Tuesday was the second day of this week’s Celebrity Masterchef with the 4 celebrities: George Layton, Leila Rouass, Emma Kennedy and Gareth Gates. They were given a mystery mass catering challenge and whisked away in taxis to The Royal Holloway University in London. Their task was to prepare a lunch and mass cater for the students. It was girls VS boys as Leila and Emma were a team as were Gareth and George (unfortunately) they were expected to make 40 portions of a main course and 40 of a dessert of their choice.
In charge of the kitchen was Karen Veleho. The teams had 2.5 hours to cook their 2 course meal. The selected ingredients included: lamb, aubergines, leeks, potatoes, herbs & spices, apples and plums.
The pressure is on
Gareth and George were under huge amounts of pressure to get their dishes in the oven within the hour. Preparation was the key and it had to happen fast! George set to chopping the vegetables for their stew while Gareth took charge with cutting up the bread for their bread and butter pudding asking George to make the custard. The issue was that they didn’t really seem to know who was in charge and it really let them down. Gareth began the vegetarian lasagne he stated “I’m used to making little foods that taste great; this is very different we’ve just been throwing it in the pan.”
Meanwhile Leila and Emma had nearly finished all their preparation and were onto flavouring their chicken. Emma was streets ahead with her dessert and was relieved that she’d been given crumble stating “between you and me it’s the only pudding we know how to make!” I had to laugh when Emma said to Gregg Wallace “Gregg what do you do with your plums?” he just looked at her in utter horror!
By this time 90 minutes were gone. George was nowhere near ready with his bread and butter pudding. He was critacised by John for his messy presentation. At long last his dessert was finished. When taking it out the oven Gareth uttered the famous last words of “Mate watch you don’t spill it….oh he’s spilt it!!”
Gareth was seriously running behind saying “I’m in major trouble I need to get my lasagne in NOW or we’re stuffed” John was worried about the portions telling him “there’s no way there’s 40 portions of lasagne there” to which Gareth replied “Well I’m hoping that there is !” with no time to spare, quickly thinking on his feet Gareth sensibly bulked out the sauce with beans. Greg was concerned to why there was no cheese, but any Gareth Gates fan will know that Gareth is VERY allergic to it !
With 15 minutes until service began things were looking bad for both teams. Emma’s curry was far too hot according to Gregg. Gareth was extremely frustrated and said to George “That’s not enough mash!! And it’s lumpy!!” he really wasn’t happy and later declared “This is the worst mash I have ever seen in my life!!”
All the food was out on time (luckily) Emma and Leila’s Moroccan chicken with couscous looked very presentable, as did the vegetarian option of chick pea curry served with rice. The dish went down an absolute storm. Gregg and John liked the chicken curry. John said it was “Wonderfully moist and nice and spicy” but said the couscous was AWFUL. The vegetarian dish was also decent and described as “moreish with a nice bit of spice, not a bad job actually”
Gareth and George didn’t do so well (much to my disappointment, but not to my surprise) they probably should have been more careful with their portion sizes during food service. Gregg wasn’t happy with George’s mashed potato saying “The mash isn’t mashed it’s partly crushed and partly boiled potatoes” the meat was a bit dry and the sauce should have been thicker. The vegetarian dish was rather poor and was described as “not good, it could have been a lot more saucy and cheesy.”
The girls made a great plum crumble and custard which went down very well, while the boys made a bread and butter pudding with cream which was criticised for not being sweet enough with a back taste of egg however, the raisins gave it depth.
The girls clearly won that round hands down and Leila came out of her shell. Emma was a really willing sous chef, meaning that the two of them worked brilliantly together. Gareth and George suffered as they didn’t really work as a team as they should have done. Gareth stated “Today was hard I thought, we had our ups and downs however, by the end we managed to pull it together by the skin of our teeth.”
Tomorrow we lose a contestant, their culinary dream will be over. I’m praying that it will be George as so far he has been the weakest of the 3!