Michelin-starred chef Mary Ann Gilchrist puts four home cooks through a series of culinary challenges, including how to make the perfect sea bass with salsa.
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Four of the best chefs in Britain
are on the hunt for their perfect partner.
For the first time ever,
amateur home cooks will be paired with the best in the business
for the cooking experience of a lifetime.
Oh, dear. Not getting the point of it.
Each day, a different Michelin-starred chef
will choose their perfect partner...
It was by the skin of your teeth between you two.
..from four talented home cooks.
I thought all four of you did a remarkable job in the time allotted.
Then in the Friday final, all four pairs will go head-to-head
to cook for culinary royalty...
What I look for for a perfect dish is to keep it simple and tasty.
For the professional chefs, their reputations are on the line.
-Should be taking the mousse out by now.
But will the amateur home cooks live up to their expectations?
-What are you doing?!
-And who will win?
It's going to taste absolutely filthy.
This is Yes Chef.
Hello, and welcome to Yes Chef. Let's meet today's four home cooks.
First up, it's Jen Guenther.
She's a full-time mum from Washington.
My cooking style, I would say it can be quite erratic.
I really...really want to win, 100%.
Next is Chaz Newton-Smith, an artist from Stockport.
My cooking style's probably gastronomic.
I usually like to cook over 12 hours, do slow-cooking,
so doing something in 45 minutes will be a big push.
Tina Watmough is a housewife from Cheshire.
As a mum, I have to produce food quickly.
My weakness is presentation.
I'm told that by my daughter, who's 12.
And finally, Brendan McNeill is a photographer from Edinburgh.
I'm completely regimented in the kitchen
so that I know that's the order.
I'm bricking it, to be honest,
working with a Michelin-starred chef.
Well, our cooks are ready to go, so it's now time to meet our chef.
She earned her first Michelin star in 2002.
It's Mary Ann Gilchrist.
Mary Ann Gilchrist is head chef at the Carlton Riverside in Mid Wales
and has had a career spanning four decades.
I've been doing this job for 40 years.
Even now I'm still learning.
With a wealth of experience in the kitchen,
Mary Ann knows exactly what she wants.
Preparation, preparation, preparation.
Preparation is the key.
Without preparation, you have a disaster on your hands.
Mary Ann is looking for someone to complement her own unique style.
Presentation is something that I think is important.
I don't want something mucked up.
If there's somebody out there who can cook
but also has that artistic bent
to get something looking really lovely on a plate,
I shall be very, very happy.
Her no-nonsense approach means today's successful home cooks
will need to be at their best.
Choosing somebody to go through to cook for Pierre Koffmann
is a huge ask.
His reputation is phenomenal.
If I dare say it, it scares the pants off me.
Welcome, Mary Ann.
It's an absolute pleasure to have you here today.
It's a pleasure to be here.
Our four home cooks are going to be doing all they can to impress you
in the hope that you'll pick one of them to be your partner
in the Friday final.
What will you be looking for?
I'm looking for seasonality.
I don't do foams, I don't do frills and furbelows.
So, please, no foams!
-I really hate them.
-Use your time wisely, all of you.
Don't get flustered, don't get muddled,
because that will ruin everything.
Well, let's get going.
This is round one - Dish Of The Day.
Now, home cooks, you're going to be preparing the one dish
that you believe sets you apart from the rest.
You need to make it count,
because after this round, sadly, one of you will be going home.
You'll have 45 minutes, so use your time wisely.
Any last words from you, Chef?
I don't want to see mucky workbenches.
That goes for all four of you.
And for goodness' sake, enjoy yourselves.
So our cooks are off, and with one of them destined
to leave the competition at the end of this round,
they're going all out to impress Mary Ann with their Dish Of The Day.
Our cooks know that with 40 years of experience in the industry,
Mary Ann has incredibly high standards
and won't accept anything but the best.
Cooked it a million times before. Shouldn't be like this.
Hello, Jen. What are you making for us?
-I'm making a ham, leek and Stilton puff pastry pie...
..with balsamic roast potatoes and tenderstem broccoli.
-Balsamic roast potatoes?
-That's an interesting one.
New on me, anyway.
It's parboiled potatoes and just let the balsamic vinegar soak in,
salt and pepper, you know...
So, are you making a basic roux for your cheese sauce for it?
-No, it's literally just double cream.
The cheese thickens it up quite nicely.
-I'm looking forward to it.
I'm looking forward to you tasting it!
