Recap: My Kitchen Rules - 27 May 2014

Tonight’s episode takes us to Adelaide, South Australia, to “Sage”, the instant restaurant of Bree and Jessica. This is the 5th instant restaurant of Round 2.

Bree and Jessica are both married mothers of two daughters. They describe themselves as “… busy Mums who love to get out and savour Australia’s produce.” They say that as Mums, they feel they put themselves last; this is their chance to follow their dreams and spread their wings a bit. People think they are sweet and nice, but they feel they are a force to be reckoned with.

Their combined dream is to take people locally around their State, gathering foods and finishing off with a cooking lesson.

Given their parting words last night were to under-promise and over-deliver, it will be interesting to see what they come up with.
• David and Corinne note that they are Mums who play their cards close to their chests so they have no idea what they’ll do tonight … although David adds he expects it will likely be a nicely cooked, homely dinner.
• Uel and Shannelle say these two are tight-lipped – they don’t even know what kind of food they will be cooking.

En route to the supermarket, Bree and Jessica explain that they are opting for a fine dining menu, suggesting that the guests might be surprised at this, given that they are housewives.

A series of small dramas emerge which are easily resolved:
• Japanese scallops are purchased as scallops as local ones are not available;
• In setting the table, one entrée fork is missing; however a workaround is identified and nobody even notices; and
• When preparing the meat, the cooks realise that they can only find two, of the four needed, pieces of meat. As it turns out, they only ever purchased two pieces. They decide to work with smaller portions and move on.

The guests are dressed in formal wear this evening.

Upon entering the room and being seated:
• Harry notes that the room is dressed elegantly;
• Corinne says the room is under-dressed but ‘let’s see what the girls put up’;
• Christo observes that everyone is in a good, happy mood;
• Uel states that David and Corinne aren’t at the bottom of the leadership board anymore, but they’re not at the top of the friendship board either;
• Jess asks what the little fork is for – Shannelle replies that it could be for a small entrée; Bianca suggests it could be for a chicken dish.

Bree welcomes the guests to their instant restaurant and explains that they are just ordinary wives, and Mums, who wanted to do fine dining as something different from their lives.

Upon their arrival, Manu states that these ladies keep their cards close to their chest; and Pete observes it’s lovely to see the men in tuxes and the ladies dressed up, saying he’s sure they’re in for an interesting evening.

In sighting the menu, Thalia comments that she can’t understand half of the words on it; Bianca adds that they are not used to fine dining. Jess tells us that she loves scallops, and just so long as they’re not over-cooked she’ll be happy. Uel says he doesn’t know what the dressing is. Manu explains what the menu descriptions mean to the contestants.

The smoke alarm goes off, which gets Harry rather excited. He quickly explains that he did not mean for his reaction to come across negatively as David was suggesting.

Entrée: Scallops with Wilted Bitter Greens and Stilton Dressing
• Christo observes that, although the girls seem flustered, every single plate looks perfect.
• Thalia notes that the Mums look nervous, and are clenching onto each other.
• Bree says she is worried that the judges might think it’s the worst combination in the universe.
• After sampling the entrée, Manu asks the ladies if this is what they call fine dining food – they nod – he smiles, and says he does too.
• Pete says that they’ve been quiet so far in the instant restaurants and he wasn’t expecting this … the best dish of the competition so far.
• Bree says she is speechless – she can’t describe the feeling now.
• Christo observes there is complete silence around the table, with people just savouring the moment.
• Bianca is surprised that the dressing is not overpowering, nor strong – it’s delicious.
• Felix thinks the dish is awesome.
• Uel says the sauce tastes like yoghurt, and brings back memories.
• Harry observes that the fellow contestants have been converted from not liking blue cheese to loving it.
• Jess says the bitterness of the veges is too much for her.
• David comments that the dish is beautiful.
• Corinne says the flavour is really good.
• Thalia and Bianca are both amazed at the turnaround in David’s attitude [he doesn’t normally like anything]. Christo concludes that because David’s now safe from elimination he doesn’t need to put a negative spin on everything.

In between the Entrée and Main being served, attention turns to Felix and Harry, who are discussing Harry’s and Christo’s dinner the previous evening. Felix suggests to Harry that his biggest mistake was not going with his instincts. Harry responds that for him and Christo to proceed further in this competition, someone would have to fail or not do very well … when talking to the camera, Felix suddenly realises that Harry was directing that comment towards him and Jess, who are the only remaining contestants from this round left to cook.

