MKR – Wed, March 2

It’s the first cook of redemption round and, sadly, we are stuck back with Pete and Manu. Boo hoo. Here we go with another interminable round of loser cooks, and we no longer have the up side that is Colin’s accent and Rachel’s poise.
This is where Chloe and Kelly started from last year, right? And where are they now? Oh, yeah, sacked from their gig as restaurant reviewers.
We’re in WA and it’s Duck Nutters Nev and Kell. Please, Nev, no more sacrilege of burnt crackle. Last time they got 56.
There’s a talking head edit from the Stepsies about the great unknown that it is the other teams and it’s time for the twinning outfits to stop.

Enough, already!

Enough, already!


At least because we’ve met them already the Coles shopping takes all of 15 seconds, then they’re off to pick up some marron. The marron shop lady genteely asks: “Do you want them to be euthanased?”
They are not mucking around and whip through setting up their tacky Hollywood-themed restaurant.
Their menu is:
Entree: Grilled marron with lemon and dill butter (this will have to be perfectly cooked but good on them for taking a risk – the judges will love it if it works)
Main: Eye fillet with sweet potato mash and red wine jus (Oops, sorry, it’s a “juss”, according to Kell.)
Dessert: Baked vanilla cheesecake (What’s with all the cake-type desserts this year – there’d better be some more elements.)
In the kitchen they crack on with the cheesecake, determined to redeem themselves after their apple pie disaster. Surprisingly, Kell is doing the crumb all up the side of the tin, which is just asking for bits to break off when they cut it later. They are bickering a little over the best method, so the tension is creeping in, but compared to last night’s shocking behaviour it’s still happy days.
Nev gets on to the entree and is determined to show the judges he heeded their advice to keep things simple. He also says “juss”. They do seem more relaxed this time round and are having a bit of fun in the kitchen. At one point Nev shows he knows how to segment citrus fruit – can he please give the Miners a lesson so they serve no further pith-filled salads.
The guests arrive and Non-Man Bun miner has drawn the stylist short straw. Did he get Jess’s old stylist?
Wrong.

Wrong.


At the table the guests play “guess the relationship” and Rosie is surprised to learn the Miners aren’t in fact surf lifesavers. A fan of Bondi Rescue, perhaps.
Hazel reveals she has a dog. What kind? “A Shih-teze.” Hmm, maybe that’s what they needed after eating Dee’s food.

In the kitchen Nev is cleaning marron as the judges pull of the the strains of Foo Fighters’ Learn to Fly. Who knows why. The doorbell rings and the music switches to the angstier Chilli Peppers’ Higher Ground, which probably refers to Manu’s skyscraper slick of hair.

Did Pete get orangier in the break?

Did Pete get orangier in the break?


The Stepsies are beside themselves to be in the presence of Panu. The guests are reminded the two worst teams will be booted, but Manu reveals: “But all eez not what it sims. Once you’ve all coked, get ready for a game-changing surprise.” Come on, Manu, I know you’re a party boy but should you be encourage teams to “coke”? What does it all mean?
Duck Nutters explain the menu, including their red wine “juss” and Hazel does this to hide her laughter:
juss
Manu relishes the chance to be the one correct other’s pronunciation for a change.
Cop Megan interrogates everyone about their scores and is pleased to learn she and Cop 2 are up the top. It seems like ages ago – I have vague memories of boring salmon fillet and veg.

In the kitchen they are cooking the marron and – hooray – tasting the food before it goes out. Nev thinks it’s under, Kell thinks it’s spot on. Dee and Tim, watch their interaction and support for each other, even when they disagree. The dish looks prettier than in this official MKR photo.


Chew time … Panu look to be having a little trouble tearing the meat out – I’ve never eaten marron but I know from years of watching MasterChef this means it’s undercooked. Manu leads them into a trap by asking: “How do you think you went?” and they think they did fine.
Manu: “It’s undercooked. When you cook shellfish like this, when it’s black, when it’s cooked, it turns red. This is still black.”
Lisa’s reaction says it all.
lisaeyes
Then it’s Pete’s turn to gut the Nuts. He schools them in the fact the claws actually have the tastiest flesh (they haven’t cracked them for the guests and Nev confesses they don’t eat that bit), they’ve underseasoned and he can’t taste the lemon or dill. Ouchies.
Nev is gutted but keeps it together at the table.
brave
We’re reminded of Paige’s one-liners when she whispers to Rosie: “What happens is I eat under marron; am I going to do?”
Lauren – who is happy to serve guests uncooked seafoof – declines to try much of her marron. Non-Man Bun miner seems to have scored a cooked one and Lisa is hilariously trying to bash open a claw with her fork handle, while Carmine – dangerously – uses his teeth.
Lauren is being reserved in her comments and the Stepsies take note.

