Previous Episode: MasterChef Australia Season Four – Italian Immunity Challenge
The dreaded risotto! No one’s been able to master it, EVER on MasterChef. Now, they all have to cook it and depend on it to keep them out of the most humiliating elimination of the season. Who wants to be eliminated in gorgeous Italy?
The contestants get dressed up in chef whites, unusual for a team challenge, before heading to their destination in Parma.
Challenge Brief: This is a 2-day challenge with today determining who will be in what team and who will win that team an advantage. They will be cooking for a special guest today, Gualtiero Marchesi. Today, they have to cook the death dish; the RISOTTO! It will be Maestro Marchesi’s signature risotto, which is more complex than usual.
Conditions: No recipe! They have to go by taste and look of the model dish…and a few hints. There is no time limit- but they will be taking into account the amount of time each contestant needed to make their risotto.
Progress: This is the death dish, so I’m expecting some stress and some tears here! Immediately, they are put off by the amount of ingredients they have- not many! They begin by toasting their rice and Debra is quite cheerful. Ben claims to know the processes he needs to create the risotto. Beau puts the saffron in too early, which could be a problem. He starts it all again.
The contestants find out 20 minutes in that it takes Maestro 20 minutes to cook a risotto. Mindy is scared. It seems many people have decided to do two batches at a time so they have more chance of getting one right. Julia wonders what is wrong with them. Ahh, you’re cooking the death dish!!! That’s like an English student doing a maths exam!
Then comes the gold leaf that they have to place on the risotto. With the wind, it’s not easy. Ben is first up and it is panned for being undercooked and saltless.
Beau is next and he does a little better. Mindy wants to be judged next. If it was creamier, it would be awesome. Deb is next and she is told it’s missing almost everything. Meanwhile, the gold leaf continues to cause havoc.
Andy is next and he’s criticised for being too sweet and undercooked. Julia is next and the gold leaf is everywhere! Again, it’s missing everything but her gold leaf mishap gives Gualtiero some ideas. Kylie’s needs to be creamier but the taste isn’t bad.
Alice is next and is criticised for being chalky. Audra is next and she is given good remarks, but more saffron was needed. Wade is up next. His risotto is praised…but in context, it is only ‘just nicely cooked’.
Result: The five winners of this challenge were… Wade, Audra, Mindy, Kylie and Beau. They will form the red team. The green team consists of Julia, Andy, Alice, Ben and Debra.
Challenge Brief: So, what will they do? They’re cooking for 500 people! Where will they do it? Barilla HQ! They are to take responsibility of three pastas per team. One of the pastas must be a lasagne, one must be vegetarian and one must be seafood. Guido Barilla, chairman of Barilla, will taste their pasta.
Conditions: They have to choose their own captains. Kylie and Andy are captains for their respective teams. 3 hours prep time. As an advantage, the red team get to choose two pastas they want to cook from first. They choose from a batch of six pastas.
Here are the pastas they can cook, and who cooks them.
Penne Rigate: Green
Progress: Here we go. Prior to choosing their pastas, they had to choose their ingredients for their dishes. Alice is in charge of the seafood pasta (Fusilli) and with so many prawns to peel, she gets help from Gary. Debra is doing the lasagne but isn’t happy that they haven’t thought the dish out properly with no one thinking of doing a béchamel sauce. Debra is given that task, but she doesn’t look happy.
The red team have Beau and Wade working on the seafood dish, which is to the envy of Alice. Kylie is asked to write down her Mise en place list. Kylie is doing a béchamel sauce for the red team, and is much more joyful than Debra. Mindy and Audra are working well together and they seem to have a good method. Guido is worried they won’t finish in time and gets Debra to quicken up with her sauces and the vegetables.
The red team need their meat to cook quicker, and luckily the chef has a mincer to their disposal. Meanwhile, Andy is enjoying himself cooking the pasta! Back to the red team and Mindy works on the pesto for their vegetarian dish. They have an hour to go.
Debra is getting annoyed because she wants to grate cheese but Julia wants her to blend it to save time. Beau is cooking up the rest of the Casarecce and Gary gets him to cook it in a pan to conserve flavour. It’s all so technical!
All of a sudden, the crowds come. Service begins and things are just rampant. Audra finds out from Guido that her lasagne is nice. For some reason, Andy discusses the possibility of working together with Ben on a Mexican restaurant. George, Gary and Guido will taste the dishes.
Tasting & Results
Penne Amatriciana (Green, Ben): Gary says it is tasty and Guido is also impressed. George likes the sauce.
Fusilli with Prawns (Green, Alice): They like the pasta and the sauce.
Lasagne (Green, Debra & Julia): Guido wants more taste but Gary loves it, calling it fresh.
Then, all of a sudden, more than 200 EXTRA people come in, and they need to come up with another dish quick!
Mindy decides to do a cheese and black pepper pasta.
Casarecce (Red, Beau & Wade): They love the flavour and Guido loves it.
Lasagne with Pork Sausage (Red, Audra): Guido calls it a classic lasagne dish. Gary loves it and George is in love with the sausage.
Farfalle (Red, Mindy): Guido likes the addition of simple ingredients.
Service then finishes, and all that waits are the results.
Result: The team who will head into elimination tomorrow is… The Green Team. That means Debra, Julia, Ben, Andy or Alice will be leaving tomorrow.
MasterChef Australia next airs Jul 12 at 7PM on TEN.