The camera focuses in on the kitchen and the drama ensuing as to whether the meat will be medium rare or not … but there’s no drama in this kitchen; all is going exceedingly well.

Back at the dinner table, discussion turns to the Main, where nobody seems to know what it means. Jess’ guess is closest, to which she adds “Putting a fancy word in front of something doesn’t make it fine dining.”

Main: Salt Baked Chateaubriand with Chervil Béarnaise and Pommes Frites
• Jess gives us her usual negative spin on things by describing the Main as “… looks basic, just steak and chips.”
• Harry and Christo swap plates, as Christo wants a larger piece of meat and Harry more chips … a move Harry later regrets.
• Pete says, “This is not what I was expecting … delicious! Absolutely delicious.” He adds that the salad is fresh and acidic and the chips crispy … he has enjoyed every bit of it.
• Manu says the technique used is magical because the meat is not only tender, but the flavour is unbelievable. However, add that the Béarnaise is not perfect as it should be thicker … but in mixing it with the beef it is to die for, and he is hoping for a wicked dessert.
• Bree responds that to get this sort of validation from chefs who know what they’re doing is amazing; that they realise that they do deserve to be here.
• Bianca observes that these ladies are their biggest competition at the moment.
• Christo says his knife just glides through the meat perfectly.
• Thalia can’t see the herbs but she can taste them.
• David feels his steak was too small – Corinne’s was larger.
• Uel says that was Yum-aye.
• David quotes back what Bree said about them being ordinary Mums cooking ordinary food, rolls his eyes and retorts “Yeah right.”

Discussion turns to dessert:
• Harry suggests that after the success of the last two dishes, he has no doubt this will be unbelievable.
• Bianca wonders whether dessert will comprise individual cakes or a slice of cake.
• David thinks the cake might be shaped like a mousse.

Dessert: Raspberry Mousse Cake with Macerated Berries and Sugar Crusted Almonds
• Shannelle observes to Uel that the cake is huge.
• Bianca whispers to Thalia that it smells good.
• Upon tasting, Manu says he loves the raspberry mousse – it is fluffy, light, and melts in the mouth straight away. But the cake is far too dense.
• Pete asks if this is how the ladies normally make the dessert? Jessica responds that they usually use sponge … “Why the change?” Pete asks. Jessica says raspberries and chocolate go well together, so they took a punt. Pete is not impressed, saying it feels like there are two desserts on the plate that don’t go well together, which is a shame as he wanted it to be a hat trick tonight. Despite that feedback, he tells the ladies not to be disheartened as it has been a great night. Back in the kitchen, Jessica and Bree recognise it was a poor decision taking that gamble.
• Felix says he can’t put his finger on what is wrong with the mud cake, so “has a few more goes” to see if he can “nut it out.”
• Jess finds the bottom part too dense and hard to swallow.
• Shannelle notes that some people loved the mousse, some the cake.
• David says he loved the dish, and thought the almonds were a great addition.
• At this point, everyone is thinking they can see through David – he’s safe from elimination, so his strategy has changed.

Guest Scores:
• Christo and Harry: 8/10
• Uel and Shannelle*: 8/10
• David and Corinne: 9/10
• Jess and Felix: 8/10
• Thalia and Bianca: 8/10
• Guest Total: 41/50

* Shannelle added this has been the best restaurant so far

Judges’ Scores:
• Entrée Manu 10/10
• Main Manu 9/10
• Dessert Manu 5/10
• Entrée Pete 10/10
• Main Pete 10/10
• Dessert Pete 5/10

• GRAND TOTAL: 90/100

Tonight’s efforts see Bree and Jessica claim first place on the Leaderboard.

Leaderboard – With just one instant restaurant to go:

• Bree and Jessica: 90
• Bianca and Thalia: 85
• Channelle and Uel: 53
• Corinne and David: 46
• Christo and Harry: 44

Next up:
Jess and Felix, Western Australia
… Given Jess’ negativity towards other contestants’ efforts throughout the competition, it will be interesting to see how her own cooking compares

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About the author

Regan is one of the co-founders of Throng Media.
If they're on, I'm usually watching Game of Thrones, The Walking Dead, 24, Battlestar Galactica, The X Factor, Survivor, House of Cards, Mad Men and the NRL.
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  • roger

    Love it. Thanks Tania! I don’t have time to watch this show so I hope you keep recapping 🙂