MasterChef: Im not here to make friends!

MasterChef is one of my reality TV guilty pleasures. I’m a huge fan of Gordon Ramsey even though, I realize all his shows, MasterChef included are over dramatized and probably scripted. But I still find them entertaining. Childish Christian in the above clip is a hoot as he scowls and pouts when his dish isn’t chosen. “I’m not here to make friends!” He says in the one-on-one interview, just like America’s Next Top Model. Love it: catty, cheesy and addictive.

Each episode of MasterChef is structured much like the much slicker Food Network reality TV show, Top Chef: there is a small challenge (the Mystery Box challenge) for an opportunity for contestants to gain immunity in the bigger elimination challenge that happens in the second half of the episode. Top Chef might seem to have better production value, cooler graphics transitioning from scene-to-scene, faster, tighter shots of the chefs preparing food in the kitchen, and more glamorous close-ups of the finished dishes. Then again, Top Chef is a show where professional chefs compete, these are chefs with top-notch skills and proven track records of culinary experience – who can forget Hung’s famed knife skills. Check ‘em out below:

What is special about MasterChef is that it’s a competition between home chefs. Finally a reality TV show that I can relate to! It’s only the second season for MasterChef but they have still managed to find some pretty amusing characters to watch. For example, Derrick is pretty endearing as he excitedly runs down to the judging table with his lobster dish. His dish looked pretty succulent and sophisticated too with the colourful tomato and mango salad holding up that plump lobster tail. Joe Bastianich, one of the judges and also a successful restauranteur and vineyard owner also really hams up the drama for the cameras with his stoic facial expressions and blatantly honest comments. I guess he’s the Simon Cowell of the bunch. You would think that role would have been Gordon Ramsey’s but he’s a puppy dog compared to Joe Bastianich.

The best part of the above clip is when bad-ass Christian just starts eating his own dish in protest while another contestant’s dish is being judged. This material is just made-for-summer-TV. Some of my other favourite characters this season include Suzy, I love her animated facial expressions, her exaggerated looks of horror when something goes wrong in the kitchen are classic; Giuseppe is also very lovable and endearing, he uses his grandmother’s recipes from Italy! And I just like watching Ben Starr who is weird, quirky and funny.

Nobody loves lobster more than I do, so not only was I highly amused to watch the contestants cook, I was also drooling over those close-ups of the lobster throughout the segment. I love all those quick shots of the crack of the lobster shells, the juicy close-ups of cooked lobster tail being chopped on the cutting board, and the sounds of sizzle, boiling and simmering are definitely drool worthy. My favourite way to enjoy lobster is boiled, plain, classic and simple. Check out the below glamour shot of the delicious lobster I enjoyed at Rodney’s Oyster House.

Previews for the next episode of MasterChef reveal that Eggs Benedict is one of the challenges, another one of my favourite dishes. Make sure you tune in!

Cracked and boiled lobster, Rodney's Oyster House, 1228 Hamilton Street, Yaletown, Vancouver

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