MasterChef – May 26 – Cake challenge

The blue team from last night’s fete challenge is facing the firing squad. Well, the cake squad. They have to play Name That Cake. I hope, as with all these challenges, that they don’t bomb out early so we can play along at home.
The first three contestants to fluff on their cake knowhow will be sent to elimination, where they have to bake – you guessed it – a cake. And this will be the last night we see Nigella.

The contestants enter and the cakes are already on display, so as the judges talk they are sneaking peeks. Intense Matt is very worried but you’d imagine if Charlie or Con go through to elimination they at least are used to doing sweet stuff.
Matt gets first pick and chooses what looks like a brick of a lamington – but he’s worried it may be a trick and they are messing with his mind. But, yes, it is what it seems.
Airline captain Brett picks the Swiss roll and then it’s Con’s turn. He picks a carrot cake and Elise grabs black forest (one of my faves), Charlie gets cheesecake. Mimi has orange and poppyseed cake and it’s Matt’s turn again. He grabs the ginormous Victoria sponge cake (how many eggs went into that monster?) and Brett then gets mudcake. So far no tricks. Con gets opera cake, Elise angel cake (does she mean angel food cake?). Charlie is up and he’s sweating bullets. He’s up between what looks like two fruitcakes and Gary and George do the “wow, brave man”. “If you name this, you’re a legend,” says George. Charlie knows it’s not right but he says “fruitcake”. It’s a simnel cake – a type of Easter cake. So Charlie is the first one to bomb.
Mimi grabs a Paris brest, which is like a giant profiterole. Matt selects a cake with chocolate truffles on top but he gets a surprise when he slices it. “I’m worried for you, Matt,” says Gaz. “Even my palms are sweating.” Matt says “chocolate truffle cake” but it’s a Dobos torte. Never heard of it, but thanks to the magic of Wikipedia I now know: A Hungarian sponge cake layered with chocolate buttercream and topped with caramel. The five-layer pastry is named after its inventor, Hungarian confectioner József C. Dobos, who aimed to create a cake that would last longer than other pastries in an age when cooling techniques were limited. The round sides of the cake are coated with ground hazelnuts, chestnuts, walnuts, or almonds, and the caramel topping helps to prevent drying out.
If Intense Matt goes tonight I will be cranky.
Brett reckons it’s time to pick a cake he’s had his eye on from the start and has been keeping up his sleeve – but then he cuts it and he starts second guessing himself. But he goes for moon cake, the Asian treat, and he’s right.

Con comes up for his third go and picks what looks to be some kind of layered meringue. He says continental cake but it’s some Icelandic cake called Vinarterta. So that’s our bottom three – damn – I wanted to know what the other cakes were.
Elimination challenge
Con, Charlie and Matt have 90 minutes to bake a cake. It’s not long to mix, bake and cook a cake for decorating.
Con is making a pound cake but he reckons he doesn’t have a tried and true recipe. He must only know finicky desserts and ABPC recipes. His cake will have a savoury strawberry and thyme savoury syrup and lemon creme fraiche filling.
Intense Matt is making carrot cake with lemon cream cheese icing. Yum, but he’d better tricksy it up a bit – chuck some $7 rocky road on it, Matt. He’s following his mate’s mum’s recipe but he’s spicing it up a bit.
Charlie is baking a chocolate and raspberry sponge cake with hazelnuts but he puts all his mixture into one pan, so it will take longer to cook. Nigella comes over to tell him off for not splitting the mix.
Con is worried about timing so he cranks his temp up to 200C, until Nigella comes over to tell him off as it needs a low, slow, bake. I’m sensing a theme here. Will Intense Matt get a talking to next?
After panicking, Con decide to ignore Nigella and stick with the pound cake. I’m thinking Con is going home.
Matt is doing an onion and carrot jam with star anise and cinnamon for the centre of this cake. He’s the only one doing something a bit different. Then he works on the best bit of any carrot: the lemony cream cheese icing.
Poor Charlie says “it’s do or die” as he realises his sponges aren’t cooked in the centre and he has to bung them back in the oven.
Intense Matt is getting a lot of confessionals about how much fun he’s having, whereas Charlie’s are about all the glitches.
“Now it’s time to just go to town on this bad boy… to make it overloaded with love,” Matt tells the camera.
However, Con is surely going because he got the back story about quitting his job and delaying his wedding.
Charlie has done lots of fancy pants decorating stuff with toffeed hazelnuts, while Matt has gone the rustic look and Con’s cake looks, well, simple and fine, but he’s worried it’s dense.
The judges taste

Matt’s carrot cake: “To me that is everything a home-baked cake should be … it looks generous and it looks like you want to feed someone and make them happy,” says Nigella. George dishes up and it looks terrific. Nigella likes the zing of the marmalade and Gaz is in hog heaven.
Con’s thyme pound cake: “It looks heavy,” say the judges. Nigella says it’s not evenly cooked because he bammed up the heat. Matt says the syrup has barely soaked into the cake: “It’s rubbery, it’s bouncy.” The love the flavours he’s used but not the texture. Oh dear.
Charlie’s choc raspberry hazelnut sponge: The judges say it looks dense. Matt loves the mix of flavours but Gaz says “that cake’s dry and dense” and points out he’s not going back for seconds. But Nigella defends the cake’s honour: “I don’t think it’s a failure as a cake … I don’t think it’s offensive.” Matt says Charlie overbaked it.
They do the “Matt’s safe but the other two are sooooo close”. Yeah, as if you are going to send golden boy Charlie home.

