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Lost in sugary translation – MasterChef SA

17 March 2022
An air of artistry and mystery loomed in the air during the eleventh episode.
masterchef sa

Image: Charlie Sperring

by Jan-Hendrik Botha

While some viewers showed off their homemade creations online, the pressure was about to build up again in the MasterChef SA kitchen.

Our contestants were confused to see Gregory Czarnecki missing from the kitchen.

But what is the MasterChef SA kitchen without a twist: our "guest" judge for episode eleven, a man of many surprises who worked in Michelin star restaurants across Europe, was indeed judge Greg. 

Of course, Greg is a multi-award-winning chef and often referred to as “the Picasso of the plate” – therefore, what better person to nominate as guest judge to challenge our contestants? 

For this challenge, our contestants had to pay respect to the humble tomato. Greg showed them his tomato masterpiece, our contestants were divided into two teams of five for a sixty-minute timed relay challenge. 

Each team, red and blue, had to choose a team leader, and that team leader had to choose a deputy to assist them.

The red team consisted of Tarryn (team leader), Andriette, Charmaine, Dr Harri (deputy), and S’li, while the blue team consisted of Onti,(team leader), LuyandaSims, Shawn (deputy), and Tembisa

Furthermore, each team was divided into two smaller groups: one team consisted of three contestants responsible for the main course, and another team consisted of two contestants responsible for dessert. 

One by one, the teams in charge of the main course relayed in twenty-minute intervals while the dessert teams had to relay every thirty minutes. Each team member had one minute to hand over and brief the next team member.

With the first handover, both S’li (red team) and Tembisa (blue team) seemed baffled, as their fellow contestants raced against the clock to brief them.

But it was the blue team that was completely lost in translation. Who knew that an air fryer would take centre stage in the MasterChef SA kitchen – but it's a handy appliance if you only have twenty minutes to complete your part of an haute cuisine dessert. However, while Shawn took full advantage of this appliance, he left Sims looking like a deer caught in headlights, and it seemed to go downhill from here. 

On mains back at the red team, Charmaine and Luyanda took over from Tembisa and S’li. And though team leader Tarryn was worried about Charmaine taking too long with her pasta, she knocked it out of the park after all. 

Then it was time for the judges’ critique, leaving us on the edge of our seats – a moment made even more suspenseful by the fact that the two teams were competing for immunity. At least it meant no one was going home after the relay. 

The question on everyone's lips: Who can be blamed for a flopped dish? Did Onti incorrectly brief Tembisa, or did Tembisa misinform Charmaine? Did Tarryn miscommunicate with S’li, or S'li with Luyanda? Did Dr Harri and Andriette travel like two trains in opposite directions or did Sims misinterpret Shawn’s brief?

According to Justine, “communication is everything in this challenge”. Zola said, “Not one team member can be blamed as it’s a relay: everyone has equal responsibility.”

Though both teams’ mains impressed the judges, their dessert let the blue team down. 

According to the judges, the blue team got lost along the way. Their basil ice cream had a lovely flavour, however, the sticky sugar substance below the ice cream was too sweet and crystallised...to a point where it got stuck in their teeth and was very unpleasant to the palate. 

Therefore, the red team walked away with immunity, while the blue team will compete against each other in the next challenge.

We spoke to our contestants about being in the top 10. Find out what they had to say below:

Do you have a favourite tomato dish? Let us know on FacebookTwitter, and Instagram by using #MasterChefSA. Remember to watch MasterChef SA every Monday to Thursday at 18:00 on M-Net channel 101. In case you missed the latest episode, catch up with DStv using your connected device.