it was a a unique three-round elimination challenge titled, ‘How far can your fish go?’that saw Western Australia’s Nicoleembark on a strategy that was met with concern and apprehension from both the MasterChef judges and contestants.
Contestants were greeted by a whole snapper and the losing team from last night’s off-site team service challenge were tasked to use just the one fish to cook in up to three rounds.
Others strategised about how best to use the fish to impress the judges, while conscious of keeping something up their sleeve in the event they had to cook again. Nicole chose to roll the dice and ignored the MasterChef judges’ sage advice to save a small portion, just in case. Nicole cooked a whole Chinese style pan-fried snapper but concerned the tail of the fish was raw, Nicole doused it with boiling hot oil before serving it.
The judges were quick to point out that no one has ever risked it all like this in a MasterChef elimination.
While the judges applauded her dish’s classic flavour, in the end it was the use of the hot oil dressing that proved Nicole’s undoing. The oil had taken all the crunch and crispiness away, leaving the skin’s texture too elastic. Despite this, Nicole was adamant that she had done her best and would not change a thing.
In an elimination round that boasted some outstanding dishes, Tash, Emily, Laura, Rachael and Amy were announced as the first round’s top five cooks, instantly sending Nicole into the second cook off. But with no fish left to use in the challenge, Nicole was left with no choice but to depart the MasterChef kitchen.
Since returning to Perth, Nicole has started her own food blog www.nicolesmagicspatula.com, and is now catering large events for friends.
Masterchef airs 7:30 Tonight on Ten