Celebrity MasterChef review: Nadia Forde exits after being left shell-shocked
In the latest episode, the amateur chefs were faced with a question - where is the beef?
Nadia Forde has become the latest contestant to exit Celebrity Masterchef. Photograph: TV3
Some people see food and eat it, others seafood and panic. At least that seemed to be the case as Nadia Forde became the latest contestant to leave TV3’s Celebrity MasterChef kitchen, having gone to the larder in search of a nice familiar piece of cod and come away instead with some very alien oysters.
Prompted by judge Daniel Clifford to cook the oysters in tempura batter as part of a Japanese-inspired sushi and seafood platter, Forde “automatically thought of deep-frying the shell”, before rethinking her approach and performing an interesting routine with an oyster knife to a soundtrack of muttered swears and prayers.
The model and TV presenter, who must now be wishing that she had gleaned a few pearls of wisdom when she was whiling away the after-school hours in her Italian grandparents’ fish-and-chip shop, took her dismissal like a champion.
“I feel like I deserve to go,” she said, sounding like she’d just won her first Michelin star.
Forde wasn’t the only contestant pushing the boundaries of deep-frying last night though.
There’s little that hasn’t been dipped in batter, deep-fried and enjoyed, but singer-songwriter Mundy’s deep-fried wood pigeon - dubbed a KFP, or Kentucky Fried Pigeon, by an incredulous co-judge Robin Gill - won’t be making it onto any chip shop menus any time soon.
But at least Mundy knew (vaguely) what he was dealing with in the mystery box challenge, unlike most of his rivals, who were blithely marinating, sauteing, stuffing and otherwise torturing ostrich fillets while under the impression that they were beef.
“I’m almost scared of that one,” said Gill, when presented with GAA star Oisin McConville’s ostrich, now resembling a grey, extruded pulp, garnished with an orange segment and a pile of beetroot spirals.
There was better news for actor and TV presenter Simon Delaney, whose beetroot and ostrich puff pastry pie was so good Daniel Clifford claimed it “for his dinner”.
To be fair, there wasn’t much that was edible on offer in the MasterChef kitchen that day.
Putting mystery meats behind them, the masters of the kitchen tackled seafood in a challenge designed to highlight “the fruits of the Irish Sea”.
Singer Niamh Kavanagh’s ability to turn out “restaurant-worthy” dishes shone through, delivering a roast monkfish with a chorizo crust and borlotti beans.
Singer Samantha Mumba fought back after a bruising encounter with the wood pigeon by plating up a dramatic New Orleans-inspired dish of voodoo prawns on black rice.
Weather presenter Evelyn Cusack looked on the verge of a tsunami of tears as she battled on all fronts with her roast hake and greens.
Meanwhile, Mundy continued to impress with his epic tacos.
“I’m actually learning from you right now,” said an impressed Daniel Clifford.
Simon Delaney got a telling off for not using the mussel-cooking liquor in his dish, while Amnesty’s Colm O’Gorman turned in an accomplished impression of UK chef Glynn Purnell’s signature dish of monkfish masala.
A poorly-seasoned hake and samphire dish left Oisin McConville on the sidelines alongside a clearly delighted Nadia Forde, who had seen the exit and was about to bolt.
“I just can’t wait to got out and ring Darina,” the GAA star said when he got the nod to return to the kitchen.
No, not that Darina. The other one, his wife Darina, who has been coaching the newcomer in the kitchen.
Simon Delaney had the last word after a somewhat frazzled session in the MasterChef kitchen: “I’m going to go home and hit the books tonight. I might deep-fry a book, see how that comes out.”