MasterChef 2020 onctinues, and we’re already on our third round of heats! In episode 7, we meet 6 more hopefuls wanting to be crowned MasterChef 2020 Champion. Following the same format as previous heats, episode 7 is made up of 3 rounds.
In the first round, judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace challenge the cooks to make one dish in 1 hour 15 minutes that showcases their cooking style. After this round, the top 2 performers will be awarded with MasterChef aprons and immediately have a place in the third round. The second round sees the remaining 4 contestants battle it out with the Three Ingredients Test. This week, the judges want one star dish that showcases crab, sweetcorn and spring onion. The stakes are high in this round, as two more cooks will be sent home at the end. The final round sees the remaining contestants cook 2 courses for the judges, along with 2011 contestant, Elizabeth, 2015 finalist Robert, and 2005 champion Thomasina. In just 1 hour 15 minutes, the contestants must impress the judges and guests enough as only 3 of them will be going through to the quarterfinals.
Lets meet the chefs and see how they got on…
Steve, 55, from Cardiff is a hairdresser and learnt to fend for himself from a young age.
Signature Dish: Pan-fried salmon topped with crispy leek rings, served with crushed potatoes, pea puree, king oyster mushrooms cooked in truffle oil, pan-fried chorizo, basil and walnut pesto, served with a chorizo oil and garnished with red pac choi micro cress and cut salad peas.
John complimented lots of elements and said the salmon was ‘beautifully cooked‘, but there was too much on the plate. This led to the plate being ‘messy‘.
Gregg agreed and said there were ‘far too many things together‘. He did however enjoy elements of the dish.
Sahar, 58, is originally from Iran, but lived in Dubai for 28 years before moving to the UK with her family.
Signature Dish: Dolmeg felfel – a Persian stuffed bell pepper filled with beef mince, rice and herbs, served with a spicy tomato sauce and garnished with a coriander leaf.
John was pleased with the dish, saying the pepper was soft and he really liked the filling.
Gregg agreed that there were ‘wonderful‘ flavours in the pepper. Overall he said it was a ‘good dish’.
Emily, 44, from Derbyshire, enjoys experimenting with molecular gastronomy and hopes to open her own cookery school one day.
Signature Dish: Smoke infused mackerel tartare, spiced with horseradish and paprika, served on sous vide beetroot in balsamic vinegar, pickled cucumber, beetroot and ancho chilli syrup and a beetroot flatbread, garnished with butterfly sorrel edible flowers.
Gregg said the pate was smooth and smelt smoky, although it didn’t taste particularly smoky. Overall, Gregg felt it was a ‘pleasant‘ dish but not ‘outstanding‘.
John loved the flavours of the beetroot and balsamic, but said all of the elements together drowned the mackerel.
Eamonn, 49, from London, enjoys creating dinner party menus for family and friends.
Signature Dish: Broad bean, mint and ricotta ravioli with pine nuts and a lemon butter sauce, topped with grated parmesan.
John agreed with Eamonn’s flavours, saying mint, broad bean and ricotta together are a ‘marriage made in heaven’. He was however disappointed that there was too much vinegar in the sauce, saying that wipes the freshness from the mint.
Gregg appreciated Eamonn’s cooking, saying the ravioli had been ‘nicely made’. It was just the sauce he found ‘far too acidic’.
Jasmeet, 37, is a graphic designer and enjoys cooking for his extended family.
Signature Dish: Chicken Changezi – a chicken curry in a spicy cashew nut and almond sauce – served with jasmin rice and a rolled poppadum, garnished with coriander leaf.
John said the dish was ‘great‘. He enjoyed the chicken, saying it was ‘soft and tender‘, but he would’ve just liked a little more sauce.
Gregg agreed that it was a nice dish, saying it had good taste and the rice was cooked ‘perfectly‘.
Amy, 31, from Nottingham, takes inspiration from her mum and developed her style of cooking when travelling overseas.
Signature Dish: Lemon and goats cheese ravioli with a butter and peppercorn sauce, crispy oregano leaves, parmesan and balsamic pearls.
John was thoroughly impressed with Amy’s dish. He said ‘I think it’s very, very good‘.
Gregg was equally as impressed with the dish. He loved the fried oregano leaves, saying that was ‘very clever‘.
