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Does anyone else watch "Master Chef UK, The Professionals" on BBC-America?

Caroline1 Jul 28, 2013 01:13 PM

In my area it's on at very inconvenient times so I record to watch at leisure, but it is now one of my all time favorite cooking shows. To my great amazement, IT'S ABOUT COOKING...!!! Food or Cooking Channels would never carry such a literate cooking show! <sigh>

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  1. Kajikit RE: Caroline1 Jul 28, 2013 03:27 PM

    I made a thread about this last month when they started showing season 5. We taped it every morning to watch at our leisure... alas they only showed two seasons then started repeating themselves so our fun is over, but it was great while it lasted!

    1. w
      wattacetti RE: Caroline1 Jul 28, 2013 04:09 PM

      I have been watching The Professionals, though through alternate means. Did you catch the peaches and lentils creation yet?

      1 Reply
      1. re: wattacetti
        Caroline1 RE: wattacetti Jul 28, 2013 04:31 PM

        Not yet, but I have my VCR set in capture mode for all upcoming episodes, so here's hoping I'm not too late to the ball!

      2. sockii RE: Caroline1 Jul 28, 2013 05:55 PM

        I am, and I love it! So wonderful to see a show actually about, you know, COOKING.

        1. Shrinkrap RE: Caroline1 Jul 28, 2013 07:39 PM

          I saw it once ( I think. I guess there is more than one Masterchef) and enjoyed it, but can't seem to find it again. Gonna search right now.

          Okay, I found the wrong one. It was definitely not this one.

          1. Caroline1 RE: Caroline1 Jul 28, 2013 09:15 PM




            1 Reply
            1. re: Caroline1
              Shrinkrap RE: Caroline1 Jul 28, 2013 09:46 PM

              Thank you!

            2. p
              pine time RE: Caroline1 Jul 29, 2013 07:34 AM

              Yup, discovered it on BBC America about a month ago. Love the calm demeanor of everyone involved, contestants and judges. Good cooking techniques, respectful of the food and each other, judging that gives both positives and negatives--what a concept!

              1. k
                ksbee RE: Caroline1 Jul 30, 2013 02:00 PM

                We, too, found it by accident and love it. My DVR didn't get the last two episodes of the 2011 series, and I just hate not knowing who won. I checked all of the BBC shows available on Amazon, but to no avail. Does anyone know if they are available anywhere?

                1. Coogles RE: Caroline1 Jul 31, 2013 07:51 AM

                  Stumbled across the show a month or two ago, starts just before I usually get home from work so I usually miss the beginning. Nice to have a show that features actual cooking with no screaming at/abuse of the contestants.

                  1. h
                    Harters RE: Caroline1 Jul 31, 2013 09:32 AM

                    We're just about to start a new series of Celebrity Masterchef in the UK. Does that make its way across the Atlantic?

                    My guess is probably not - not least because I rarely know many of the so-called slebs which almost certainly means the contestants would be totally unknown to foreigners.

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: Harters
                      Londonlinda RE: Harters Jul 31, 2013 11:17 AM

                      Love Celebrity Masterchef. Seeing people who are good at something else (mostly!) try so hard always inspires. Was so happy when the huge rugby player Phil Vickery won a couple of years ago, making the most delicate food imaginable.

                      1. re: Londonlinda
                        Harters RE: Londonlinda Jul 31, 2013 02:42 PM

                        And then there was the actress, whose name I've forgotten, who won and is now making a second foody career. Think she has a cookbook out.

                        1. re: Harters
                          limoen RE: Harters Aug 2, 2013 05:27 AM

                          Lisa Faulkner is I think the one you mean. She's also dating John Torode now.

                          1. re: limoen
                            Harters RE: limoen Aug 2, 2013 07:06 AM

                            Indeed, it was. Thanks.

                      2. re: Harters
                        zuriga1 RE: Harters Aug 4, 2013 02:58 AM

                        John, I live in the UK, although an American, and for almost 10 years now. I don't think the Celebrity Masterchef would be very popular over 'there.' Heck, I don't even know most of the people who come on to cook these recent shows. :-)

                        1. re: zuriga1
                          Harters RE: zuriga1 Aug 4, 2013 03:09 AM

                          June - apparently viewing figures have crashed by 50% over this week, dropping from 4.7 million on Wednesday to 2.63 on Friday.

                          1. re: Harters
                            stilldontknow RE: Harters Aug 4, 2013 03:14 AM

                            The celeb Masterchef has always been my least favourite of the bunch. Masterchef and Masterchef Professionals are both about contestants who are absolutely passionate about cooking and want it to be a career. Can't help the feeling that the celeb version is just another attempt by C listers to keep their profile up. Although to be fair in some series the eventual winners have produced pretty decent food. I have to admit a real disdain for celebrity variants of most shows though so I may be a little biased.

                            1. re: stilldontknow
                              Harters RE: stilldontknow Aug 4, 2013 05:10 AM

                              I share your bias

                      3. k
                        kseiverd RE: Caroline1 Jul 31, 2013 12:30 PM

                        Recently found this on BBC America. Food seems very froo froo... BUT contestants ARE competing to make HIGH end restaurant fare. Like others have posted... shows you HOW to make something!

                        1. LulusMom RE: Caroline1 Jul 31, 2013 01:12 PM

                          I record it and watch it while I'm on the treadmill in the morning. I love it, although I find the food awfully fussy. Still, a totally mesmerizing show.

                          7 Replies
                          1. re: LulusMom
                            maryannterillo RE: LulusMom Aug 2, 2013 09:24 AM

                            the food may seem froo froo but it is classic and if you can cook that way you can cook any way you please. Andre Soltner once said you must understand a truffle before you take it out of its boundaries

                            1. re: maryannterillo
                              LulusMom RE: maryannterillo Aug 2, 2013 09:31 AM

                              Oh, I get that. Just like Jackson Pollock had to be able to paint recognizable things. It just doesn't look like food I'd be especially thrilled to eat. Too much going on.

                              1. re: LulusMom
                                maryannterillo RE: LulusMom Aug 2, 2013 09:59 AM

                                I don't know if you are also a chef, but when i think of some of the work on this show, I just want to reach into the television. sometimes it's the layers of flavor and texture that really explain and make the dish.

                                1. re: maryannterillo
                                  LulusMom RE: maryannterillo Aug 2, 2013 10:41 AM

                                  I love the show, I'm impressed as heck by what they can do. I just don't find myself wanting to eat much of it. Still and all, I find it incredibly compelling television.

                                  1. re: maryannterillo
                                    Harters RE: maryannterillo Aug 2, 2013 11:11 AM

                                    The cooking pretty much represents the sort of higher end restaurant food that we have in the UK. Not top end, of course, but better than your neighbourhood bistro.

                                    1. re: Harters
                                      LulusMom RE: Harters Aug 2, 2013 12:40 PM

                                      Totally understand that. I just think when the point is to show how many different skills you have (and not every challenge or participant falls into this), you can end up losing out on taste. All those fussy little jellies that they end up making with the desserts seem pointless to me.