And the loser is …
Ok, first it’s time for the judges to praise Intense Matt and it’s lovely to see the look of joy creep over his face as he absorbs Nigella’s praise. I’m Team Intense Matt.

And Con’s gone. Go home and marry your fiancee – and in a surprise twist, the remaining contestants will cater your wedding! Now, that would be fun. Gaz, for once, is not wearing his cranky pants and tells Con he has talent. And where’s Con now? Moved to Hobart to open a Melbourne-style cafe.
Time for masterclass so I’m out.



  1. I love the look of some of these cakes, especially some of the more ornate ones. That (fruit?) cake Charlie chose looks delicious.

  2. 3. Carrot Cake
    4, Black Forrest Cake
    6. Orange & poppy seed cake
    7. Victoria sponge
    8.Mud cake
    9.Opera cake
    10.Angel cake
    11. Sminel Cake ??? Charlie is baking
    12. Paris Brest (another channeling Grandma)
    13. Dobre Torte (Matt is baking)
    14. Mooncake

      • Me neither. We finally learnt something new. Though in second round we think we are regressing. Bake the cake challenge was more fun with Merle.

        Just seen Con’s flashback.

      • I knew that one but couldn’t remember the actual name. Screaming at the TV, “it’s the Easter one, you know, the one with the eggs on top!”.

        • Yeah, I had a cook book back in my 20’s & it had all these exotic European cake recipes. I used to experiment with them. I could picture that simnel cake but couldn’t remember the name till Nigella said it. I saw what looked like a German stollen on the table. I used to make it a lot.

    • I knew the lamington, carrot cake, black forrest, I just guessed orange, Victoria sponge, that mud cake seemed to have icing sugar on top not chocolate icing. I’ve seen recipes for simnel cake but the name escaped me till Nigella said it. I’d seen the Paris brest too but had forgotten what it was called.

  3. Pick that cake rounds is going excruciatingly slow!
    Sorry Charlie and intense Matt are in the second round. I don’t mind these two contestants.
    Those cakes look so yummy!

  4. I’d be good at this!my mum was a CWA mum. There’s some easy ones for me – princess and Battenberg are very recognisable.

    • I checked out the Princess Cake (and saved the recipe) – it reminds me of the frog cakes you get from the bakery. They have a domed layer of cream (mock, I think) covered with green marzipan.

    • Mr Juz is watching with me (a rare occurrence but he was lured in by “cake”) and can’t believe they don’t show the rest.

  5. And here we are again, a guy is going home.
    And how can you enter this show without having a go-to recipe. Based on that alone, I vote for Con to go home.

    • Whole cakes are so yesterday (in some circles), that Con didn’t even think he would need one.

  6. Hoping for Mimi and Brett to be in the second round – both super annoying ,
    Have a feeling Con is going home. Not photogenic enough for television.

  7. I have enjoyed tonight’s episode. We have been entertained for a change. I don’t think I want any of them to go home.

  8. I agree Bob, entertaining episode, but I love to bake so am enjoying the process.
    Matt’s carrot cake looked awesome. It’s my favourite type of cake.

    • Matt was smart because it is very difficult to make a bad carrot cake. But he did very well with the accompaniments.

  9. Suddenly the standard has dropped to real homecook level. Not really. Homecooks can do better cakes.

  10. Thirty minutes of content spread out over eighty minutes. Let’s hope Ma$terclass has something interesting.

  11. Good luck Con in your cafe in Hobart. Hope it is a success for you. He had a good heart and attitude.

  12. I enjoyed the cake-off and I was thinking Littlepetal would have “nailed it”. I think you have even cooked most of these, Littlepetal.

    • Sorry daisy to disappoint you. I have not seen some of the cakes before. But I am happy to try to bake them.

      I have baked mooncakes but never seen a gigantic mooncake in my life.

  13. Love the recap – I’m team intense Matt too.
    I’m pretty much anti everyone else with Mimi and top knot high on my list of dislikes.
    Just went to Masterchef to check their names and saw ‘Trent’. He’s completely escaped my notice!

  14. We still haven’t seen much of Elise and the other tall girl, Elena.

    It’s embarrassing for Dessert King to not able to bake a sponge cake .

  15. So glad Charlie and Matt survived, though I liked Con too. He wears his heart on his sleeve.
    Would’ve preferred one of the Annoying Women or Harry to get the boot, but it wasn’t to be.
    Mimi gets to worship at her food idol’s altar for a little while longer – if she’s lucky, she’s permitted to wash Nigella’s feet.

