Tonight was the first night of Marco Pierre White week for Masterchef 2015. The night was divided into two rounds. The first round, the contestants were given ingredients and had to cook something that would impress. The judges will only taste 5 dishes. The winner of this round will have an advantage in the invention test round. The three top cooks tonight will have the chance at immunity, the bottom three will go to an elimination challenge.
The first dish they wanted to taste was Georgia’s endive cups with pickled pigface and pork crackling recipe. Marco took a bite and stared at Georgia intensely for a good 30 seconds. He said he liked the explosion of textures, not many people could create this number of flavours and textures in one mouthful. George said it was clever, creamy and crunchy.
Sara was next with her Date and muscat glazed pork with cumin salt and grazed cracklin. Marco said it eats better than it looks, she did a fantastic job, but the plating didn’t show it.
Jessica made a pork loin with endive, parmesan crumb and jus recipe. She cooked the pork very well and Marco though she had done a “very good job”.
John made a choux pastry gnocchi with pork sausage and dates recipe. Marco said the sausage was more of a date sausage than a pork sausage and the dish lost the pork flavour.
Ashleigh was the final dish to be tasted. She made a date frozen nougat with a cumin crumb and praline recipe. Marco said he liked the look of it and that it wasn’t too sweet, but he loved the caramel and cumin. George said “who would think of putting cumin in a dessert?”. She got the flavour combination right.
The winner of the mystery box was Ashleigh. She won the advantage in the invention test. The challenge was to make a dish using a base sauce (made from scratch) which made this dish shine. Ashleigh had the choice of the base sauce, there were five different sauces to choose from: Veal Jus, Hollandaise, Veloute of Chicken, Bechamel and Vegetable Nage.
Ashleigh chose the Veal Jus tonight on Masterchef.
Ashleigh has decided to cook quail but she has no idea what she actually wants to cook. She is feeling the pressure of having the advantage.
Marco walks around to contestants benches to see what they are cooking. He visits Melita’s bench and asks about her family. Talking about her family brings her to tears so Marco walks around the bench to give her a hug and some encouraging words.
Ashleigh has finally decided to roast her quail.
Matthew’s dish was first to be tasted, it was beef fillet with pommes mille feuille with a red wine sauce recipe. Matt Preston said the beef was impeccable. Marco said the ratio of wine to stock is perfect and his sauce will take some beating today.
Melita made a lamb backstrap recipe Marco said it had a nice flavour and her children “would be very proud of you”.
Jacqui made an osso bucco tortellinni recipe. Her dish had some problems, Marco said you couldn’t taste the jus. Gary said it was not a great dish at all.
Andrea’s herb crusted lamb rack and jus was “way over-reduced”, there was hardly any of it. Marco said “sometimes i over-reduce things, i just hide them better” as a way to not have her discouraged.
Fiona’s dish was “honest” and “true” and “really really tasty”. Marco said “what you have achieved is quite classical, it’s beautiful”.
Billie’s spiced duck breast with sweet potato and raspberry jus was a “really pretty little dish”. Matt said it was really clever. Gary said it was hands down the nicest sauce he had tasted so far today.
John’s “sea meets sand” had so much going on there were a “couple of dishes in there”. Matt Preston said you need to edit. Marco said you have got to know when to stop.
It was Ashleigh’s turn to be judged, she had the upper hand by picking the dish, but her quail and pumpkin puree with red wine and orang jus recipe had over-cooked quail. Gary loved the colour but the sauce was too strong, it dominated everything on the plate. Marco said, you allowed pressure to get to you and you tried too hard.
Georgia’s raviolo recipe had good flavour and the combination of hazelnut and mushroom was great. The texture was perfect and sauce was very good.
The top three contestants going through to the immunity challenge are Billie, Matthew and Georgia.
The bottom three contestants going to the elimination challenge are Andrea, Jacqui, and John.