all counts! Dessert of the competition! Are they going to be surprised? Scoring: Charlie 7, 7 and 7. Eloise: 9, 9, 10! Brings a tear to my eye.


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