Back in the kitchen Nev is bucking up a despondent Kell. Then, they crack on with the main and Nev is cooking the steaks before Kell has even but the veg in boiling water for the mash. Again they’ve picked a tough one having to do 12 individual serves.
At the table Cop Monique is leading everyone in a game of “stick the table decorations on your face” and Lauren looks like she is actually enjoying herself.
It’s delightful to see a contestant using a meat thermometer (if you don’t have one, go get one – this Matt Preston article may convince you http://tinyurl.com/zzzw83c
I’m surprised Nev is blanching the asparagus and then tossing it through hot oil. Where’s the butter? He’s happy with the jus flavour but thinks it’s too thin. If he hadn’t cooked his steaks so early he could have reduced his jus. At least the soz jug is a decent size.

Chew time: Ducks Nuts are desperately trying to get a glimpse of the inside of a the judges’ steaks. Surely they did a tester that we didn’t see. Manu: “The jus was really, really tasty. Probably not the right consistency; but tasty… This is why I wanted to kick your butt a little, so you could deliver a main course like this.” Pete says they still needed more seasoning and takes a leaf out of Rachel Khoo’s book by telling Kell to roast the sweet potato next time before mashing. “This is what we’re after: Simple, but tasty.”
The Cops have twigged to Lauren’s nicey-nice game and know she’s one to watch, and we know from the ads fireworks are on the way.
Back in the kitchen Nev is worried about the basicness of their cheesecake. Pete pops in to chat – am I right that Colin and Rachel did not do these spontaneous pop-ins – and Nev bounces off him the idea of doing a raspberry soz, but Kell is adamant fresh berries will do. As Nev says, it will only take a jiffy to whip one up, so why not.
At the table they are debating the simplicity of the dessert and Lauren unknowingly quotes Hayden Moss from Survivor Blood versus Water when she says: “I don’t want to rustle any feathers.” Can you now hear the autumn leaves ruffling, Lauren?
It’s time to cut the cheesecakes and Kell can’t watch. They look nice and high and Kell is happy – until Nev insists on adding a little dish of his hastily whipped up berry sauce. It’s been dusted with icing sugar, so look away, Jess.

Chew o’clock … Pete chastises them for not serving it as they usually do, which is just with fruit. It didn’t need the coulis because it was “faultless”. However, the superfluous coulis did taste good. Pete’s critique: “It was the duck’s nuts, mate.”
Man Bun Miner is in heaven with his dessert.
I’m glad they had one win for the night – I may actually look up this recipe.

Happy days.

Happy days.

Team score: Miners 9 (sticking up for their mates with the scoring – will the favour be returned?), Lauren and Carmine 7, Stepsies 6, Cops 6, SA Besties 6. With these scores they are on track to beat their initial 56.
Judges: Entree Pete 1, Manu 2; Main Pete 7, Manu 7; Dessert Pete 10, Manu 10 (okay, here’s the recipe http://tinyurl.com/gns4ka8 or you can watch Better Homes on Friday night)
Total 71. That should see them safe.

On Sunday night it’s the cops’ turn and it’s another soup for entree but it looks like Lauren provides the spice.



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35 Comments

      • I thought that ( that they hadn’t cooked marron before) until Duck Nut said they don’t eat those bits when referring to the claws, digging a culinary hole for himself. I had visions of him getting a Mud Crab and binning the claws. That’s “passion” for youse.

        • Our neighbour is lazy and can’t be bothered with eating painted cray spiders. So he gives them to us and he keeps the tail. I love lazy neighbours.

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          • I am lazy too. Woolif shells crabs for me or I won’t bother eating them. Diddums, hey? Just call me Laurina Princess. 😙

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  1. All I’m hoping is that Paige and Rosie survive. I love those two. I would so want to go to dinner with them, you know?

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    • Me too Windsong. I wish they shared a house and lived next door to me, they seem like great fun. Them & the lovely Italian men. Only 2 teams I’d like to see go through really.

