South Australian mums Bree and Jessica have confirmed their place in tonights My Kitchen Rules grand final against Western Australia’s Chloe and Kelly after last nights elimination of Victorian twins Helena and Vikki.
Bree and Jessica scored 52 out of 60 for their three course semi-final menu, 10 points above twins Helena and Vikki on 42 out of 60.
Both teams went into the second semi-final with mixed form on the board. Helena and Vikki had experienced the highs of their top-scoring instant restaurant and the lows of two sudden death cook offs.
Bree and Jessica started the competition in top form with winning dish after winning dish, but struggled with the pressure of the MKR food truck resulting in a huge blow to their confidence.
The twins got off to a poor start in the semi-final with their entrée of scampi ceviche with carrot puree and watercress salad with Helena placing the scampi in the citrus cure well ahead of time.
With the scampi toughening in minutes, the girls had no choice but to prepare another batch putting them well behind schedule, but a decision that proved to pay dividends with the judges.
“The scampi is really gorgeous and the ceviche has been done really well,” noted judge Liz Egan.
But the judges did question the addition of the carrot puree to the dish with Karen Martini saying the puree was “lovely, smooth and sweet,” but she wasn’t sure it belonged on the plate.
Bree and Jessica’s first course of mushroom wontons with prawns and hot & sour broth was applauded by the judges with Liz Egan saying it was a “spectacular dish.”
“Wow! What a great entrée. Just flavour from the start. It’s hot and it’s got that sour note. This is a good dish,” agreed judge Colin Fassnidge.
But the mums’ main of smoked duck breast with seared scallops and Asian greens was not as well received by the judges with its presentation being described as “pedestrian” and “lack lustre.”
Although the duck was cooked perfectly, co-host and judge Manu Feildel criticised the team for the lack of sauce served on the plate.
“Where is the sauce? Do you know how many times I have been asking for the sauce? This is the semi-final and I am still asking for it. Those mistakes are silly mistakes. They should have known by now.”
The twins’ main of quail with stuffed vines leaves and avgolemono sauce was described as “gorgeous” by the judges with Colin saying: “This is a dish I would expect to eat in a fine dining Greek restaurant.”
Co-host and judge Pete Evans agreed saying: “To be honest, I can’t fault this dish. I just think it’s sensational.”
The twins’ confidence from the success of their main was short-lived when it was time to plate up their dessert.
Their intended third course of kourabiedes with Greek coffee and burnt butter ice cream became burnt butter custard with coffee and almonds after their ice-cream failed to set.
While the judges commended the girls for thinking on their feet, they agreed it was not a semi-final worthy dessert with Karen Martini describing the presentation as “a bit of a jumble in the glass.”
By comparison Bree and Jessica’s peach and apricot tarte tatin with cinnamon ice cream was exactly what the judges were looking for in a semi-final dessert.
Karen said the dish was “outstanding” and “quite possibly one of the best dishes I’ve had on My Kitchen Rules!” Manu was also impressed with the mums’ “heavenly dessert,” asking if he could use their recipe.
“I’ve made thousands of tarte tatins. I thought my mum did the best. And then I thought I did the best. But now I think I’ve got people in front of me who did the best!” he said.
While Bree and Jessica finished the night on a high with their dessert, Helena and Vikki conceded defeat after a troublesome night in the kitchen.
“Tonight wasn’t the best we’ve done, but I’m more than proud of what we have achieved,” said Helena about their time on the program. “This competition meant everything to Vikki and I. We have lived our dream being on My Kitchen Rules.
“We’ve learned a lot. A lot about food and a lot about ourselves. We are going to continue our career together,” said Helena about the twins future cooking plans.
And in a final nod to their rivals, Helena said: “It kills me to think that Chloe and Kelly could win this competition, but we are SA all the way. Bree and Jess need to win.”
Celebrating their semi-final win and looking ahead to tonights grand final, Bree said: “Now it’s just down to us and Chloe and Kelly. Those girls have got their work cut out for them because we’re going to be fighting.”