Wednesday, August 18, 2010

"A big hug from the inside": The Mini Master Chef Challenge with Victors Food

When I moved back from London, I was poor, destitute, five kilos heavier, sans a boyfriend and homeless. Lucky for me I have amazing friends and two of my favourites let me stay/mooch/annoy them. 

I lived with Ms Mash and Bob Bob Bobbin for around two months and I loved living with them for three main reasons:

1. I love them 2. They have this amazing Beagle called Barney (who I think might be a Golden Retriever disguised as giant docile Beagle)

Not the actual Barney- but almost as cute

3. They are big time foodies and cook incredible food. (and let me eat it for free) 

I came home just before the first Australian season of Master Chef kicked off and it became a daily ritual of Bob Bob Bobbin and mine to watch it ( criticise, yell, and generally crush on Poh)

Master Chef hottie Poh: rocking hot loose waves
Since then, I have become majorly obsessed with all things Master Chef and since the season finale a few weeks back I have been suffering serious Master Chef withdrawals.

So when I received an invite to attend "Green Team-Mini MasterChef Challenge" from Victor's food I knew that Ms Mash and I had to go.

After an interesting cab ride, where Ms Mash and I counselled  the lonely driver (Cab driver: "Do you think I need a home phone?" Us: "You should do what's best for you) we arrived at Victor's full of excitement and grumbly tummies.

Instantly we were greeted with big smiles, offered a yummy glass of vino and given our uniforms for the evenings- our very own chef hat and apron.

Killer chef hat hair

Ms Mash and I were struck with a serious case of Real Estate envy as the "Mini Master Chef Challenge" was being held in Victor's home/headquarters and it is beautiful. Having just met Victor, who just oozes "super nice man and expert" vibes all over the place we decide that this dream place is Very Victor and want him to adopt us.

The challenge starts with Victor explaining the origins of Victors Food, what they believe in and he tell us that all the food we're cooking tonight is organic and the entire event is Carbon Neutral.

He also shows us how to correctly hold a knife and demonstrates how to chop and dice an onion correctly.

The most exciting part for Ms Mash was learning how to mince garlic.

The secret is nothing to do with a garlic crusher (apparently a huge chef faux pas) After finely dicing a garlic clove, add a little salt to the board and use the flat side of your knife and scrape over the garlic- and tada! perfect minced garlic.
Ms Mash can't wait to show Bob Bob Bobbin that one.
Learning how to use a knife, real life skills

We're split into two teams, Green and Blue and for a second it was a tad touch and go with Ms Mash and I almost put on opposing teams but luckily Victor saves the day for this needy girl and lets Ms Mash and I play together on the Green Team.

Victor then introduces Wanitha who is  gloriously colourful and melodic who  not only gives us a run down on what to expect but almost a sermon on food and life too. " Imagine if you can create all this abundance in an hour what you can create in a life time". We all feel instantly excited.

"Food is like a big hug from the inside" another brilliant Wanitha-ism

For the challenge each team are cooking the same three courses:

Ocean Trout in Banana Lead with Pepita Seed Recado
Baba Ghanouj (ganoooosh)
Quinoa Salad (Keenwaaa)
Mystery dish with chicken.

Ms Mash and I are given the Baba Ghanouj to cook, yes we almost hi five each other, I'm excited because I get to cook an eggplant on an open flame and use a food processor- double score.

Victor helping us out

The kitchen is a buzz, there is chopping, laughing, sizzling whizzing, rice castle building and avocado being sneakily added into our mystery dish (The Green Team's mystery dish is a fusion of Asianish flavours- we cook a stir fry type thing)and it's time to present our dishes for judging.

Ms Mash and my Baba Ghanouj-the world's greatest according to us and Barney

The scores are in and its a tense wait.....Blue team wins by half a point! (the avocado in the Green Team's Mystery dish was confusing apparently, "is it a salad or a stir fry", Wanitha questions?) And our Ghanouj was a tad too smokey, Ms Mash and I disagree and protest with under breath scoffs.

Ms Mash and I leave Victor's completely stuffed and really happy and as we leave, Victor asks " Did you have a good time?" We answer: "The best time! Can we live here please?"

*personal photos and images from google


  1. Isn't Victor fun? his classes and tours are great! :D

  2. He is the nicest man! Can't wait to do a cooking class now, oh and go on one of his market tours. It all looks like so much fun


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