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    • Their images are plastered over a few Adelaide buses. Yet to see a Lauren/ Concreter example.

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  2. I’ll hate it if I’m right but I think there is going to be a second redemption round where the bottom two from this group face off against the first three pairs eliminated. Please let me be wrong!

      • “Welcome to Komback Kitchen! Let’s bring back de tree eliminated tames!”

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    • Lord, I hope you’re wrong. Dee and Jess on a television screen at the same time would be horrifying. Gosh, I can’t even remember who the eliminated team was from the first round. It was that long ago.

  3. I recorded so I could fast forward all the narration parts hoping I didn’t have to hear “ducks nuts” ever again. It makes me cringe! Thanks Manu, for ruining my night.

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  4. Did you realise they started to use some fancy French cooking terms but couldn’t get it right.

    Maybe some cooking classes between the IR rounds

    • They can’t have watched much of the show or other cooking shows for that matter. It’s not new or unusual for jus to be served with meat dishes.

      • There’s no “juss” tification for not knowing. Might just as well have “Bogan” tattooed on their foreheads.

  5. I love that Alex and Gareth (the two studly miners) gave a really high score. You could make an argument that a 9 may have been a little undeserved … but, it’ll totally undercut any voting shenanigans. If people are scoring strategically, the boys will just cheerfully come and throw in really high scores to balance. I think that’s hilarious.

    I also liked how one of the policewomen figured out Lauren was a little bit shifty. They might not be the most skilled chefs in the world, but sometimes those police instincts seem to be on the ball.

    • I think the 9 was given because either by ignorance or miracle their maron was actually cooked so they actually got 3 decent courses and judged accordingly.

    • I have to give the police girls kudos as they have worked out Lauren straight up, even tho she was being nice tonight and they weren’t in her original group. I wonder how long Lauren will stay “nice” ?
      Like you said, those police instincts are on the ball.

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      • Maybe Lauren and her puppet popped out for one their interviews and the other contestants spilled the beans on each others group.

  6. Zana has mentioned about another villian which means Lauren must be in the Top 13.

    I am sick of Carmine and Lauren saying competition dish.

  7. I was surprised Lauren and her yes man gave a 7. I think I would have given them a 5, 6 tops. Even though they pulled the main and dessert off, they were both very basic meals for a competition.

    If I had been Kell I would have told Nev where to shove his raspberry sauce but she went along with him, because he knows best. (Vomit)

  8. Strategy… if you can’t pull off highly technical dishes… cook the basic stuff and do it well and you’ll get by. Generally these shows the contestants that start off fab and doing well never win.. the producers know that audiences generally love contestants who “grow” as the season progresses.

    So basically never show your true hands in the restaurant rounds, which is hard to do.. but all you have to do it nail basic dishes and get around 30/50 from the guests and about 40/60 from Manu and you should be alright.

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    • steaks…. he cooked fn steaks!
      Required technical skill: put steak on heat; wait; put in thermometer; serve
      (sorry forgot: talk about how many ways you could apparently fk this up, and how you want it to turn out)
      Brilliant!

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      • That’s the point.. this early in the competition just nailing the basics will garner you points… not the complexity of the dish.

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  9. When I think of nailing the basics , I think of Duck Nut being blissfully oblivious to the colour change in a cooked marron and the knowledge that crabs , yabbies, marron etc really do have the best meat in the claws. There’s even a better chance that the meat inside the claws will be more cooked that Duckie’s pitiful offering.

    While being able to pronounce “jus” is no technical feat, it does speak volumes to suggest that team Duck Nuts and would be out of their depth in a bird bath. Youse know what I mean?

    I also can’t relate to people who cry when they pull a cheesecake out of their ar$e as evidence of their “passion” for food.

    I suppose it is still “early” in the comp but we have been at it for a calendar month and the show is being dragged out like Cagney death scene..

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  10. From Juz’s recap~ “Surprisingly, Kell is doing the crumb all up the side of the tin, which is just asking for bits to break off when they cut it later.” Thanks for the recap.

    I’m watching “Juss”tine Schofield knock out a cheesecake on today’s show and her offsider lined the tin with paper as fundamental. I can’t recall Kell doing that or not.

    • I think she just greased it. We are seeing way too many cakes. Cheesecake is afternoon tea – not a dessert in a fancy cooking comp. I want something moussey with a compote, a crumb and a tuille. I’d like someone to produce a dessert using a soda siphon.

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