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What we learnt from week five of MasterChef: The Professionals 2017

What we learnt from week five of MasterChef: The Professionals 2017

by Great British Chefs 08 December 2017

The heats are over – now it’s time for the serious cooking to begin. See how the semi-finalists got on and how you can avoid the same mistakes they made, with a quote from Marcus himself.

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The competition’s heating up now! With just the quarter-finalists left, the pressure is on for every chef in the MasterChef kitchen to produce plate after plate of fantastic food that’s worthy of a Michelin star. Unfortunately, this isn’t always the case – plans can go wrong, ideas don’t always work and the steely stare of Marcus combined with the raised eyebrows of Monica can make even the most confident of chefs turn to jelly. But along with the mishaps, there were some seriously impressive dishes, too. Take a look at some of this week’s highlights below.

Get your timings right

Sous vide can be a lifesaver in a timed cooking competition, as you can leave something to gently poach in the water bath safe in the knowledge that it’ll come out perfectly cooked. Or that’s what poor Ryan thought. He got the timings all wrong for his sous vide sea bass, which unfortunately left him with a raw bit of fish for the judges. A schoolboy error that came down to not practising the dish enough.

Marcus said: 'Such a shame to see Ryan go last night. A classically styled chef not wholly familiar with sous videing a piece of fish like this. The additional layer of courgette altered the weight, meaning it needed much longer in the water bath and was heavily undercooked. Always take into consideration the weight of the fish you are cooking with and be sure to test it with a knife before plating up. If the knife glides through, the fish is cooked. If there's any tension, it's not done. What a beautifully presented dish though! Hats off to Ryan!'

Raw vegan desserts can work

Matt has been one chef in the competition that’s impressed with nearly every dish, and his unusual dessert definitely put a smile on Monica and Gregg’s faces. It was raw, vegan and used ingredients like almond milk and maple syrup – things that are usually found in a trendy plant-based café rather than a professional cooking competition. Marcus seemed less impressed, noting the texture was a bit dense, but overall it proved that out-of-the-box thinking can win you major (raw, vegan) brownie points.

Make sure there’s enough on your plate

Chris’ quail dish looked nice enough, apart from the distinct lack of quail. It’s a small bird as it is, so you want to include the whole thing on the plate if it’s a main course. It meant Chris lost his place in the knockout round, and unfortunately marked the end of the competition for him.

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