MasterChef: The Professionals Final
December 20, 2019
MasterChef: The Professionals Final is here and on last nights episode, the chefs pulled out all the stops. The remaining 3 chefs – Olivia, Exose and Stu – secured themselves a place in the final out of 48 other chefs. In Thursdays episode, it was their final chance to show the judges everything they had learned, and prepare 3 courses for judges Monica Galetti, Marcus Wareing and Gregg Wallace to try.
The chefs had 3 hours to create a unique starter, main and dessert. It was then up to the judges to decide who had shone the most, and who would be crowned the MasterChef: The Professionals 2019 winner.
Let’s see how the chefs got on in episode 21…
Starter: Confit salmon topped with fennel pollen, salmon tartare wrapped in pickled cucumber, charred cucumber, cucumber ketchup and crispy salmon skin finished with a buttermilk and dill sauce, garnished with tarragon.
Gregg said the salmon confit was lovely and was particularly soft and flakey. He also loved the fennel pollen and said the sauce was ‘just lovely‘.
Monica was also complimentary and loved the freshness of the charred cucumber. She said the salmon skin added a nice texture and was ‘delicious‘.
Marcus enjoyed the sharp and fresh dill ketchup and said it really brought the dish together. He complimented Exose’s ‘beautiful‘ presentation and said it was a great start to the menu.
Main: Cannon of lamb, panko-coated lamb sweetbreads, artichoke barigoule, Jerusalem artichoke puree, dehydrated kale crisps, olives in an oregano and olive oil dressing, finished with a lamb sauce.
Monica said the lamb was ‘spot on‘ and the fat brought a lovely flavour. She also loved the barigoule preparation and cooking, and said it looked ‘stunning‘ on the plate.
Marcus enjoyed the dish and complimented it as a ‘very nicely cooked plate of food’.
Gregg simply said it was ‘yummy‘ and thoroughly enjoyed the dish.
Dessert: Sheeps milk yoghurt parfait coated in strawberry powder, strawberry and mint salasa, elderflower-pickled white strawberries, meringue crumb, lime sable bsicuits, and a strawberry and rum sauce.
Gregg loved the parfait an and said it was creamy and a ‘perfect‘ texture with a lovely coating. He was also impressed with the elderflower-pickled strawberries and said they were very ‘clever‘.
Monica said the biscuits were ‘beautifully made’ and the lime brought a lovely kick. She also said the dish was ‘delicious‘.
Marcus was pleased with the great balance of flavours Exose had brought to the dish. He finished his comments incredibly complimentary of Exose and how well he has performed in the competition.
Starter: Soy and mirin smoked salmon ballotine with crispy salmon skin, cherry tomatoes marinated in dashi vinegar, chilli-flavoured taramasalata, smoked almonds and sorrel served with a dashi-infused tomato essence.
Gregg was impressed with the dish and said it was a ‘great plate‘ and ‘makes a statement‘. As for the flavour, he said he would never have though to put those components together, but Stu had done it so well and it was an ‘incredible dish’.
Marcus said the salmon was cooked ‘beautifully‘ with a great marinade and seasoning. He was very complimentary of Stu’s dish and loved the Asian flavours running through.
Monica loved the flavours and textures of the dish and said it was ‘delicious‘.
Main: Lovage and rosemary-brined guinea fowl, topped with a yeast-hazelnut crumb, soy-glazed guinea fowl thigh, hen-of-the-wood mushrooms, celeriac puree, celeriac barigoule, lovage emulsion and a spiced guinea fowl sauce, garnished with celery micro cress.
Gregg loved Stu’s presentation and said it was ‘interesting’ and looked almost Japanese. He also praised Stu on his sauce, saying it was like a green Thai curry sauce, although had brilliant heat with lots of ginger coming through.
Monica said the guinea fowl was beautifully cooked and the celeriac puree was incredibly smooth. Overall she said it was a ‘delicious plate of food‘.
Marcus was thrilled with the dish and said it was ‘probably one of the best guinea fowl dishes [he’s] ever eaten’. He couldn’t fault this dish and called it ‘absolutely outstanding‘.
Dessert: Cep and milk chocolate cookie, dusted in coffee-cep powder, a milk chocolate and yoghurt cream, a cookie tuille, cep caramel, coffee gel, salted mil ice cream and a coffee and milk foam.
Monica loved Stu’s dessert and said it was rich in flavour and ‘delightful‘. She particularly enjoyed the slight saltiness in the ice cream balancing the flavours.
Gregg called the cep cookie ‘genius‘ and loved the mushroom in the dish.
Marcus thoroughly enjoyed the coffee and was pleased with how the bitter flavours compliment the cep. Additionally, the cep tulle he found fantastic as it added ‘another alternative flavour’. Marcus said to Stu, he ‘couldn’t have finished [his] competition on a better dish‘.
Gregg said the scallops were ‘perfect‘ and the seasoning of salt and roe on the top intensified the salt and fish flavours.
Marcus loved the cream sauce and said the whole dish demonstrated nice cookery.
Monica found the textures of the buckwheat and truffle were a lovely addition, and he whole dish showed great cookery.
Main: Venison loin, roasted in bone marrow and beef fat, grated salt-roasted beetroot and walnuts, caramelised cauliflower puree, pickled cauliflower florets, roasted hen-of-the-woods mushrooms, compressed chicory and roasted hazelnuts served with a beetroot, smoked bone marrow and horseradish sauce, garnished with blue nasturtium leaves.
Marcus was thoroughly impressed with the version and said it was ‘beautifully cooked‘. He also likened the puree to ‘silk’ on the palette. His only critique was that he wasn’t getting enough horseradish flavour coming through.
Monica loved Olivia’s plate of food and said it had been made ‘beautifully‘.
Gregg disagreed with Marcus and said he was getting a horseradish flavour at the end of the sweetness of the sauce, which he found ‘delightful‘.
Dessert: Meadowsweet cake, served with glazed cherries, buttermilk and cherry mousse, cherry gel, meadowsweet foam, crisp out crumble and a buttermilk and yoghurt snow, garnished with Peruvian marigold micro cress.
Gregg called Olivia’s dessert ‘delightful‘ and said he loved the sweet, lightness of the cake followed by the sharpness of the cherry running through.
Monica also enjoyed the cherry ripple running through. She was impressed with the buttermilk and yogurt snow, saying it was a nice surprise on a sweet dessert.
Marcus was pleased with Olivia’s work and said it was ‘a masterclass of dessert cookery’ and the cherries and jam were ‘knockout‘.
Lastly, Monica complimented Olivia’s work in the competition and said it had been great to see her get more comfortable in her own style of cooking.
After careful deliberation, the judges decided the chef who would be crowned MasterChef: The Professionals 2019 Champion was Stu.