                                      1. re: LulusMom
                                        Harters RE: LulusMom Aug 2, 2013 01:37 PM

                                        Oh, indeed so. Too many restaurants want to demonstrate how clever they are and forget that we customers have just come out to have a nice dinner. That said, I do like fussy food from time to time.

                            2. m
                              maryannterillo RE: Caroline1 Aug 2, 2013 09:21 AM

                              I am on a " leave of absence" and am getting some time to watch this show. A a chef of many years this show is an inspiration. it makes me want to cook! as was said in another post...no backbiting, "throwing someone under the bus" or substandard cooking. The Chefs and food critics are extremely talented and believe in mentoring this new chefs. <sigh> thank god for BBC America!

                              1. Caroline1 RE: Caroline1 Aug 2, 2013 02:26 PM

                                It's the food of my youth! It's the way my retired chef/housekeeper taught me to cook 54 years ago! The portions were larger back then, but the techniques are timeless. And the most wonderful thing about the show is,,,, NO GORDON RAMSEY. YAY...!!! That's bonus #2 for me. Bonus #1 is that in an episode I haven't gotten to yet, Heston Blumenthal makes an appearance. I have about five episodes taped I haven't watched yet. It's such a joy to see chefs who know there is a difference between a chef's knife and a cleaver!

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: Caroline1
                                  Caroline1 RE: Caroline1 Aug 2, 2013 10:54 PM

                                  I have now watched the Heston Blumenthal/Fat Duck episode (in which he did not appear) and would like to modify my above remarks. First off, many of the techniques are timeless but I don't know how far a Dewer of liquid nitrogen is going to play in kitchens of the future. That said, it occurs to me that:

                                  1. Neither Careme nor Escoffier EVER used liquid nitrogen for anything.

                                  2. Neither Careme nor Escoffier EVER put food on a plate with tweezers.

                                  3. Neither Careme nor Escoffier EVER sent people out from one of their meals with the desire to stop some place for a burger so they'd feel like they'd had a full dinner.

                                  And finally, there is absolutely NO danger that "Modernist Cuisine" will EVER be followed by a "Cuisine Minceur" movement!

                                  But this television series is SOOOOOOOOOOOO much better than anything else currently running that pops to mind for me...

                                2. s
                                  stockholm28 RE: Caroline1 Aug 2, 2013 06:45 PM

                                  I've really been enjoying watching it ...

                                  What I find really interesting is how adept the chefs are at desserts. When you watch a U.S. show like "Top Chef", the chefs are always whining about how they aren't pastry chefs and it seems that their dessert repertoire doesn't extend much beyond bread putting and crème brulee. However, the British chefs make both gorgeous mains and desserts.

                                  I wish they'd do a similar show in the U.S.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: stockholm28
                                    maryannterillo RE: stockholm28 Aug 2, 2013 08:48 PM

                                    Never happen.US chefs don't play this sort of game well.

                                  2. ennuisans RE: Caroline1 Aug 3, 2013 12:26 AM

                                    I'm trying to watch--there's about 8 taped right now and they're out of chronological order, with poorly-worded descriptions, so I can't really watch it as a competition show--and from my own perspective it's slow going for two reasons:

                                    1. The mind-numbingly slow cadence I've become used to by US Masterchef/Top Chef presenters just grates more in this new environment. But to their credit when they do talk there is usually some information being passed along.

                                    2. I am entirely unfamiliar with just about everything going on, from ingredients to techniques. Garlic wrapped pigeon leg? Gin and tonic jelly? And I do not know if these are English techniques, or French brought over, or where they come from. But Top Chef Masters dishes are refreshingly pedestrian in comparison.

                                    That said, the reason I'm still watching this show is: consider the episode where the chefs each have 12 minutes to prepare sea urchin. Even one of the judges is unfamiliar, as are most of the contestants, but they are all treated with respect. Compare this to the recent US Masterchef where Jordan was bawled out for rinsing his uni (and then in the UK it's allowed that uni can be rinsed, just not under running water). Masterchef Professionals are treated as good chefs with more to learn, while US Masterchef amateurs are kicked around as idiots for not knowing everything already.

                                    16 Replies
                                    1. re: ennuisans
                                      Caroline1 RE: ennuisans Aug 3, 2013 04:34 AM

                                      Yes! A cooking show with smiles, kindness, and no bitter derision or side of humiliation or jumping out of planes? What a concept! It has to make the food taste better, not to mention being a great aid to digestion.

                                      1. re: ennuisans
                                        maryannterillo RE: ennuisans Aug 3, 2013 06:49 AM

                                        What do you mean by "refreshingly pedestrian"?

                                        1. re: maryannterillo
                                          ennuisans RE: maryannterillo Aug 3, 2013 08:46 AM

                                          Only that when I watch TCM I can understand what's happening, at least in a general way, with the food. "If I can understand it it can't be that difficult" I suppose.

                                        2. re: ennuisans
                                          Harters RE: ennuisans Aug 3, 2013 07:32 AM

                                          "And I do not know if these are English techniques, or French brought over,"

                                          Without wishing to be overly pedantic, Masterchef has chefs from all over the UK, not just the English part of our country.

                                          It can be difficult to draw a line between what is British cuisine and what is French cuisine. Particularly so if you are talking about the cuisine in northern France which, only 22 miles away, has a climate similar to ours. I cannot recall the two dishes you mention but both seem to be incorporating typically British ingredients - garlic, pigeon, gin, tonic, jelly. There has typically been a strong French influence in British cooking from, say, the end of the 18th century (when many cooks to the nobility fled France during the revolution). It lasted until World War 2 and, perhap, a little while after. Since then, we have re-discovered our own cuisine.

                                          1. re: Harters
                                            ennuisans RE: Harters Aug 3, 2013 08:58 AM

                                            Thank you, that's more than I knew before. Coming from the Ozarks, where we generally throw things into a skillet and try to take them out before they burn up, I have almost no point of reference as to other culinary traditions. And with every chef cross training in different techniques these days it's hard to sort everything out.

                                            1. re: Harters
                                              Caroline1 RE: Harters Aug 3, 2013 07:47 PM

                                              My impression from the 2012 episodes of Masterchef Pro (UK) that I've watched is that these chefs are almost exclusively "classically trained," which in my book can mean either via a top culinary school, or the older more traditional way through "working up the line" and apprenticeship/mentoring by well recognized premier chefs.

                                              Unless last year's programs marked a change in format, the dishes the chefs have been asked to prepare and/or emulate are all dishes based on fairly traditional "haute cuisine", one of which (to my surprise) was a moderately modern version of a classic Marie Antoinne Careme recipe! You don't often come across those on restaurant menus any more! Even Heston Blumenthal's FAT DUCK recipes would be right at home in several "Modernist Cuisine" restaurants in the U.S., and other parts of the world.

                                              Anyway, when it comes to "Michelin Star" cooking, my impression is that all of the restaurants of that class (globally) pretty much emulate "classic" French cooking, as from the era of "haute cuisine" a la Careme and Escoffier. The daughter of dear friends in the UK graduated from the London Cordon Bleu about thirty (or so) years ago, and that is certainly what she was taught at that institution back then.