  16. What was that enormous dome cake covered in mint green icing??
    I enjoyed that ep. Carrot cake, yum…
    I think people are relocating to Tasmania as it’s cheaper for rent etc, and they have a strong food culture there. (Ha! I’ve been brainwashed by this show.)

    • The green one is a Swedish princess cake – the green is marzipan and there’s cream and kind of a layered sponge cake under the dome. Actually you can try a pretty good version at ikea!

        • A Dolly Parton cake as a tribute to Nigella might have hit the brief.

          The cake knowledge on this thread is a….maz…

          • I’m surprised there isn’t such a thing as a Marie Antoinette cake, given the famous quote etc.

  17. Glad I wasn’t the only one who heard “onion” and carrot jam for Matt’s filling. Then at tasting it had turned into “orange” and carrot jam, which sounded much more appealing.

    This was the first episode this season that I have watched live. So frustrating to not be able to FF or speed up the goonies analysis. Made me realise why I have been enjoying
    the show so much – because I don’t see most of what annoys other people. Had to settle for switching channels to TBBT during the “sit-the-contestant-on-the-chair-and-make-them-cry” sections.

    • Mr Juz heard “onion”, too. I record it and usually wait for the first 30 mins to pass before I start watching so I can fast forward with ease.

    • I heard onion and carrot jam, too. I also saw Matt taste the jam and then shake the spoon over the rest of it. YUCK.

  18. Thanks for the great recap Juz.
    All those yummy cakes. I wanted to try them all. I would have picked the yummiest looking one & hoped I knew what it was. I didn’t notice a sacher torte there which is a pretty famous German/Austrian cake. I thought that cake was a strawberry mousse cake, but it was some strange cake I’d never heard of. The last 3 people that went through kind of got through by default because the first 3 got them wrong. We don’t know that they would have known the next 3 either. That doesn’t seem fair.
    I hate carrot cake, but he did do the best cake & filling & toppings. It was a shame about that chocolate sponge being too dense as it did look very yummy with all those raspberries & cream. The pound cake looked pretty ordinary. Had to laugh when Matt said when he sees thick cream covering a cake he wonders what’s wrong with it. I’ve done that many times, covered a cake in icing or cream if it doesn’t look too good.
    I really wanted to make George’s moussaka as I had heard it is great but that looked waaaay too much trouble. And that contraption he cooked the eggplant on, none of us have that lying around our kitchen.

    • And don’t we all have seaweed butter (or whatever) just lying in the back of the cupboard.
      I was looking forward to watching George cook Moussaka but changed the station at the contraption that I am never going to buy.

    • It does seem unlucky to go first in these challenges, but they do draw for position so it is just bad luck. For Brett, his knowledge saved him from going in the first three because he wzs certain of a difficult cake and saved it until all the easy cakes were gone. There is bad luck in going last too, because five of the easiest cakes were already taken.

    • Since it was a viewer’s choice dish, you’d think George would have suggested alternative methods for those who don’t have a hibachi in the high cupboard.

      The same goes for using pine nut milk for the bechamel. With pine nuts at around $80kg, it is unlikely I am going to spend $20 to make pine nut milk. George should join the rest of here on planet reality. Once he learns how to use a fork and knife, of course.

  19. Smoked vanilla ice cream coming up on Sunday night. Surely there must be a way to grind some fennel into it. This is 2016 and this is the greatest cooking show on the face of the Earth.

    Two stooges have developed this strange ritual where they stick a spoon backwards into their mouths when they pretend an amata has nailed something. Sometimes it’s hard to tell the difference between the wanderful Ma$terchef Kitchin and a mental institution ~ by George. I guess the food’s better in a mental institution.

    Bucketing down in Adelaide. Youse peeps are gonna cop it.

    Con is on Studio Ten this morning. He appears to have put a bit of weight on since he was aliminated.

    • I first noticed that hold-your-spoon-like-a-lollipop on MKR. I don’t even do that at home when I am making brownies, or something where the spoon deserves a lick (onlyone lick, then new spoon!). Hadn’t noticed on MC because I try not to watch the judges taste. It seems only Matt has any table manners.

  20. None of the cakes baked by the contestants were impressive. Maybe Matt’s tasted good but it didn’t look great. If it was entered in a baking contest it would have been a fail.

    Matt has to stay. He is one of the main narrators. 😉

  21. Masterchef have put a Name That Cake quiz up on their site, but it only includes the cakes that were chosen, although the accompanying photo shows at least three others that I don’t know and that don’t seem to have been mentioned here.

  22. Some of the cakes could be:

    Battenberg cake
    Bundy cake (based on shape)
    Kugelhopf cake (based on shape)
    Chiffon cake
    Devil food cake
    Linzer torte

    Some cakes are rediculous to be named without cutting to see what is inside.

    There could be a

    Fruit cake
    Hummingbird cake??

  23. The green dome-like one was a Swedish Princess cake. Would have been my third choice after the Schwarzwälder (was incomplete btw, the real version has a layer of shortcrust pastry on the very bottom) and the Battenberg. 😀 Hell, watching GBBO all the time really helps…

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