Top 10 week was drawing to a close and Billie, Julie, Mindy and Daniel were thrilled to be safe from elimination, while Montana, Keyma, Alvin, Tommy, Sarah and Aldo battled it out for their place in the competition.
Jock presented three cloches under which sat three ingredients – pumpkin, snapper and chicken, and each contestant needed to select one ingredient and feature it in a dish across a potential three rounds.
After a 30 minute cook in the first round, the judges announced Keyma as the first contestant safe from round two, and Sarah was awarded victory with a dish that had the best dimensions of flavour. Tommy, Aldo, Alvin and Montana were sent into round two where they had 45 minutes to create another dish using their feature ingredient.
When it was time to taste the round two dishes, Andy said Aldo’s fish was perfect, and his broth, while subtle was full of flavour. Alvin’s chicken thigh curry with sambal and coconut rice was good, and the thigh was cooked perfectly, while Jock said Montana’s cinnamon parfait with chicken fat caramel was a clever dish. Tommy’s heart sunk when the judges found fish scales in his Vietnamese fish broth with snapper wings. Aldo and Montana were awarded top honours, while Tommy and Alvin found themselves in the final round.
Tommy and Alvin had the remainder of their feature ingredient and 60 minutes on the clock. Alvin knew it would be a tough cook up against his friend Tommy, so he decided to reimagine his famous Drunken Chicken from MasterChef Australia Season 2. Tommy decided to prepare a special dish from his mum’s childhood, fish in a caramelised sauce with a crispy rice cake and spring onion oil.
Tommy’s dish was first to the tasting room, and the judges said the fish was cooked beautifully and the broth was delicious with a lot of body, but Jock said the problem lay in the rice cakes that were slightly undercooked. Alvin was very proud of his Drunken Chicken 2.0, and Andy and Jock said it was a spectacular plate of food, it was perfect, moist and tender.
With Alvin producing the dish of a lifetime, it was no surprise when Tommy was announced as the fifteenth contestant eliminated from the MasterChef kitchen.