                                              But from another forum, a Brit friend shares his experiences with quaint and classic (and delicious!) pub food in classic English countryside pubs. When it comes to food, you guys have it made in the shade!!!

                                              1. re: Caroline1
                                                Harters RE: Caroline1 Aug 4, 2013 02:54 AM


                                                There has been something of a slight change to the programme over the various series and I think the general standard of chef is now higher than it was in earlier series.

                                                As for the "classically trained", you're right that most have probably gained their skills from an apprenticeship, whether formal or informal - starting in the kitchen as a commis chef and gaining promotions as they gain skill and move around to different places. . As for more formal college training, we have nationally recognised qualifications for both chefs and servers which are gained usually in local colleges, rather than any sort of top culinary school. In my own smallish town (population about 200k), the college has its catering department training young folk in the skills. They also operate a training restaurant, open to the public at nominal charge for lunch and dinner, allowing the students to practice their skills and , in doing so, be assessed by the college teaching staff.

                                                With regard to Michelin, British cooking has moved on since the 1960s, up till which timne there was very much still a fascination that it had to be French to be good. We have now have "ethnic" Michelin restaurants as well as many others which are very firmly in the British tradition - for example this recent meal in a starred pub - http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/905486 You'd have to form a view about whether, say, serving a beurre blanc was classic French or has been part of British cuisine for a couple of centuries and we can now claim it as our own. OK, we use the French words - but we use the French words for courgette and aubergine as well.

                                                1. re: Harters
                                                  Caroline1 RE: Harters Aug 4, 2013 01:04 PM

                                                  mmmm... "British cooking has moved on since the 1960s" hmmmm...

                                                  In most culinary dictionaries, "classically trained" means a chef has EITHER graduated from a respected culinary school (can be as much as a 3 or 4 year program) ***OR*** apprenticed to master chefs under whose wings they learn everything that is done in and out of a professional kitchen when it comes to shopping for, preparing, and plating the menu. Occasionally you'll find a talented chef who has done both.

                                                  I suspect that at least some of the chefs you write about in your reports of restaurants/inns/pubs where you have dined in the UK (very nice write-up of yours you link to) ARE "classically trained" chefs. With the exception of fast food restaurants, most mom&pops, and street food, the majority of "upscale" restaurants have a classically trained chef as their executive chef and/or Chef de Cuisine, and many may even have a battalion of classically trained sous chefs or even line cooks.

                                                  Until you gain the status of a super elite chef in a super elite restaurant, and depending on the country in which you're employed, you won't be knocking down the big bucks, most especially in the U.S., but I don't know for certain about the UK.

                                                  Being "classically trained" simply means the chef KNOWS the basic techniques for making all of the classic sauces, the techniques for poaching, for roasting, for braising, for confit, etc., etc., etc. Being classically trained does NOT mean a chef is committed to working in "French restaurants" for the rest of his culinary career. It simply means he has the tools to properly prepare food well, whether it be molecular gastronomy, haute cuisine, or foods of any classic "ethnicity."

                                                  No one today, that I know of, plates classic French dishes of Careme and Escoffier in the way they plated them in their time, or the way they were plated mid-twentieth century. If today's upscale "fancy" restaurants plated ingredients of that quality in those portion sizes, they would be rapidly closing their doors and rushing off to bankruptcy court! But some of their recipes do live on. In one of the shows under discussion here, Michel Roux, Jr. prepares his modern interpretation of a Careme dish that he serves in Le Gavroche, and then asks the chefs to make it. And they do! Most very well.

                                                  But that brings up a point I'd like to make. In this day of the internet and television and mass media that does everything except physically touch our taste buds, there is a HUGE amount of "cultural dissemination" in the food world, commonly called "fusion cooking." Personally, hate it! It's one of the things I often weep and rant about on these boards. There are NO top shelf restaurants in the world that I know of that make ANY "pure from the page" recipes of ANY world class classical cuisines, with the possible exception of Chinese.

                                                  For example, most people (and professional chefs) would agree that Michel Roux, Jr. plies and practices "classic French cuisine" at Le Gavroche. I disagree on the "classic French" part. He absolutely uses classic French cuisine TECHNIQUES, but the dishes he serves have borrowed heavily from other cultures and reflect the globalization of our world today. Point: Go here:
                                                  and click on the video at the bottom right of the page. It is a video of Roux, Jr., making his octopus and soft shell crab with sweet tomato and chile dressing that is featured on the menu. What TV cooking show fan can watch that and NOT think of Bobby Flay, who is also a classically trained (French) chef. Chiles are NOT Classic French ingredients!

                                                  So... Even though some of the chefs who appear as contestants on Master Chef UK, Pro may not be currently working in a top-of-the-line-fancy-schmancy restaurant, I suspect all of them are "classically trained," though some of them appear not to understand the full meaning of that phrase, and seem to mistakenly think it has to mean that they have graduated from a first class culinary school. Or maybe the classic definition of "classically trained" has been scuttled in the UK?

                                                  My point is, as always, BEWARE! The media and the web are smushing all of the great cuisines of the world into one common "Cosmic Soup"! God help us all... <sigh>

                                                  Oh, and yes. Buerre blanc *is* a classic French emulsion! '-)

                                                  1. re: Caroline1
                                                    Harters RE: Caroline1 Aug 4, 2013 03:19 PM

                                                    Well, of course, I have absolutely no idea what the individual contestants may mean when they say they have been classicly trained. I can only give you my interpretation about how chefs may be trained in the UK. I did this in my earlier post.

                                                    As for the "first class culinary school" to which you refer, I'm not aware that these generally exist for the UK's catering industry. It is certainly not how chefs would train to receive the nationally accredited qualifiations to which I also referred. As I said, these are gained by attendance at local colleges. If a chef working in the UK holds a qualification, then it would usually be at one of the levels of the National Vocational Qualification (NVQ) or, in Scotland, the Scottish Vocational Qualification.

                                                    1. re: Harters
                                                      Caroline1 RE: Harters Aug 4, 2013 08:14 PM

                                                      You mean credentials from Le Cordon Bleu, Paris, founded 1895, are not recognized by your NVQ??????? '-)

                                                      1. re: Caroline1
                                                        Harters RE: Caroline1 Aug 5, 2013 02:23 AM

                                                        No, I don't mean that ( *).

                                                        What I'm saying, as my earlier contribution (and now repeated for the second time) is that the vast majority of chefs would not train at the Cordon Bleu but would develop their skills either through training on the job, through a form of apprenticeship or would study for the NVQ at a local college. For example, of the five Michelin starred restaurants in my region, two chefs gained their skills through apprenticeships, whilst the other three started out at their local catering colleges (according to online biography information). By the by, I've Googled to see if I could find well known British chefs who claim Cordon Bleu training, without much success - although the second page of Google did identify a Russian chef working in a pub who was Cordon Bleu trained.

                                                        (* As far as I know, the NVQ is entirely skills based and that "credits" towards success are not given for other qualifications. As such, past attendance at Cordon Bleu would be irrelevent, as such, but would, obviously , mean that a student already had skills. I'm unsure why any student, having attended Cordon Bleu would then want to spend further time gaining an NVQ, even at the highest level of the qualification.)