-Good luck, Jen.
-What are you making?
So, I'm doing, hopefully, medium rare loin of lamb...
-Yes, please. Um...
..on American-style fluffy pancakes made with wholemeal flour,
with a maple syrup and mint jus, with asparagus and popping candy.
I know. It's all right, don't worry. It's a conservative dish.
-It's just odd.
-I have pancakes for breakfast with bacon.
So I just thought, I like lamb, so kind of it's the same thing.
-But have you tried it with lamb yet?
-No, I haven't, but I'm about to.
So, we'll see, we'll see.
It's all right, I'm not doubting you for a moment. It's just...
-Good luck, get on with it.
Needs to rest properly.
So, what are you making, Tina?
-I'm making a honey roast duck breast.
-So, that will have a honey and soy sauce sauce on it...
..with five-spice, and there'll be tomatoes on the side
and nice, fresh Jersey Royal potatoes on the side.
-And spinach and some nice...
You just... I adore Jersey Royals.
Funnily enough, it's not unlike a dish I used to do in the restaurant.
-So I'm afraid I'm going to be comparing it.
-You'll be fine.
-Very best of luck, Tina.
-Hi, Brendan! What are you making?
We're going to accompany with okra and onions.
-What is okra? I've never had okra before.
Okra's the most gorgeous vegetable. It's used throughout...
-Carry on. I'm gritting my teeth.
It's used throughout the world in many different forms.
-I'm trying not to say anything.
-It's the slimy, it's the texture...
-That you don't like.
-..that I don't like.
So I shall be very interested to see how you deal with this.
-Well, I hope to surprise you.
OK, so let's start with Jen.
She's making leek and ham pie, with balsamic roast potatoes.
-I'm wondering if they're going to be crispy.
Because they've been marinated in liquid.
I'm just wondering if the balsamic is going to have an effect on that.
My other concern is that she's doing a cream reduction with cheese.
If that gets too hot, the cheese will split.
If you have concerns about Jen, let's move on to Chaz!
It's a bit of a strange combination.
-The lamb with the maple syrup, I can understand that.
I can just about get past the American fluffy pancake.
I don't see the relevance of the popping corn at all.
But it's certainly... It's a bit odd.
-I've got to keep an open mind.
-Tina is making duck breast.
Five-spice powder, honey and soy sauce.
-She's got Jersey Royals and roasted cherry tomatoes.
I'm afraid I don't quite see the correlation
between cherry tomatoes and duck.
-Lastly, it's Brendan.
-I like the idea of the dish.
My only concern with Brendan is the okra.
It's a personal thing, me and okra.
Well, it seems like it may take a lot to change Mary Ann's mind,
so the pressure is definitely on for Brendan.
Actually, I'm being stupid.
These are not going to fit into the dishes that I want to serve them in.
So out they come.
I'm going to cut these in half so that they fit in.
And it's not just Brendan who's starting to panic.
Might come down to the wire with the pancakes.
I'm like, "Ahh!"
Despite her calm appearance, Tina is feeling it, too.
I might look calm on the outside. Slightly less calm inside.
-It's a little intimidating.
Two minutes, guys. You have two minutes left.
Right, here we go. The exciting bit.
It'll be fine! It'll be fine. Maybe.
For Chaz, it's a crucial part of his dish.
But he's left it until the very last minute to cook his four pancakes.
One minute to go. Only one minute left.
Mary Ann is looking for seasonality and creativity,
but without too much fuss.
So it's the final push for our home cooks
who are desperately trying to impress.
-Can't see the prawn.
four... Come on, Chaz!
But disaster has struck for Chaz,
who's completely forgotten to plate up his lamb.
That's it, our four home cooks have served up their Dish Of The Day.
It's time to taste.
First to be judged is Brendan with his Dish Of The Day -
prawn vindaloo served with chilli strips, basmati rice,
carrot ribbons and okra.
Lovely. That looks good.
I hope the okra is going to be suitable.
-Brendan, I'm waiting and seeing.
-So, please, do help yourself.
-I'm trying very hard not to prejudge.
Well, let's tuck in. Where do you want to start?
-I've got to start with the okra, haven't I?
-You have to.
I've been so mean about it.
All right. You win.
-No, it's not. Actually, it's delicious.
I've got to say one tiny thing.
It's quite warm.
I think you've got your seasoning right on this.
More than adequate to the purpose.
And I hate to say it, but you've convinced me about okra.
