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Masterchef


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Jeezy Creezy it was even worse last night. How can people get a fillet of salmon wrong?

It's crazy isn't it? You think the bare minimum you'd aim for with a dish is to actually manage to cook it. Getting the flavourings right, the presentation, coming up with an interesting idea are what you'd expect to be the tricky bits. Just making sure the dish is cooked is the most basic part of the dish. If they can't even cook a piece of salmon what are they doing on the show?

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Well quite.

I mean, the least I would have done, the very least, is ensure the following:

1) Season the salmon, on both sides, and rub a bit of oil on it

2) Get the pan hot, put the salmon in skin side down

3) After a few minutes, turn it over, turn off the heat. Leave.

That should ensure pan-fried salmon is cooked how a restaurant person would like it, i.e. slightly under done. You can't overcook it that way, as you're using residual heat to finish the cooking process. I couldn't believe how flash that woman was trying to be by cooking it "en papillotte", only to completely overcook it.

So that's the first basic dealt with. Then I'd probably just have made a mayo from scratch (demonstrating a key skill), or a hollandaise for the asparagus (again demonstrating a skill, and that you recognise a classic combination). If I think about what I would like to eat with that, some buttered new potatoes would be fine.

That's the most basic thing I would have done. And yet you had people attempting less basic stuff than that, and getting it so, so wrong. Mind boggling.

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I'd cook a tuna pasta bake. Like to see John TOAD gobble that.

Sorry, I'm just bitter, but I have been getting more and more into it when I've had free time to watch all the saved episodes on my sky+.

Good stuff so far and the Indian food looked delish! I may even go to Kazan with my girlfriend ONCE we both have money.

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Yeah, they were clearly struggling to put anyone apart from Paul through. That Craig bloke went through on default, because he made some ok-ish mustardy cabbage (which still looked a bit manky to me). Omelette with Beetroot, Potatoes and (buttered) bread with coriander scattered all over it?! Anyone really want to eat that?

I would like to find out more about the rules, because clearly the ingredients list you hear isn't the full story. Are you allowed unlimited choice of herbs for example? Olives? Anchovies? Because I was immediately thinking I would have made Salad Nicoise, but if you're missing olives you might as well forget it.

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According to the BBC website (http://www.bbc.co.uk/food/tv_and_radio/masterchef/mysterybox.shtml), you also get olive oil, groundnut oil, toasted sesame oil, balsamic vinegar, red wine vinegar, soy sauce, honey, vegetable stock, wine, plain flour, caster sugar, fine sea salt, sea salt flakes, baking powder, icing sugar, two medium eggs, whole milk, double cream, unsalted butter, garlic, onion, potato, bread and/or pastry.

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Actually, I think the show works better with slightly crap people. It's a bit like how X Factor is only enjoyable when you have the people who can't sing at the beginning. Masterchef used to be posh people cooking dinner party food, but now it's a bit more accessible, despite Torode/Wallace's best efforts to irritate.

Exactly. They appear to do very, very little selection before letting people on the show (it must be pretty much a lottery to get chosen). The 3 people you lose after the very first cookoff are almost always complete rubbish, and provide a little comedy value. The other three tend to have one quality person between them, which means by the Thursday you've got four people who have a decent idea what they're doing, and can almost always provide food, even if there are mistakes (no suger in the clafoutis, for example).

From the semis on, you've got all decent people, who tend to do a good job of demonstrating their innate skills as well as what they are learning as the competition goes on.

I think it's very well structured, to be honest.

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With a Leek Exhaust Pipe.

She fell down because she was trying to impress, rather than cooking what she liked. Regardless of the size, if you asked me what I fancied to eat, I don't think I would ever say "Ooh, Black Pudding and Apple, with Leeks and Asparagus!".

I think she might be back if they do one of those 2nd chance shows though, she had "Rags to Riches Story" written all over her, and I think they were actually annoyed not to be able to put her through.

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My God I'm so glad they didn't put Wee Jock Poo Plop McPong through tonight. Get lost with your liver and strawberries!

They've clearly identified a star in the making with Emily, and she demonstrated tonight why I would never win Masterchef - inventiveness. I could never have come up with the food she cooked tonight and she's what, 18? I predict she will win the entire competition and have a TV series 'ere long.

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Oh yeah, I nearly forgot. Steak, Greens and Mash in the Invention Test

Not only steak, greens and mash, but bloody awful steak, greens and mash. Christus, even I could have done better than that.

Emily is a natural. God know how she can just come up with bonkers meals like that on the fly. I don't often envy talent but if I could cook like that I'd be a very happy man.

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Absolutely, I was quite gobsmacked that she was not only coming up with such inventive food, but that it proved edible. Torode and Wallace may be annoying, but they soon spot the fakes, or people who are trying too hard with unusual flavours. They'd soon kick her off if the flavours didn't work.

Her stuff was bordering on art, but I really wanted to eat it too.

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My God I'm so glad they didn't put Wee Jock Poo Plop McPong through tonight. Get lost with your liver and strawberries!

They've clearly identified a star in the making with Emily, and she demonstrated tonight why I would never win Masterchef - inventiveness. I could never have come up with the food she cooked tonight and she's what, 18? I predict she will win the entire competition and have a TV series 'ere long.

Yes, me and the missus didn't like him at all.

That girl was tremendous though. The mud pie managed to avoid being 'novelty' and looked cracking. She also seemed really sweet, albeit a bit, erm.. glossy. I hope she wins the whole thing.

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