                                                        1. re: Harters
                                                          Caroline1 RE: Harters Aug 5, 2013 09:52 AM

                                                          Here's a list of the top ten culinary schools in the world, as rated by the Chef Education blog site:

                                                          As you see, Le Cordon Bleu is not ranked number one, but I've mentioned it because it is one of the oldest and largest culinary education institutes in the world, and well respected in all circles.

                                                          You question why a chef would complete culinary school and still seek the experience of working in the kitchens or the world's top chefs. Experience! For example, before they closed, El Bulli was said to have a waiting list of chefs who wanted to come and work there free, just for the opportunity to learn from Feran Adria, and they were willing to pay their own airfare and lodging! There are other famous chefs who also have a plethora of "volunteers." It's always desirable to learn from the top practitioners of any field!

                                                          Cooking, at that level, is a world community, and nearly all of the people practicing at that level now who the others are, if they don't count them among their list of friends.

                                                          One of my pass times is "touring" the great restaurants of the world, and reading the chef's biographies and their menus. It's sort of like computer technology... You can learn a great deal more by reading the catalogs offering the latest equipment than you can by reading computer magazines, and so it goes for learning about and understanding the styles of cooking and the ingredients used. With food, when you stop learning, you are condemning yourself to peanut butter sandwiches the rest of your life! Or maybe just Campbell's tomato soup. Something like that... '-)

                                                          1. re: Caroline1
                                                            Harters RE: Caroline1 Aug 5, 2013 12:03 PM

                                                            "You question why a chef would complete culinary school and still seek the experience of working in the kitchens or the world's top chefs. "

                                                            Erm, no I didnt. I questioned why they would undertake an NVQ if they had already completed a Cordon Blue course. Please do try to read my posts correctly - it greatly aids discussion.

                                                            As you correctly point out, many young chefs will undertake unpaid "stages" at the better restaurants. It's a win/win situation. Young chefs get experience and the kudos of being able to put well known places on their CV and restaurants manage to get free labour that they could not afford to pay for. As is reasonably well known, El Bulli consistently failed to make a decent profit, even with the free labour.

                                                            1. re: Harters
                                                              Caroline1 RE: Harters Aug 5, 2013 03:10 PM

                                                              Had I been filthy rich when El Bulli shut down, I would have put in a bid on their spice racks. Have you seen them? Glorious!

                                            2. re: ennuisans
                                              pine time RE: ennuisans Aug 3, 2013 08:22 AM

                                              I love that "slow cadence" just 'cause it's more real-time, without the screaming "hurry, move it, come on now" that we see on our MasterChef, Anne Burrell's "find-a-chef" show, etc.

                                              What I've been surprised about is the repeat of some of the same ingredients over and over: fish (very little beef or pork), peas 99 ways, broad beans, jellies of everything, and crumbles with some sort of pudding for dessert. That said, (except for being fish-phobic), I'd eat every bite.

                                              Loving the guidance from Michel Roux, Jr., Greg and Monica and those skills tests are brutal without treating the cheftestants brutally.

                                              1. re: pine time
                                                maryannterillo RE: pine time Aug 3, 2013 10:25 AM

                                                Well said. I think the menus are seasonal...hence the peas

                                            3. d
                                              dmjordan RE: Caroline1 Aug 6, 2013 05:43 AM

                                              Thanks for turning on to this show. I love it! I love Monica and her facial expressions.

                                              4 Replies
                                              1. re: dmjordan
                                                LulusMom RE: dmjordan Aug 6, 2013 05:48 AM

                                                Her facial expressions are priceless. You know *right* away how she feels about something.

                                                1. re: dmjordan
                                                  Harters RE: dmjordan Aug 6, 2013 09:00 AM

                                                  I reckon Monica acts her role on the show well. If ever she gets fired from the industry, she should look to fulltime acting. Reason for saying this is that I've seen her on other programmes and she is a warm, considerate woman - almost entirely the opposite of her role on Masterchef.

                                                  1. re: dmjordan
                                                    zillabreeze RE: dmjordan Aug 8, 2013 11:04 AM

                                                    I'm a big fan of Monica,too. When she quietly criticizes a dish it is more biting & dramatic than all of the yelling & screaming on the US shows!
                                                    I learn so much from her technique demonstrations.
                                                    MCUK is just a joy for this Yank!

                                                    1. re: zillabreeze
                                                      pine time RE: zillabreeze Aug 8, 2013 12:23 PM

                                                      Agree completely. And now I'm thinking in terms of "bang on," "cheers, mate," "over the moon," "gutted," and "chuffed." Fun! Or should I say, "lovely."

                                                  2. d
                                                    dmjordan RE: Caroline1 Aug 6, 2013 10:20 AM

                                                    Well, I've now watched 4 episodes is two days. It started yesterday with 10 chefs and now after the fourth episode there are only two. They ended the episode saying how on the next episode there will be 10 new chefs. What about the two guys from this first round of 10? When is the finale for those two?

                                                    18 Replies
                                                    1. re: dmjordan
                                                      pine time RE: dmjordan Aug 6, 2013 10:34 AM

                                                      I've seen this just recently, too. Seems like they've dropped the ball on completing one set of chefs then begin a whole new round.

                                                      BTW, anyone noticed that "Oli" is on again? In a recent go-'round, he was one of the final three. Now he's here again, but I get a feeling this is an older show. Are they allowed to repeat? I've tried to catch the dates at the end, but no luck yet.

                                                      1. re: pine time
                                                        LulusMom RE: pine time Aug 6, 2013 11:00 AM

                                                        Are you sure it is the same Oli? I thought it was a different person with the same name.

                                                        1. re: LulusMom
                                                          pine time RE: LulusMom Aug 6, 2013 11:10 AM

                                                          Looked to me like the same guy, but I could certainly be mistaken.

                                                          1. re: pine time
                                                            Caroline1 RE: pine time Aug 6, 2013 11:18 AM

                                                            For what it's worth, I too thought it was a different Olie. I remember thinking that must be a very popular name in the UK.

                                                            1. re: Caroline1
                                                              Londonlinda RE: Caroline1 Aug 7, 2013 09:14 AM

                                                              Oliver is consistently one of the most popular names in the UK and I've never met one over the age of about 12 who didn't prefer to be called Oli!

                                                              1. re: Londonlinda
                                                                Caroline1 RE: Londonlinda Aug 7, 2013 02:16 PM

                                                                I'm of an age when I cant hear or read the name Oli without Oliver and Hardy popping to mind!

                                                      2. re: dmjordan
                                                        Coogles RE: dmjordan Aug 6, 2013 11:21 AM

                                                        The 2 semi-finalists from the first group of 10 will go head to head towards the end of the series for a spot in the finals.

                                                        1. re: Coogles
                                                          dmjordan RE: Coogles Aug 6, 2013 04:58 PM

                                                          Ah ha! That explains it. Thank you. That explains why there were only 4 episodes, as well.