Well, well done, Brendan. We'll see you very shortly.
OK, thank you.
The okra, she liked it.
It was slightly overseasoned, yes,
but it wasn't slimy, which is how she feared it would be.
-The prawns were cooked nicely as well.
-They were cooked nicely.
-The sauce was good. Wasn't very impressed with the rice. Dry.
Next to take the taste test is Chaz with his Dish Of The Day -
loin of lamb with wholemeal pancakes topped with popping candy,
served with asparagus, and a mint and maple jus.
-There you go.
Lovely. How did you find the challenge?
It was great until the last 30 seconds, where I forgot the meat.
-I got carried away.
-You got carried away,
-and then you forgot to put the meat on.
It was covered with tinfoil and just out of my peripheral vision,
so I apologise.
-This looks interesting.
Pour the jus over the top, it'll ignite the popping candy
and then you should get a sound of that.
-Go on, you pour.
-Like that. There you go.
Oh, right, you put the sauce on the pancake, not on the lamb?
-Well, the lamb was meant to go there.
The lamb looks beautifully cooked.
-And this is with the meat.
The popping candy's doing absolutely nothing for me.
It's probably because I put it on too early
-and it's popped already.
Sorry, sweetheart, I'm not getting the point of it.
OK, I'm going to be brutally honest.
The lamb's beautifully cooked. Nicely seasoned.
The popping candy did nothing for me.
And I've never been big on wholemeal flour,
-and I find the pancakes heavy and underseasoned.
-All right, well, thank you very much, Chaz.
Thank you very much indeed, but I think it was a brave attempt.
She didn't like the pancakes, they were too heavy.
She doesn't like wholemeal flour.
I forgot to plate up the meat.
But it was hidden behind a bit of tinfoil, so...
But she really liked the meat.
-I'm getting popping candy.
It adds the fun element to it as well, doesn't it?
I saw no point in the popping candy
-before we realised it wasn't going to pop.
I was really banking on him
-sort of somehow pulling something out of the hat.
But those pancakes,
you could have walked from here to John o'Groats on them.
Time for Tina to be judged by Mary Ann.
Her Dish Of The Day is honey roast duck breast
served with Jersey Royal potatoes,
spinach and roasted cherry tomatoes.
How did you find the challenge?
It was really difficult getting everything ready
-for the same time.
-I was a bit worried about whether the duck was suitably pink.
Always a sign that the meat's been properly rested.
The duck's beautifully seasoned.
-Absolutely bang on the button.
Funnily enough, that goes very well...
I think it's the bitterness of the spinach.
Actually goes very well with your glaze.
I'm not that bothered about the tomatoes.
My worry slightly is they're there for colour contrast.
-Ohh. If I'm brutally honest, for me, it does nothing for the dish.
Otherwise, everything is beautifully cooked.
-Well done. Some lovely positive comments there.
-Thank you very much.
-The spinach was beautiful.
-The Jersey Royals... Well, you can't go wrong with a Jersey Royal.
And the duck was beautifully seasoned and beautifully cooked.
-Which you said.
-There was no place for tomatoes on that plate.
The tomatoes on the duck dish I think probably were a mistake.
They didn't go down well.
And finally, it's Jen with her Dish Of The Day.
She's made a ham, leek and Stilton pie
served with balsamic roast potatoes, and tenderstem broccoli.
-How was the challenge for you?
Oh, loved every minute of it. I had so much fun.
-Are you ready to try?
-Go for it.
Now, I want to try a potato first,
cos these intrigued me.
-Mm. Got nice crispy edges.
I get the vinegar.
-Actually, it's quite subtle.
-Could have done with another couple of minutes.
Yeah. I agree.
Right, where do I start?
Lovely potatoes. Broccoli, a little on the crisp side.
Your pie filling, actually, is very tasty.
-It's a little over-salt.
You're always going to have this problem
-if you're using...
-..cooked ham and Stilton cheese.
-I didn't... I purposely didn't add any salt in either.
The other thing that I was concerned about
when I was watching you earlier
was that you were using a very, very lean piece of ham.
You'd have been better off with something like some shoulder ham.
-Where you've got a lot more fat going through it.
And as a result, I'm afraid, sweetheart,
the ham is actually quite chewy in there.
Apart from that, you know, I like the concept.
There's some good constructive criticism there.
-Yeah, that was fantastic, yeah. I'm happy with that.
-Good on you.
-Thank you very much.
