It is only day three in Japan and the top nine contestants have been inspired by the local food culture and cooking trends of Tokyo.
Last Night, Sarah, a 25-year-old risk analyst from Sydney, went one step further by being awarded an immunity pin in a challenge set at Mount Fuji.
After beating fellow contestant Ben in the first round cook, Sarah and Karlie had 60 minutes to create a dish which celebrated tea.
In the final tasting, Matt commented that Karlie’s tea-poached chicken with charred vegetables and tea broth was an amazingly beautiful dish. Gary added he wanted the rest of his life to be filled with dishes like that.
It seemed impossible that a dish could receive higher praise, but Sarah’s tea-braised pork belly with mushrooms, daikon and bean curd did just that. George said it was days like this he was grateful to be alive.
Unable to fault a single element on either dish, Gary said it came down to which dish evoked an emotional response from all three judges – and Sarah was awarded tonight’s immunity pin.
Japan Week continues tonight, as the bright lights of Shinjuku play host to a jammed-packed team challenge. On Thursday, one contestant will leave the competition after an elimination challenge inspired by the historic Akagi Shrine in the heart of Tokyo.
Japan Week wraps at the special time of 7.30pm Friday with a remarkable MasterClass on the hilltop of Tateyama Castle with Michelin star and third-generation sushi chef Kagehisa Imada.