                                                          1. re: dmjordan
                                                            stilldontknow RE: dmjordan Aug 7, 2013 04:31 AM

                                                            You're basically seeing one week of episodes, the following weeks repeat the same format for 3 weeks, then the remaining 8 go to head to head, the remaining four have a week of semi final challenges before the final 3 go into finals week.

                                                            1. re: stilldontknow
                                                              dmjordan RE: stilldontknow Aug 7, 2013 09:40 AM

                                                              Great! Lots of episodes left!

                                                            2. re: dmjordan
                                                              fooder RE: dmjordan Aug 8, 2013 12:10 PM

                                                              The whole structure goes like this (i could be a little off):

                                                              a group of 10 chefs do the invention test
                                                              the 10 get split into two groups of 5 who then do the skills test and two classic dishes test to become 3 quarterfinalists
                                                              the 3 from each group join back up to form 6 who do an invention test and the critics' test, resulting in 2 semifinalists

                                                              this repeats 4 times to get 8 semifinalists
                                                              there's another invention test to become 6 semifinalists
                                                              these are then paired off to do service stints at 1 and 2 star restaurants followed by one last 2 course test.
                                                              this results in 3 finalists

                                                              the 3 finalists cook one dish each for a gathering of starred chefs, do service stint at a 3 star restaurant, and then do a 3 course final test for the winner.

                                                              This week on BBC-A started the 2011 series (season). The previous week was the end of the 2012 series, and why there didn't seem to be any continuity and questions about names (there was an Oli in each season).

                                                              By the way, I only noticed this after reading some comments online, but now I can't get it out of my head. The fat critic is essentially Peter Griffin, right?

                                                              1. re: fooder
                                                                pine time RE: fooder Aug 8, 2013 12:24 PM

                                                                So, didn't the 2011 season just show recently, too? I've already seen Oli (I swear it's the same guy :) ), and now there's --again--Claire and Steven. I'll re-watch, just 'cause I like it that much.

                                                                1. re: pine time
                                                                  fooder RE: pine time Aug 8, 2013 12:27 PM

                                                                  Well they show 2 hours worth every day, so seasons go by very quickly. So currently they just restarted the 2011 season. Before this was the 2012 season. Before that was the 2011 season again. So if you've been watching this for some weeks now, you'll have seen the 2011 season, the 2012 season, and now another re-airing of the 2011 season.

                                                                  1. re: pine time
                                                                    LulusMom RE: pine time Aug 8, 2013 01:13 PM

                                                                    Yes, the 2011 show was shown a few weeks back and they're reshowing it.

                                                            3. re: dmjordan
                                                              Sablehart RE: dmjordan Aug 8, 2013 12:21 PM

                                                              I'm pretty sure they've been repeating the same season for the past few weeks....The other contestants do show up eventually, and I found it got more interesting towards the end b/c they started doing things like working in high-end kitchens, etc.

                                                              1. re: Sablehart
                                                                pine time RE: Sablehart Aug 8, 2013 12:25 PM

                                                                I think we were typing at the same time! I'm again seeing Claire, Steven, and Oli, but will watch again happily.

                                                                1. re: pine time
                                                                  Harters RE: pine time Aug 8, 2013 03:11 PM

                                                                  Claire, Steve & Oli are definitely the 2011 series finalists. .

                                                                  It gets confusing as there was also a Claire in 2010 - and I've eaten at her restaurant, here in north west England. It wasnt that good a place.

                                                                  1. re: Harters
                                                                    LulusMom RE: Harters Aug 8, 2013 04:22 PM

                                                                    That's sort of sad to hear (about Claire's restaurant).

                                                            4. Thanks4Food RE: Caroline1 Aug 8, 2013 06:59 PM

                                                              Never heard of it till this thread but we've recorded it and have watched several episodes. We love it. It's just night and day from the stuff we've been watching like Next Food Network Star. What a change to have people who know what they're doing--and who don't utter a word but let their food speak for itself.

                                                              We don't know what most of the food is we're looking at, the terminology, the Britishisms, but we really like the show. I have to say I LOVE that Michel guy--wish I had had a few people like him in my life for encouragement and enthusiasm. Told my husband I want him to talk to me that way: "It's just superb! It's really yummy."

                                                              That Greg Wallace is great too--I thought he was just like "guest celebrity" but he seems to really know his food. Can someone tell me about him? Is he a chef himself?

                                                              11 Replies
                                                              1. re: Thanks4Food
                                                                Harters RE: Thanks4Food Aug 9, 2013 02:15 AM

                                                                Wallace's background is as a greengrocer - started selling from a market stall and, eventually, turned that into a multi-million pound business. It was during that part of his career that he started to do some radio programmes about fruit and vegetables and his media career has developed from that. He owns a couple of restaurants in London (neither of which get very good reviews).

                                                                He co-presents all the Masterchef variations, working with a chef - John Torode for Masterchef and Celebrity Masterchef and Michel Roux in the Professional version. At first, he was something of a joke - pretty much just repeating whatever Torode had said, but in later series, his own personality and dining taste has come through and, to my mind, he makes a much better contribution now.

                                                                1. re: Harters
                                                                  Thanks4Food RE: Harters Aug 9, 2013 06:09 AM

                                                                  If he's that rich, he could get his teeth fixed...

                                                                  1. re: Thanks4Food
                                                                    Harters RE: Thanks4Food Aug 9, 2013 06:16 AM

                                                                    We Britons are not fussed about having perfect teeth. It's part of our quaint national charm.

                                                                    1. re: Harters
                                                                      Thanks4Food RE: Harters Aug 9, 2013 11:13 AM

                                                                      If you say so. ;-)

                                                                      I would just think that if you're that fussy about food, you'd also care about that with which you use to eat it.

                                                                2. re: Thanks4Food
                                                                  dmjordan RE: Thanks4Food Aug 9, 2013 08:00 AM

                                                                  Thanks4Food, I totally agree! It's so refreshing to watch this after watching the FN. I also like how when the contestants are eliminated they say things like, "They made the right choice.", or "I just didn't do well." instead of "Those judges don't know what they are talking about!"

                                                                  1. re: dmjordan
                                                                    pine time RE: dmjordan Aug 9, 2013 08:58 AM

                                                                    Agree, plus I like the judge's way of dismissing without shaming: "you had a bad day at the office" is so refreshing after our show's screaming, plate throwing and demeaning judging.

                                                                    1. re: pine time
                                                                      Caroline1 RE: pine time Aug 9, 2013 12:19 PM

                                                                      ahem... Gordon Ramsey is Brit, not American, and there's no other chef on the planet with a temper as vile.

                                                                      1. re: Caroline1
                                                                        pine time RE: Caroline1 Aug 9, 2013 12:41 PM

                                                                        Guess I was referring to the American productions, not just the chef.

                                                                        1. re: pine time
                                                                          Caroline1 RE: pine time Aug 10, 2013 02:41 PM

                                                                          I knew what you meant, but I just can't pass up a chance to take a swipe at Ramsay because I think his temper tantrums are unforgiveable. I totally despise people who think their giftedness entitles them to belittle and badger others.