-Been a pleasure, sweetheart.
The meat that I used was too lean, so...
-Which is fine, cos I didn't know that.
I've got to think about that one.
If it had been me, first off the list, they were quite soft.
That's a personal thing, so, yes, I have a concern.
I agreed with everything that she said.
Only three people can be taken through to the next round.
For one of our home cooks, it's time to leave the competition.
I'd be pretty gutted if I lost out at this stage.
There's a few challenges ahead that I'd like to take on
and I'd like to learn.
If I went out now, I'd be gutted.
I want to keep on going. I want to win.
There were things that I'd done right, but there were also things I'd done wrong.
I just have to hope that I've done enough.
If I went out at this stage,
I'd be disappointed, but I can take this as a learning curve.
Do you have an idea of who you're going to send home?
MARY ANN SIGHS
-I think I do.
-OK. Let's go and tell them.
Firstly, I'd like to say well done to all four of you.
However, only three of you can go through to the next round,
and Mary Ann has made her decision.
So, it's over to you, Chef.
Um, first of all, I'd like to say that I thought all four of you did
a remarkable job in the time allotted, but unfortunately,
the dish that really didn't work for me...
..was, I'm afraid it was you, Charles.
Erm, it was the pancakes.
So, the popping candy was neither here nor there. I mean,
-that really didn't matter.
-But, yeah, your lamb was immaculate,
and I would love to have been able to put you through,
but I'm afraid your pancakes let you down.
-I am sorry.
-I really am sorry.
-I don't like making decisions like this...
-It's not nice.
I feel absolutely gutted, actually,
and it's the bit that I'm normally quite good at,
the pancakes, that let me down.
So, that leaves three home cooks.
They are full-time mum Jen,
housewife Tina and photographer Brendan.
Round two, it's the Chef's Challenge.
Now, in this round, Mary Ann will be testing to see
who's got the skills she's looking for.
So, Mary Ann, what's today's challenge?
Today's challenge is to cook a really nice piece of
sea bass with a fairly simple salsa.
So, what skills will this challenge demonstrate?
First of all, how you handle a knife.
This is important for... As part of your end result.
It's about being gentle with your knife.
You know, you put too much pressure on,
you're just going to go right through the fish and cut it.
-I'm not actually going to start cooking that quite yet.
So, we put that to one side for a moment
and we make our lime and coriander salsa.
You need rind of one lime and the juice of two.
One clove of garlic,
pretty finely chopped.
Now, you want two tablespoonfuls of capers, chopped.
Then you want a nice, big handful of coriander.
Stalks and all.
-Stalks and all.
-And there's a lot of flavour in the stalks.
This doesn't want to be too finely chopped.
And you want about four to six tablespoons of olive oil.
Just rub a little bit of seasoning in.
You don't want to put the salt on particularly too early,
cos salt will draw the moisture out of the fish.
Whack your fish in.
Now, you can just begin to see on the edges,
-it's just beginning to cook. Can you see that?
Just have a quick look.
Make sure I've got a bit of colour on that.
There you go, so you've got that nice crispy brown tinge
round the edges. Right, that should be just about right now.
Off the heat.
How do you know that that's done?
Just feel it. It's firm.
You really need to cook the skin side quite thoroughly,
otherwise the meat just under the skin
-has a tendency not to cook properly.
Time to take that off.
Now, you should have a nice crispy skin
-and that's just nicely cooked through so it's still moist.
It is really fresh.
-That lime has really...
That's a great challenge, Mary Ann, thank you very much.
So, any last tips for our cooks?
Be organised, think about your presentation
and just get on with it.
'So, our home cooks have just 20 minutes to complete
'Mary Ann's skills challenge and perfect their sea bass with salsa.'
This is going really well so far.
'Whilst Mary Ann is looking for a partner with natural flair,
'she also needs to know they can follow instructions
'and is watching closely for any mistakes.'
I shouldn't have cut this before I got the zest off. It's awkward.
'Well, it's a tough challenge
'and one they all know has huge consequences.'
-Feeling comfortable with it?
You're under a time constraint so I'm not going to stand and chat,
as long as you're happy.
-How are you doing?
I'm good, thank you, apart from the fact I can't find
-a sharp enough knife to get through the lime.
-There we are, I've done it.
-There you go. But you're comfortable
-with what you're doing at the moment?
-Yes, I am.
Brendan, busy with his capers. How are you doing?
-Very well, thank you, yes.
