MasterChef: The Professionals 2015 round up – week five [with video]

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 15th December 2015

This week on MasterChef: The Professionals 2015, ten chefs were welcomed into knockout week, which, ideally, is an opportunity for Michelin-starred Marcus Wareing and Monica Galetti to get rid of some of the competitors and send only the best through to the semi-finals.

On Wednesday's episode, this decision proved too much for the judges which resulted in an unexpected twist... 

Kicking off the week, all twelve chefs entered the (very cramped) MasterChef kitchen, to show off their skills during an invention test. Given a selection of meat, fish, fruit and vegetables, the chefs were asked to create an outstanding dish... without any modern equipment. chefs

Waving goodbye to their sous vide machines and chemicals, the chefs scrambled to make it straight through to the semi-finals. Coming out top and impressing the judges in this round as equal first place, Bobby with his European style of cooking and Indian flavouring, and Mark, who Gregg thinks 'has the touch and palate of an angel'. Mark, who left both the judges and critics last week in awe, was an obvious choice to go straight through to the semis.

Cooking a venison with black pudding puree, pickled beetroot and, what seemed to be the most popular sauce of the day, oxtail. Bobby, who took up most of the room in the kitchen, presented a pork belly with galangal chilli and lemon grass, black pudding, merguez sausage and le puy lentils drizzled with oxtail sauce to give it body.

Leaving the competition at this stage, private chef Joey, who had previously impressed the judges. Joey dared to go out of her comfort zone by cooking quail with game faggotts, potato croquettes and a quail tea consomme. Unfortunately, the presentation wasn't refined enough for Monica and Gregg was disheartened by a soggy croquette. Also leaving the competition, Josh, the only chef daring to make a dessert during the invention round!

Unfortunately the dish seemed more like a main course; pearl barley rice pudding with saffron, black pepper, peach puree, peaches and the most offensive ingredient of the series, honey comb. The final ten chefs were split in to two groups of five to embark on a new challenge. The chefs would have to work together as a team to make dinner for five diners. They were both given two and a half hours to make a three course meal, before returning to the MasterChef kitchen to cook for Marcus and Monica, fighting in a place in the semi-finals.

The first group consisted of Nick, Mark, Andi, Darren and Dean, who were tasked with cooking for the President of the London Law Society. Mark and Darren took care of the starter, crab tortellini with chilli, lime and lemongrass, a crab biske, pickled vegetables, mango and a crispbread with garlic aioli. 

The main course, poached breast and leg of guineafowl, with a shallot and pancetta croquette was left in the hands of Andi and Dean, leaving Nick alone for the dessert course, cooking a pistachio and olive oil cake with raspberry sorbet. In the MasterChef kitchen, not a single negative comment arose during the tasting. and so Marcus and Monica were faced with a tough decision, concluding that all five produced the best dishes to date in the competition. Not really understanding the concept of a competition, Monica announced that all five chefs would be going through to the semi finals!

The second group got a raw deal in comparison. Bobby, Mark, Gavin, Scott and Danilo were given the same amount of time to produce a three course meal for ex England cricket captain, Mike Gatting, and four of his guests. However, their kitchen was located a short... drive away? Or in Monica's case, a brisk walk.  

After presenting their menu ideas, the chefs were told to rethink the entire thing and refine their dishes. Adding elements as they went along, the guests were given a very mix-matched menu, starting with a light smoked mackerel with tortellini and beetroot, followed by a very heavy beige coloured rabbit cassoulet served with black pudding, white beans, butter beans and parcels made from leftover rabbit leg.

The disappointing dessert left the guests confused, expecting a classic apple crumble, but being presented with a solid panna cotta was not what they were hoping for. Leaving the competition at this stage, Bobby and Gavin. Gavin was questioned for his lamb fondant potato and brasised gem lettuce dish, the dish had no 'wow factor' and left the judges asking if that was enough to keep him in the competition.

Bobby's pancake was not cooked properly in his beef dish, which left a doughy taste in the judges mouths. The beef was cooked well, but the sauce served alongside it was too overpowering. These imperfections helped Monica and Marcus to make their decisions during this round. Through to the semi-finals are eight chefs; Nick, Mark, Scott, Danilo, Andi, Darren, Mark and Dean.

>>> Catch up with more MasterChef blogs here

>>> Read more about Masterchef: The Professionals 2015 here

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 15th December 2015

MasterChef: The Professionals 2015 round up – week five [with video]