                                                                          Caroline's rant for the day! Thanks for reading!!! '-)

                                                                    2. re: dmjordan
                                                                      ennuisans RE: dmjordan Aug 9, 2013 10:51 AM

                                                                      And the contestants just walk away. No goodbyes, no gladhanding (or sniping). Off to the lockers.

                                                                      1. re: dmjordan
                                                                        Thanks4Food RE: dmjordan Aug 9, 2013 11:19 AM

                                                                        Yes, it makes me like all the contestants so much more.

                                                                        I also love that there's none of that false friendship as on Next FN Star wherein they're pretending to be grieved when one gets voted off the island. And those "behind the scenes" bits where they're forced to talk to one another as though they'd like nothing better than to see the other guy win.

                                                                        We've been wondering if it's part of the rules that they can't talk back to the judges. They're all so silent and never offer any excuses. Or is it just class? ;-)

                                                                    3. d
                                                                      dmjordan RE: Caroline1 Aug 10, 2013 02:00 PM

                                                                      I've seen so many bandaged fingers but with none of the "drama" of how they cut their finger. They only showed someone cutting his finger once and that was because he had to leave the contest because of it.

                                                                      1. Thanks4Food RE: Caroline1 Aug 14, 2013 07:35 PM

                                                                        AHHH!! We thought we had recorded all the episodes but just finished watching the one where the semi-finalists cook for 30 Michelin star chefs--thinking this was the last of the season. (We had thought that these 30 chefs were going to choose the one they felt should be Master Chef.) But then our semi-finalists walked away saying, "And to think this is just the start of the semi-finals."

                                                                        Will these programs be aired again or are we out of luck?

                                                                        Last week we did try some free download online but it was so annoying with ads coming up constantly that we'd just as well do without.

                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                        1. re: Thanks4Food
                                                                          Caroline1 RE: Thanks4Food Aug 14, 2013 08:47 PM

                                                                          You might check out youtube. They seem to have quite a few episodes there.

                                                                          1. re: Thanks4Food
                                                                            LulusMom RE: Thanks4Food Aug 15, 2013 02:26 AM

                                                                            They seem to be showing them over and over again mornings and afternoons on BBC America so you may well not be out of luck.

                                                                          2. n
                                                                            nikkihwood RE: Caroline1 Aug 15, 2013 09:29 PM

                                                                            I wrote to BBC America and asked them to consider broadcasting seasons 1-3. This is such a terrific show, and even the reruns of seasons 4 & 5 have interesting - there are always little bits that you miss.

                                                                            1. ennuisans RE: Caroline1 Aug 16, 2013 12:27 AM

                                                                              After watching the Oli/Aaron episode where they worked in Marcus Wareing's restaurant, I thought I'd look up where Aaron's creativity had taken him since the show. Turns out that after all his difficulty during the dinner service, he's gone on to work for Wareing himself as commis chef. Who says networking isn't important?

                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                              1. re: ennuisans
                                                                                Harters RE: ennuisans Aug 16, 2013 01:52 AM

                                                                                I reckon the contestants who get to the later stages get some real benefit to their careers (which is, of course, why they enter).

                                                                                My favourite contestant from all five series, Steve Groves, is now head chef at one of Michel Roux's restaurants - "Roux at Parliament Square".

                                                                                1. re: Harters
                                                                                  Caroline1 RE: Harters Aug 16, 2013 11:04 AM

                                                                                  WOW! That was one public job interview. Or is it more properly called "networking?" (Pun intended.) '-)

                                                                              2. Kris in Beijing RE: Caroline1 Aug 17, 2013 01:30 PM

                                                                                +1 for MC:UK.

                                                                                I love that it seems to be a true test of cooking skills.
                                                                                No "and you have to do it whilst standing on a stool holding a spoon in your mouth."
                                                                                None of the "this will be for bloggers and must feature a Kellogg's product."

                                                                                So far, my favourite is the Pigeon Skill Test.
                                                                                What Top Chef could prep a bird for roasting?

                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: Kris in Beijing
                                                                                  dmjordan RE: Kris in Beijing Aug 17, 2013 06:07 PM

                                                                                  I know what you men, Kris. I always thought the Top Chef chefs were at the top of their games but I wonder how many could do some of these skills tests.

                                                                                2. n
                                                                                  nikkihwood RE: Caroline1 Aug 17, 2013 09:43 PM

                                                                                  BBC America will finish the second or third go-round of Season 4 next week, and segue right back into Season 5. I wish they would schedule the first three.

                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: nikkihwood
                                                                                    sockii RE: nikkihwood Aug 20, 2013 03:01 PM

                                                                                    As someone else suggested (elsewhere?) I'm going to email BBC America and beg for earlier seasons. I really loved watching season 4 and 5.

                                                                                    1. re: sockii
                                                                                      LulusMom RE: sockii Aug 20, 2013 03:53 PM

                                                                                      If you do, please let us know (and maybe give the email address). I'd be happy to email too, creating if not a groundswell, at least a little bump.

                                                                                      1. re: LulusMom
                                                                                        sockii RE: LulusMom Aug 20, 2013 06:58 PM

                                                                                        I sent a feedback comment here


                                                                                        1. re: sockii
                                                                                          nikkihwood RE: sockii Aug 20, 2013 09:13 PM

                                                                                          That was me, that was the link, and I just sent a follow-up request.

                                                                                  2. iL Divo RE: Caroline1 Aug 19, 2013 11:20 PM

                                                                                    I am pleased to have found it and completely by accident thumbing thru channels.
                                                                                    LOVE THE SHOW

                                                                                    10 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: iL Divo
                                                                                      iL Divo RE: iL Divo Aug 20, 2013 02:04 PM

                                                                                      now viewed all the taped shows thru the wee hrs of the night and conclusion is -
                                                                                      I no longer think of myself as a very good cook. am mediocre at best.
                                                                                      the 3 in the finals (2011 season is what I've been taping) •is there a newer season on?•
                                                                                      ^^^are dynamos in the food industry. gad any of them could have stepped away with the title but felt the winner was always just a step a head

                                                                                      1. re: iL Divo
                                                                                        Harters RE: iL Divo Aug 20, 2013 02:22 PM

                                                                                        I think I had the 2011 winner tagged all along. Worthy winner.

                                                                                        1. re: Harters
                                                                                          LulusMom RE: Harters Aug 20, 2013 03:55 PM

                                                                                          Very worthy winner (hand clapped over mouth so as not to ruin the fun for those who still don't know). I'd love to taste the food.

                                                                                          Agree with il Divo. I feel fairly incompetent compared to these people. That said, if I ever serve something with a jelly-thingie on the side, please put me and my diners out of our misery.

                                                                                          1. re: Harters
                                                                                            dmjordan RE: Harters Aug 20, 2013 07:27 PM

                                                                                            For me, it was a toss up between two of them but I spoiled it for myself when (15 minutes before the end of the finale) I did a search to see if they had any of the recipes posted. The first hit had the winner in the title!

                                                                                            I wish I had seen this show before I went to Barcelona this summer. I would have eaten at Ash's place. Harters, have you ever eaten at any of the contestants' restaurants (from any season)?

