A mystery box sealed the fate of another Masterchef favourite last night .
Disappointed to find themselves in the losing team after Wednesday’s King Valley challenge, Georgia, Stephen, Jacqui, Billie, Ashleigh, Matthew and Jamie faced an elimination Mystery Box.
With each box containing scampi, Dijon mustard, mandarin, watercress, fresh horseradish, walnuts, dark chocolate, eggplant and a lamb rack, the contestants had to make the ingredients last across three rounds, with no replenishment of any items.
The first round saw Matthew quick to get started on a pasta dish, while Ashleigh overcommitted herself with a chocolate mousse dome. Stephen decided to play to his strengths and cook a lamb rack. Jacqui went for a chocolate and mandarin fondant.
Georgia’s delicious scampi fritters and Matthew’s scampi linguine won out, sending Stephen, Jacqui, Billie, Ashleigh and Jamie into the second round.
In round two, Billie pulled off an amazing mandarin chocolate ice cream sandwich, while Jamie’s pan-fried scampi was one of the best dishes he had put up to date. Ashleigh was out of sorts and her lack of confidence showed on the plate, with a lacklustre lamb cutlet. Despite his perfect scampi, Stephen’s buerre blanc sauce with mandarin was no good.
Jacqui opted to make mandarin soufflé with chocolate ganache and walnut tuile for round two. While her soufflé rose in the oven, disaster struck when it sank en route to the judges. It was flawed and eggy and sent Jacqui into round three with Stephen and Ashleigh.
With only sweet ingredients left, Stephen set about making a chocolate mousse. Ashleigh cooked a mandarin brûlée, while Jacqui went for an open lasagne with scampi, walnuts and cress oil.
In the tasting, Ashleigh’s mandarin brûlée was applauded, saving her from elimination. The judges liked Stephen’s beautiful, light mousse with a mandarin flavour. Jacqui’s pasta was too thick and her scampi was mushy, and she was eliminated.
Since leaving the MasterChef Australia kitchen, Jacqui has been working at Olivigna Winery in Warrandyte and Piggery Café in Sherbrooke, Victoria. She is also planning to hold dinner events in Melbourne.