All the cooks performed well, although two stood out most. At the end of this round, the contestants going home were Steve and Emily. Meaning Eamonn and Jasmeet had won themselves a MasterChef apron and were through to the next round.
The final round saw 4 cooks come down to 3. At the end of this round, the guest judges Cook of the Day was Amy. John and Gregg also had a Cook of the Day; Sahar. The final cook going through to the quarterfinals would be Jasmeet, meaning it was goodbye and good luck for the future to Eamonn.
Daniella, 25, is a Paralegal and likes to cook fusion food, paying homage to her Korean heritage.
John was impressed with Daniella’s pasta, saying it was very well made, and had a ‘really lovely‘ filling. It was just the broth he found a bit salty, which resulted in the dish being a little ‘wishy-washy‘.
Gregg wasn’t thrilled by the dish, he was pleased with certain elements although found the dish on the whole to be in the ‘middle‘ between Asian and Italian cooking.
Patryk, 39, was born in Poland, and since 1989, he started to see lots of cookery programmes which opened his eyes to cooking.
Signature Dish: Ballotine of chicken, stuffed with sausage meat and wrapped in streaky bacon, with chicken breast, pickled beetroot, potato and chive puree, glazed carrots, crispy chicken skin and a chicken jus. Garnished with rocket micro cress.
John enjoyed the flavour of the stuffing is good, saying it was reminiscent of a good chicken stuffing. Although, he found the inside of the stuffing ‘dry’ and in need of a little ‘moisture’.
Gregg was pleased with the dish and complimented all elements, he particularly found the chicken breast to be cooked ‘perfectly with crispy skin‘. It was only the presentation Gregg said needed work.
Christian, 36, recently retired from playing professional rugby.
Signature Dish: Pan-roasted duck breast served with parsnip puree, cauliflower, cherry gel, and a cherry port reduction, garnished with red vein sorrel.
Gregg said Christian had pretend ‘some good cooking‘; saying the skin had been seasoned nicely and he loved the cauliflower puree.
John agreed with Gregg and said there were some lovely flavours on the dish; ‘whats not to like‘.
Hannah, 33, is a music festival producer and decided to take a step in a different career direction.
Signature Dish: 3 Types of fish taco – Cajun mahi-mahi with corn and chilli salsa and coriander cream, deep fried coconut prawn with mango salsa and a papaya chipotle sauce, and pan-fried lobster with tempura avocado and sriracha mayo, all topped with a garnish of pink onions and coriander leaves.
Gregg loved the tacos, saying his ‘favourite‘ was the prawn and it was ‘absolutely beautiful‘.
John was impressed with everything Hannah had done, although said the tacos themselves were too thick.
Emma, 39, is a Marketing Manager and started cooking for her family when she was just 14.
Signature Dish: Ballotine of guinea fowl stuffed with pancetta, pistachios and leg meat with spinach, roasted shallots, carrot puree, domino potatoes and a guinea fowl jus.
Gregg said Emma’s ballotine had been cooked ‘perfectly’. Overall he loved the dish, saying ‘it tastes great’, it was only the sauce he said spoilt it.
John agreed abut the sauce and even likened it to ‘glue‘.
Mustan, 34, started cooking at university, following tutorials on his phone from his mum.
John loved the flavours Mustan had throughout the dish, starting off as a subtle spice and then developing into spicy and sweet. Overall he was thrilled and said the dish was ‘ace‘.
Gregg agreed that there was a ‘lovely mix of great flavour’. He was ‘really happy’ with the dish.
After careful consideration, the judges decided their stars of this round, and those being awarded the first two MasterChef aprons, would be Mustan and Christian. This meant they did not have to compete in the second round, and were straight through to the third round, cooking for guest judges.
In the second round, the Three Ingredients Test, the remaining 4 cooks had to battle it out for 2 MasterChef aprons. Given 50 minutes the cooks were required to use aubergine, bell peppers, and diced lamb shoulder in one star dish. At the end of this round, Emma and Hannah were awarded MasterChef aprons, meaning it was goodbye and good luck for the future to Patryk and Daniella.
The third round, all 4 cooks were given 1 hour 15 minutes to cook 2 courses for the judges and guest judges, MasterChef semi-finalist and winners, Elizabeth, James and Tim. At the end of this high pressure round, securing a place in the quarterfinals, would be Christian, Mustan and Hannah. Meaning it was goodbye and good luck for the future to Emma.