                                                                                            1. re: dmjordan
                                                                                              Harters RE: dmjordan Aug 21, 2013 01:55 AM

                                                                                              As you'll know, you don't get to know where most of the contestants are cooking, unless they become finalists. And, it's difficult to Google as you don't know their surnames until the final.

                                                                                              So, I may well have eaten someone's food without knowing it - as some contestants have come from my part of the world, it's likely they'll have cooked locally at some point. I have definitely eaten at the restaurant of one finalist. I'm not going to spoil anyone's enjoyment of watching a series by saying which one. But, truth be told, it wasnt that good. OK, but not stellar - and desserts were awful.

                                                                                              1. re: Harters
                                                                                                Caroline1 RE: Harters Aug 21, 2013 06:55 AM

                                                                                                And that, in my opinion, is one of the major problems with any kind of rating system, whether it be for individual chef/cooks or the establishment they own/cook in. EVERYBODY has a bad day! I too have gone to "superb" restaurants and ended up wishing we'd grabbed a bucket of KFC and gone to a drive in movie for "dinner and a show." And some "great" restaurants have also made me wish drive in movies were still around! You can read about one such experience on my profile page. It was a stunner!

                                                                                                HOWEVER... There are some restaurants at the top of the Michelin Star list who do have a system that defeats this problem fairly well, and those are restaurants such as the now defunct El Bulli, and America's own Thomas Keller's The French Laundry. These are restaurants that exclusively (with few exceptions) feature "Degustation" or "Tasting" menus, and there is a literal ARMY of super trained people throughout the kitchen and that reaches into the front of the house.

                                                                                                Consistency is always an enemy of elite restaurants, as well as fast food chains. I can get a LOUSY Big Mac at one local McD's, but drive five miles and get a really good one. The difference is the cook.

                                                                                                The error most people make is in thinking that being a chef is a creative job. Being a chef means doing the same thing exactly the same way night after night or your customers are going to scream, "THAT'S not what I was served last time!!!" The result is people like me bad mouthing the cooking at some whoop-de-doo big reputation restaurants. That's life.

                                                                                                1. re: Caroline1
                                                                                                  Harters RE: Caroline1 Aug 21, 2013 07:37 AM

                                                                                                  Agreed. It is all about consistency - night after night.

                                                                                                  1. re: Harters
                                                                                                    iL Divo RE: Harters Aug 23, 2013 11:29 AM

                                                                                                    yep and truthfully how many of us can do that?
                                                                                                    last nights' dinner was a masterpiece only because I'd watch these shows that I'd taped. I was inspired.
                                                                                                    but the night before when I'd planned on making my husbands request I didn't-plans foiled by being in a car accident. therefore it was hot dogs creamy green salad fresh bread and corn on the cob-simply couldn't muster more.
                                                                                                    OT: can anyone easily put finger on thread about lost oatmeal cookie recipe? appreciate the link TIA

                                                                                            2. re: Harters
                                                                                              ksbee RE: Harters Sep 11, 2013 01:50 PM

                                                                                              Wow, I finally made it though the whole 2011 series, and what a great build up in the semis, to the final. The episode at El Celler de Can Roca was just great. You could see the chefs grow as the competition went.

                                                                                              1. re: ksbee
                                                                                                LulusMom RE: ksbee Sep 11, 2013 02:15 PM

                                                                                                It was really great, wasn't it? And they had such wonderful and kind teachers all the way through. Lucky people.

                                                                                        2. Thanks4Food RE: Caroline1 Aug 28, 2013 06:18 PM

                                                                                          "It couldn't be any more Spanish if it chucked a maraca at you." --Gregg Wallace

                                                                                          Our new favorite line from the show: the 2011 finale.

                                                                                          I've been sick for the past few days and so my husband (on vacation) and I are watching a marathon of the 2011 competition. We really can't get over this show and will probably never watch another U.S. cooking competition again--unless something drastically changes and they start allowing intelligence and class. Embarrassing to see the commercials for the U.S. Masterchef show on Fox with everyone laughing about a chicken running lose around the studio. Yikes.

                                                                                          9 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: Thanks4Food
                                                                                            Caroline1 RE: Thanks4Food Aug 28, 2013 10:22 PM

                                                                                            You can find a lot of the programs (er... "programmes"?) on youtube.com as well as a large variety of outtakes from the show. I don't know what season it is from, but here's one that I find extremely special!


                                                                                            In it, Michel Roux Jr is interviewing prospective students for mentoring (I assume) and their task is to make scrambled eggs without any instruction of information from him beforehand. If you want to fall in love with a chef who does not have a wicked bone in his body, watch the very last student at the end of this clip who makes his scrambled eggs with a ban marie (the preferred method of any great chef) and it's the very first time I've seen Michel Roux Jr actually take additional bites from a dish after the student/contestant/whoever gets the standard "Off you go!" Charming!

                                                                                            I find it very difficult to believe Michel Roux Jr and Gordon Ramsey can be from the same planet! You can teach so much more with kindness than you can with prima donna tantrums....

                                                                                            Anyway, there are TONS of great cooking clips and entire programs to be found on youtube. They even have the awards broadcast from this year's (and other years Bocuse d'Or international competition. You don't get full recipes and such, so it is no Master Chef Professionals, but if you're in to haute cuisine, the presentations in this competition will knock your socks off!

                                                                                            1. re: Caroline1
                                                                                              Harters RE: Caroline1 Aug 29, 2013 02:07 AM

                                                                                              The story goes that Michel's father, Albert, who opened La Gavroche, used to get prospective employees to fry an egg as part of the job interview. He wanted to see how much care the chef would take in such an apparently simple preparation.

                                                                                              Never met Michel but have briefly spoken to his cousin, Alain, who runs the other family restaurant, the Michelin 3* Waterside.

                                                                                              1. re: Caroline1
                                                                                                Thanks4Food RE: Caroline1 Aug 29, 2013 06:54 AM

                                                                                                I'm intending to write a fan letter to Michel Roux Jr--and maybe Gregg Wallace--even though I never heard of them before this post. I will probably never get a chance to eat food like that in my life, but it's his kindness and encouragement that impresses me so much.

                                                                                                Changing the subject: I made a post on "home cooking" but no one has replied: what's the difference between the chocolate fondant that is so popular as a dessert on this show and then the chocolate moelleux that Claire made? I'm curious about it since Gregg said he's "done with chocolate fondant" after having that moelleux. Wondering if it's possible for a complete rookie like me to make one.

                                                                                                1. re: Thanks4Food
                                                                                                  Harters RE: Thanks4Food Aug 29, 2013 07:55 AM

                                                                                                  According to this American site, a fondant has runny chocolate in the middle, whilst a moelleux just has soft chocolate. http://thegreengourmande.wordpress.co...

                                                                                                  I think I'll stick with the fondant in that case.

                                                                                                  1. re: Harters
                                                                                                    Thanks4Food RE: Harters Aug 29, 2013 08:01 AM

                                                                                                    But it looks as though the photos contradict what he says. All I know is that in watching the 2011 competition, the fondants didn't look as good as the moelleux that Claire made. And Michel and Gregg raved about her moelleux.