You don't think this is going to be a problem for you?
I think I'm just about on top of it.
-I do have my pan on at this stage, waiting.
Right, well, I will leave you to it.
As I said, you're under a time constraint so I'm not going to chat.
I love anything zesty and I love salsa.
I might need a little more sauce. It's very limey.
'Our cooks seem confident that they've mastered the salsa,
'but can they perfect the delicate process of cooking the sea bass?'
-Jen, how do you think she's getting on?
-I have one major concern.
I made a point of picking my blue board, which is my fish board,
-off my main chopping board and putting it to one side.
I've noticed that the other two have followed my example exactly.
My problem is I don't know whether Jen understands.
Did she chop her herbs and lime...
She used her fish board for her capers, her coriander,
-her garlic and her lime.
-Now, in a professional kitchen, that is a complete no-no.
-So I have an issue with that, I'm afraid.
'Back in the kitchen, Jen is blissfully unaware
'of her costly error and remains focused on her task in hand.'
Cooks, you have just two minutes left. Two minutes to go.
It doesn't look as good as hers, but...
OK, that's it. Time is up.
Step away from your fishes.
-Let's start with this one.
-Right, shall we start with you, Tina?
Seasoning of the salsa is bang on.
Fish, unfortunately, is overcooked.
Jen, beautifully cooked piece of fish.
It's absolutely bang on.
The salsa is absolutely perfect.
-My problem is I have an issue with this.
You prepared your salsa on the same board
-that you prepared your fish on.
-I knew, yeah.
-For me, that is an issue.
-It's a health and safety issue.
-I know, yeah.
-I did realise afterwards.
Brendan, a very good effort.
Yours is better cooked than Tina's,
but not as perfectly cooked as Jen's.
So, that leaves me in a terrible quandary.
It comes down to the cooking of the fish and then, of course,
it comes down to my issue with the board.
-Do you want to step out and have a think?
No, I mean, at the end of the day,
the best piece of fish there is Jen's.
On the understanding that we do have an issue with the board,
I'm going to put you through.
There you go.
So, you know you can put one of these through to the next round?
-Have you made your decision?
-It's got to be Brendan, I'm afraid. I'm sorry, Tina.
-I really am.
Disappointed, but I've had a great day and I've learned loads.
That was by the skin of your teeth between you two.
I'll definitely be trying that dish again a few times at home
and get it perfect.
So, just two cooks remain -
full-time mum Jen and photographer Brendan.
But only one can be chosen as Mary Ann's partner for the Friday final.
Time now for our third and final round - the Chef's Special.
In this round, our cooks will be given
a set of ingredients to one of Mary Ann's signature dishes.
Cooks, the aim of this round is to see what you can make
with these ingredients.
You'll get to see what Mary Ann makes a little bit later on
but for you at home here's today's ingredients.
Mary Ann has chosen baby spinach leaves, cheese, truffle oil,
white wine vinegar, butter, double cream, panko breadcrumbs,
eggs and smoked streaky bacon.
Easy enough for a Michelin star chef,
but what on earth will our home cooks make?
Right, cooks, you have one hour.
Reveal your ingredients because your time starts now.
'This is the first time our cooks are seeing these ingredients
'so they must do their best to identify them
'before planning and preparing a dish in just one hour.'
'It takes a lot to impress Mary Ann
'so our two finalists are going to have to do all they can
'to come up with the perfect recipe.'
HE SINGS TO HIMSELF
'It seems like Jen has got a plan, but poor Brendan is struggling.'
I'm at a total loss here. I see what I have in front of me,
but it's not making sense in terms of a dish.
No, I do not know what to do.
'Brendan is still trying to decide on a dish.
'At the other side of the kitchen, Jen is hard at work,
'but she seems to have mistaken truffle oil for olive oil.'
Hi, Brendan! How are we going?
Erm, bit of a brain malfunction.
I am at a loss here.
-Just relax a little, it'll all pop into your head.
Hi, Jen, what are you planning to make?
Erm, a spinach and pancetta quiche.
OK. And you've identified all the ingredients?
Yeah, I think so.
-All right, well, good luck.
-We'd better leave her in peace.
-Yeah, we'll leave you in peace.
'So, Jen is making good progress
'and is already putting her quiche in the oven.
'And it seems that Brendan has finally got a plan of action, too.'
-What have you decided to do?
I've decided to do a little bacon quiche.
