I was rooting for you! We were all rooting for you!
This recap is shop bought.
A Two Course Race
This week’s quarterfinal judging table was made up of three previous winners: Kenny Tutt, Tomasina “Wahaca” Miers and Saliha Mahmood-Ahmed
The two course structure of the quarterfinal did mean that Forest would be forced to cook his first savoury dish of the competition – it usually works the other way around (Omar, you better cook a dessert of your own volition soon or they’re going to throw you into the pastry section of a professional restaurant and you will die.)
For his savoury debut, Forest was cooking a Hong Kong favourite: Lobster Yi Mein, a celebratory dish that when served on birthdays is referred to as Longevity Noodles. This would sadly not be the case for Forest
I don’t like that we’ve reached a point of MasterChef where “the noodles are shop bought” is a criticism but when said noodles are most of the dish, perhaps you should have made your own noodles, and certainly not helping matters was the fact Omar was also in the kitchen making his own noodles for his chicken and mushroom ramen dish
and Saliha made sure to fawn over the perfection of his noodles, not once but twice
please stop, Forest and his noodle wheel are already dead
now, there is no actual footage of Omar making said noodles so I can only imagine it involved witchcraft and human sacrifice.
There was still an iota of hope that Forest could claw back a few points with a dessert given that he’s been riding high on those successes since episode 1 – these hopes promptly when up in
flames a light drizzle of shop bought balsamic glaze
and it was not getting better as Kenny Tutt said this
before they hard cut to Forest constructing Pride Rock out of a paper-thin shard of meringue and macerated strawberries
I feel like I’ve fallen back into 2012 – where deconstructed desserts ought to stay! The biggest problem with it is the complete lack of cream, which was an odd omission given that the average Eton Mess is about 70% whipped cream and the single quenelle of ice cream wasn’t going to do much, except potentially save John Torode from turning inside out after he took an entire mouthful of the balsamic glaze
and that’s when I knew that My Boy™ was doomed and we’d never get a finalist’s family and friends VT involving his adorable dog
and his boyfriend of course. But mostly the dog.
Omar was steadfastly refusing the siren song of a deconstructed cheesecake by preceding his Ramen with his take on Prawn Toast that was being served on Brioche instead of white bread, imaginably because Anurag was use it all to make a Scooby Doo style sandwich
but honestly, this Brioche Prawn Toast might be the MasterChef dish I have most wanted to eat
the man’s a genius and I think we might have stop him before he realises how powerful he is and plots world domination. It was rave reviews all around, with Tomasina threatening to go the full Misery
I’m your number one fan.
Anurag was also forgoing a dessert, opening his menu up with the popular Indian street food, Pakoras. His version having the pakora mixture sandwiched between two slices of white bread before being deep-fried for what Saliha called “a sandwich on steroids”
the fact it’s served like a fancy Ploughman’s Lunch is a really fun touch and made the whole thing very inviting and another hit for Anurag – so it was a little disappointing that his Chicken Makhani didn’t hit quite reach the same lofty high
the curry sauce tasted great, or at least it did to everyone except Saliha, but his chicken was quite tough. I think my biggest issue would have been the fact the menu said “Onion Rings” and what they got were rings of pickled onions and not deep-fried onion rings
but that’s just me.
Lastly we have Adam who was opening his menu with a main course of Spanish Cod Stew
I am as surprised as you are that John was not smashing the kitchen to pieces in search of a dollop of Aioli given that seems to be his thing when anyone mentions Spain. The dish got a tepid reception, being described as “perfectly acceptable pub grub” which would have been a compliment 10 odd years ago, but Saliha said it with such derision you would think she was actively campaigning to burn every pub in Britain down.
Seeing us out was Adam’s Lemon Tart dessert which almost came covered in a good 6 inch layer of icing sugar as Adam’s idea of gently dusting it was to just stick his finger into the sieve and wiggle it around, leading to my favourite no context MasterChef screenshot of all time
meanwhile John stood silently beside Gregg looking like a man that’s counting down the days to the Professional series so he can take some time off
to be fair, I think if I had been hosting the same show for almost 20 years I might be peeling my own skin off too.
Back to Adam’s dessert and everyone trying their best to not ask why his entire index finger was covered in white powder
it’s a good Lemon Meringue Tart, the balance of sweet and sour being spot on – Kenny said the baked fig wasn’t necessary but I disagree, I think it was a clever extra addition and I don’t think you should look a gift baked fig in the mouth.
A Quarterfinal Dish Ranking
1. Prawn Toast To End All Prawn Toast
2. The Arnold Schwarzenegger of Sandwiches
3. Bespoke Handcrafted Ramen Noodles
4. THE FIG WAS NECESSARY
5. The Red Lion’s Specials Menu
6. The Onion Ring Deception
7. Build Your Own Eton Mess
8. The Lobster Deserved Better
Well, this was certainly a wild episode – Omar was the clear winner with not a single foot wrong and despite coming into the round feeling like a surefire Anurag, Omar and Forest advancement… Forest just imploded and Adam didn’t do too badly at all and so Forest was eliminated
there’s always Bake Off?
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