                                                                                                    The top photo actually comes from a recipe I found last night that I though I might attempt: http://www.cookingchanneltv.com/recip...

                                                                                                    Wondering if I can halve the recipe for the 2 of us...

                                                                                                2. re: Caroline1
                                                                                                  Thanks4Food RE: Caroline1 Aug 29, 2013 07:32 AM

                                                                                                  With my husband home on vacation, we thought we'd check out those outtakes you mentioned, but this is all we could find: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0ma5V...

                                                                                                  Don't think this was quite what you had in mind.

                                                                                                  BTW: my husband can do a WAY better imitation of Gregg Wallace. He's now doing it every time we sit down to any meal whatsoever.

                                                                                                  P.S. LOVED the scrambled egg challenge!

                                                                                                  1. re: Caroline1
                                                                                                    dmjordan RE: Caroline1 Aug 29, 2013 03:57 PM

                                                                                                    Thanks so much for the link! I wish I had eggs in the house. I am so impressed with this show; I think I've already written at least four posts on this thread which is a lot for me. I love Michel, Greg and adore Monica. (Does anyone else think she looks less stern in MC Pro 2012 than 2011?)
                                                                                                    Who needs screaming for drama? I find myself holding my breath with anticipation as the judges taste the food. I find myself in tears I'm so happy or sad for a contestant. And I'm so amused at all of the facial expressions, British expressions (bags of flavor--my favorite!) and the joy the judges have as they sample a truly wonderful dish. Gads, this emoting is so not me. I swear it's not the alcohol!
                                                                                                    Best cooking show on TV!

                                                                                                    ETA Dang! This is my ninth post!

                                                                                                    1. re: dmjordan
                                                                                                      Harters RE: dmjordan Aug 30, 2013 01:30 AM

                                                                                                      Although that would be "bags of flavour" :-)

                                                                                                      1. re: Harters
                                                                                                        dmjordan RE: Harters Aug 30, 2013 04:21 AM

                                                                                                        But, of course!

                                                                                                3. ennuisans RE: Caroline1 Sep 10, 2013 02:26 AM

                                                                                                  It just occurred to me that, compared to the US, UK cooks are more likely competing against people they might run into again during their careers. It makes sense they would be more polite about it all!

                                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: ennuisans
                                                                                                    Caroline1 RE: ennuisans Sep 11, 2013 07:26 PM

                                                                                                    hmmmm... I suspect that can be said of chefs in any part of the world. Lots and lots of chefs work in restaurants in other countries to get experience after culinary school.

                                                                                                    I think the difference is the quality/type of restaurants Master Chef UK - The Professionals draws their talent from. Most of these "competitors" are pretty high up in the cooking world, or at least have the bg & training that allows them to compete at the haute cuisine level. Can you imagine a Michel Roux Jr in the lineup of ANY Food Network OR Cooking Channel OR Bravo OR NBC OR Fox (ad nauseum for U.S. cooking show broadcasts)????? Dream on! The ONLY reason Gordon Ramsey is so "present" on U.S. television shows/broacasts is because he's such a nasty guy in how he treats people. And yes. I am aware the the BBC's Master Chef series did at one time include Gordon Ramsey in the fold. Maybe they st5ill do, but just not on the professionals?

                                                                                                    One BBC cooking show that I truly wish BBC America would air is Heston Blumenthal's In Search Off Perfection. It's a winner! I have to settle for youtube.com. If you'd like a taste, here's a great introduction:
                                                                                                    A chef after my own heart!!! :-)

                                                                                                    1. re: Caroline1
                                                                                                      ennuisans RE: Caroline1 Sep 14, 2013 01:16 AM

                                                                                                      Heston's a lot of fun, and I haven't seen this one before so thanks for the link. I have to say I would never have thought of his solution to the myrrh problem :D

                                                                                                      1. re: ennuisans
                                                                                                        Caroline1 RE: ennuisans Sep 14, 2013 04:15 AM

                                                                                                        Ya gotta admire his sense of adventure! I hope he has those myrrh spoons on sale in The Fat Duck's (presumed) gift shop! "The Fat Duck" or no, it makes my head swim just thinking about what his costs (food AND production!) must have been for just this one single show. Mind boggling!

                                                                                                        1. re: Caroline1
                                                                                                          chompie RE: Caroline1 Nov 16, 2013 07:21 PM

                                                                                                          Does anyone know if any Masterchefs are coming back to BBCA? We are so bummed we didn't ever know that MC Prof was even on! We used to love Masterchef at Large when it was on and have one old one saved on our DVD forever so hoping they will bring it back soon! Hubby noticed it on the guide today and figures it was the last episode!

                                                                                                          1. re: chompie
                                                                                                            ennuisans RE: chompie Nov 16, 2013 07:28 PM

                                                                                                            A couple of episodes have shown up on my dvr within the last week or so, but there's nothing more coming up on the schedule.

                                                                                                            1. re: ennuisans
                                                                                                              Caroline1 RE: ennuisans Nov 16, 2013 08:55 PM

                                                                                                              With persistence, you can find both clips and some full episodes on youtube, and Google offers a $35.00 device that transfers the computer streams to your tv screen so you can watch on the big screen. How successful that is will depend on the quality of the picture being streamed from your computer. Works great with Netflix and Zulu, for example, but there's wide variance in youtube quality. A fair to middling amount of Heston Blumenthal is on youtube as well, and other "cheffy" things such as the Bocuse d'Or competitions.

                                                                                                              1. re: Caroline1
                                                                                                                ennuisans RE: Caroline1 Nov 16, 2013 10:48 PM

                                                                                                                I just got one of those a couple of days ago in fact! My next big project is gathering the Harvard food videos into a YouTube playlist. (I'm up to one!)

                                                                                                                1. re: ennuisans
                                                                                                                  Caroline1 RE: ennuisans Nov 17, 2013 12:26 PM

                                                                                                                  I'm not absolutely sure, but I think the complete series of the Harvard "food chemistry" videos are available on TED Talks. But I'm no fan of the TED search engine!

                                                                                                                  If this isn't the one full lecture you have, check this out, and there are a whole bunch of the lectures in the series in the sidebar links. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Ft0cw...

                                                                                                                  Good luck, and have fun! '-)

                                                                                                  2. h
                                                                                                    Harters RE: Caroline1 Nov 17, 2013 02:42 AM

                                                                                                    The programme is once again underway in the UK.

                                                                                                    We're just about to start week three. The format is that the week starts out with eight chefs and they are gradually reduced to two over the week. That'll mean there will be eight in the semi-finals.

                                                                                                    I'd say that the general standard, so far, is pretty good. Unlike previous series, there hasnt been anyone really hopeless. That said, I don't think I've yet seen anyone who looks like a series winner.

                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                    1. re: Harters
                                                                                                      stilldontknow RE: Harters Nov 17, 2013 05:53 PM

                                                                                                      I thought the two who went through from week one were a lot stronger than the two from last week. Monica is still on hilariously good form although I think she hasn't been quite as fiendish on the skills test as last year.

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