Un-set panna cotta, un-smoked pigeon, raw mushrooms, and no passion. One to forget for me!

That was a tough masterclass. Over 80 ingredients and equipment I never knew existed. How many of you have a de-hydrator for food in your house? His masterclass took over 2 hours, cooking for 3 hours and feedback for 2 hours, so by the time we were finished we were shattered.

People may say that I am complaining or giving out, and that is fair enough. I’m just saying it as I see it. I’m happy to take the criticism on the dish, and let’s be honest there were serious flaws to mine, and I was lucky to stay. But to say I lack the passion to be there, when I don’t see my family for days on end is not something I am going to sit there and take. I had seen the other seven contestants before me receive strong feedback too, so by the time mine came around, I was fairly annoyed. Anyway, that’s part and parcel of it.

Michael’s food is amazing and he is a perfectionist. I’ve taken his feedback (and Nick and Dylan’s) on board and moved on. I can’t change the dish now. Micheal didn’t get to where he is today by settling for second best, so that is the biggest thing I learned from him. I’m actually booked in to his restaurant in the coming weeks. I’ll be checking for errors Michael!!

As for the pop-up restaurant, we were all very excited about that. Some amazing ingredients chosen by Giles, mostly sourced locally, which was great. It was nice to see one of the producers in Temple Bar Market getting recognition for her tomatoes.

I had great fun with Jacinta making the panna cottas and we knew they didn’t set. We couldn’t get them into the fridge in time, so they sat outside for 3 hours before we got them in the fridge for just 30 mins. I would have sent it back myself.

Funny moments this week for me were when Giles arrived; we all thought he had his shirt caught in his pants zipper. Turned out it was his belt which was made of bailing twine! Strange. He was a nice guy and doing great things with food. The other moment was when myself and Jacinta arrived back into the kitchen to finish our panna cotta’s after Brian and Sinead were there. There was raw fish everywhere. I even found some in the coffee machine. Poor Michelle from the Cake Cafe must have had serious cleaning to do after we left. Not so funny was when Sinead burnt her hand. It was really bad, and fair play to her for carrying on.

On a sad note, we said goodbye to Andy. He is such a great guy and full of knowledge. I could always turn to Andy and ask him for advice. And he was always there to pick us up when we were having bad days. Like the rest before him, he’ll he a friend for life.

Until next week

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