MasterChef Australia Season 14 Episode 1 out! The network 10 culinary series features Andy Allen, Melissa Leong and Jock Zonfrillo as judges. This season there are going to be 24 contestants to start off within the format of ‘Fans & Favourites’. The first episode has a runtime of approximately 90 minutes introducing the contestants and, then having an immunity pin winning challenge.
– MasterChef Australia Season 14 Episode 1 Recap Contains Mild Spoilers –
MasterChef Australia Season 14 starts off with vibrance, adrenaline and excitement. 12 of Australia’s best home cooks are brought to the forefront, who also happen to be big and dedicated fans of the show. Judges reveal that these 12 home cooks are set to compete with 12 of MasterChef’s most loved contestants from previous seasons.
The first 20 minutes of the episode is dedicated to introducing the contestants for Season 14 which gives us a nostalgic trip with our old souls returning once again to the MasterChef kitchen to compete. The 12 new faces in the kitchen are Ali Stoner, Chris Tran, Daniel Lamble, Dulan Hapuarachchi, Harry Tomlinson, Jenn Lee, Keyma Vasquez Montero, Matt Landmark, Max Krapivsky, Melanie Persson, Montana Hughes and Steph Woon. The contestants who are making their big return include Aldo Ortado from Season 10, Alvin Quah from Season 2, Christina Batista from Season 5, John Carasig from Season 7 and, Sarah Todd from Season 6.
However, these are not all as MasterChef Australia Season 14 seems to have gone all out this season as the other favourites from the previous seasons include winners, runners ups as well as members from Season 13! We have Billie McKay- Winner of Season 7, Julie Goodwin- Winner of Season 1, Sashi Cheliah- Winner of Season 10, Michael Weldon- First Runners Up of Season 3, Mindy Woods of Season 4 who held the fourth position in her season and, Minoli De Silva and Tommy Pham from Season 13.
Judge Melissa Leong reveals that this season in the history of MasterChef Australia, the contestants are going to compete in teams. MasterChef Australia Season 14 Episode 1 shows the race to secure immunity pins by 3 of the contestants, who could be both from the team of fans or favourites. After the iconic pantry rush, the judges approach the contestants one by one in true MasterChef style. We get to know what fish Sashi has his sleeve in the first episode followed by a recounting of Daniel and his story of MasterChef, as he plans to make a much-loved territory taco along with mango salsa.
The judges move on to Sarah to describe her upcoming regal dish being inspired by the Indian cuisine Laal Maans. Meanwhile, ex-alumni John is all set on making Maja Blanca, a Filipino dessert, giving us a recap of his white chocolate velouté from his season. Julie, the first MasterChef Australia winner, discusses her preparation of Lebanese cuisine and, talks about her core values of cooking being something that oughts to bring people together, along with a recount of her journey from season 1 to 13 where she went from being a mother to a grandparent and, her fears of competing with this generation which has much the edge her generation never did.
As the excitement builds up, the judges discuss their perspectives on this season. Tommy, our Vietnamese cuisine expert, gives us a segment dedicated to how MasterChef helped him embrace his culture through food. Owning up to his speciality we see Tommy dive headfirst into yet another traditional Vietnamese cuisine. We get to Montana’s dish and, her story from being a TikTok chef to being a part of MasterChef. Quickly enough as the time passes as Melissa jumps from one contestant to another to know who is cooking what dish.
We have Christina-with-the-bow give us a laugh with her national Portuguese dish and, her journey of recognising her Portuguese roots better. Contestant Harry tells her story and, how veggies have become her style as she prepares to cook a cabbage dish. From Aldo to Minoli, we get to know who’s cooking what as fun spirals in the conversations. Throughout the episode, we get snippets from previous seasons about the returning contestants as well as snippets of our new contestants’ life and story.
But tension finds its way soon to get the contestants. We see Daniel panicking over his tacos not turning up crispy along with Tommy forgetting to switch on his oven which leaves him with only 15 minutes to make sure his pork is done right for his dish and, Christina’s dish becoming too salty. The final minute stress builds up, until the clock stops.
Julie is the first one to be called for tasting by the judges and, she presents her Shish Tawook and, she is visible anxious when judge Jock Zonfrillo assures her that she is a classic and will always remain so. Moreover, Melissa goes on to praise the technical aspects of her dish. Montana comes up next with her Lemon Myrtle Parfait which the judges end up clapping for. Billie presents her dish next which is a Lamb shoulder with Anchovy Croquettes with Pea and Horseradish Puree which is a dish well done. Taiwanese Beef Noodle Soup by Jenn gets a beautiful nod as she presents a good food and, a good explanation for picking her particular cut of meat.
Daniel puts forward his territory tacos which is received with constructive criticism giving his plate a good start that needs improvement and, MasterChef is just the place to do so. Chris brings forward his elaborate traditional dish which is steamed rice noodle rolls with a pork, prawn and black fungus filing and, a Nuoc Cham which is another success amongst the judges. Meanwhile, John’s dish falls a little short in flavour, even though the presentation is phenomenal. The same goes with Aldo, who presents Portini Mushroom and Duck Ragout Tortellini beautifully but, somehow lacks an authentic touch.
Amongst all the meat, we have Harry bring in her simple yet healthy Burnt Cabbage which Melissa praises gloriously along with the other two judges. Tommy’s traditional yet fun Bum Mam gains him a hug from Melissa and lots of praises from both Jock and Andy. Steph, Keyma, Dulan, Micheal, Max, Minoli and Mindy, all three bring amazing dishes to the table.
Christina’s Bacalhau a Bras might not be the best-looking dish out in the lot but, the cook breaks down while explaining how Portuguese food is treated in Australia and what it means to her. All three judges are impressed by the end.
MasterChef Australia Season 14 Episode 1: Who Gets the Immunity Pins?
Tommy is the one who wins from the favourites for his fun, brilliant dish. And, amongst the fans, it is Harry who gets the pin for her simple yet signature style dish. The final pin goes to a favourite- Christina!
MasterChef Australia Season 14 Episode 1: Final Thoughts
The season gets a good start with the introduction of contestants both old and new. It is fun as always to see the dishes sizzle and cook and, the representation from Portuguese to Latin to Vietnamese is, like always, impressive! The winners of the immunity pins are seriously well deserved, even though most of the dishes looked fabulous in their own ways. It will be exciting to see what is up next in this fan-favourite series.
You can watch MasterChef Australia Season 14 Episode 1 now on Disney+ Hotstar.Instagram & Facebook to keep yourself updated with the latest news and reviews.