Tonight, contestants entered a beautiful forest scene in the Dessert Masters kitchen for a semi-final that would leave only three grand finalists remaining. The contestants had to take inspiration from the forest around them and bring the judges a sweet dish inspired by nature in only three hours.
Reynold chose to create a chocolate log in a rainforest. He knew his biggest challenge was balancing the fragrant flavours he was working with and courageously, he recreated the sugar tuilles from the Martin Benn pressure test that sent him home from the semi-final in MasterChef season 12. At tasting, Amaury thought Reynold hit the visual and flavour brief.
Jess’s ambitious concept was a realistic looking bonsai tree with flavours that reflected the Japanese theme: matcha, yuzu and black sesame. She worked at a frantic pace and the final dish was nothing short of incredible. The judges complimented the light sponge and the contrast of texture with the black sesame and the yuzu mousse.
Gareth chose to create a riverbed scene with stones, twigs and soil. He took a significant risk with the flavour profile using two savoury ingredients, truffle and Jerusalem artichoke.Amaury wasn’t sold on the flavours but Gareth was confident his sweet elements would offset the earthiness. Upon tasting, Amaury liked the visual impact of the dish, but both he and Mel felt it was still very savoury, leaving Gareth at risk of elimination.
Kay-Lene made a dish inspired by the changing seasons playing on the imagery of white snow melting away. Not wanting to take any risks tonight, she worked hard to get all her elements perfectly finished. When tasting, Amaury thought the dish was beautifully crafted, but looked and tasted dry. As delicious as the elements were, the ratios of dry to moist weren’t right, which ultimately led to Kay-Lene’s elimination from the competition.
Kirsten set out to create her most ambitious dish yet; involving a chocolate and passionfruit entremet surrounded by a chocolate birdcage sculpture. With just two minutes to go she moved her assembled birdcage onto the plate, but it hit the side of the bench and collapsed before her eyes. All contestants ran to comfort an understandably emotional Kirsten who knew that this mistake could cost her a place in the competition. Tasting the entremets, the judges complemented her perfect glaze and neat, stacked layers. The flavours were well balanced but given the three-hour challenge, the entremet without the birdcage was not enough, unfortunately sending the chocolate queen home.