I'm not entirely sure where the breadcrumbs
are supposed to come from, I'm not entirely sure...
Well, I'm glad you've got a plan and you're making something.
-There is only so much you can do.
-Time-wise, I'm struggling time-wise.
-We'll get there.
-We'll get there somehow.
-I'll leave you alone.
OK, no worries.
'Mary Ann is looking for a partner who has creative flair,
'but also appreciates her no-nonsense approach.'
I think you've really given them a hard challenge, Mary Ann!
Jen has started straightaway. She's going to make a quiche.
I don't think she tasted the oil cos it's truffle oil.
She certainly didn't taste the oil
because the amount of truffle oil she's put into that pastry,
it's just going to be inedible.
I will stand corrected,
but my own personal feeling is it's going to taste absolutely filthy.
Brendan, the pressure is obviously getting to him.
He is going with two quiches - a spinach quiche and a bacon quiche.
Right. I'm surprised they didn't show a little bit more ingenuity.
I'd have thought they might have a little bit more diversity
between the two of them.
'Unfortunately for Brendan, he's got another dilemma.'
I'm at a complete loss as to how to plate them
because I've used my ingredients.
What do I do?
'But Brendan's come up with a last-minute plan
'to hopefully impress Mary Ann.'
So, what I think I might do is spinach salad
with some breadcrumbs running through it.
'And it's all going well for Jen, too.'
I'm just waiting around for them to cook.
Just trying to look to see what he's doing, how well he's doing,
but trying not to make it obvious.
(I don't want to appear too confident, though.)
'With time ticking away, our cooks start to plate up their dishes.'
(Brendan's plating it up.
(His presentation's going to be much better than mine.
(I just hope mine tastes better than his. You never know!)
I changed my plan there just at the very end. I'm done.
Right, well, I can see you're both finished
so that's the end of round three.
It's time to taste.
First to be judged is Jen.
She has made a pancetta and spinach quiche
with a truffle pastry topped with cheese.
Now, how was that challenge?
It was fun, but I'm just a bit disappointed
because I thought I could have done a little bit better,
but I did the best I could.
-I'm hoping it's OK.
-You ready to taste?
I'm going to have to say this
because, in fact, I don't know how you've done it,
but you've actually got away with something
which I didn't expect you to.
The little bowl of greeny-golden oil, what did you think it was?
Just olive oil.
-What was it?
-It was truffle oil.
-Which we use in drop-drop-drop...
-I know. That's why I feel bad now.
-You should have had a whiff.
-I did and I couldn't smell it.
-Could you not?
-I thought this was going to be inedible,
but, oddly enough, it's not.
Your pastry's not bad, I have to say. Your seasoning's bang on.
I'll be frank with you - I don't think it shows a lot of imagination.
-Yeah, I agree.
-But it's a very creditable effort, so excuse me.
Here you go, you can have the honour.
The initial hit was not the truffle oil. It was very weird.
It WAS truffle oil and I used nearly all of it in the pastry
cos I thought it was just olive oil.
You could taste the bacon and the egg,
but, now, all I can taste is truffle.
Chef said she was watching me and she was just panicking
cos I was just...
-What a shame.
-Oh, dear! Honestly...
Next to be judged is Brendan.
He's chosen to make a bacon quiche,
served with a spinach salad and toasted breadcrumbs.
How was the challenge for you?
-I felt like a little lost boy.
-Well, you've got food on the plate.
-No, I know.
I don't know what you've done with this, Brendan,
but it's a bit gritty.
I put a tiny little bit of the breadcrumbs on the very top.
Judicious use of truffle oil there, that's not bad at all, actually.
-That's a nice idea so a bit of you was thinking outside the box.
-So the quiche isn't bad. Again, the pastry's not bad at all.
-Your filling is overcooked.
But apart from that, a good effort.
I just feel that you could have been a bit more imaginative.
If you hadn't suffered from brain freeze,
we might have seen something possibly a little different.
-You've produced a perfectly edible dish on a plate.
So, with the final challenge complete,
it's just left for Mary-Ann to deliberate over our two home cooks.
Despite everything not going quite to plan,
I turned out a quiche faster than I usually turn it out.
The whole thing was just the quickest hour I've ever,
ever, ever encountered in my life.
This is where I'm going to have real difficulty.
-The salad's lovely.
Frankly, I'm not impressed with either of them.
-Potentially, one of them might work better with me than the other.
Quite simply, I think because one of them listened to me
and I think the other one...
-Not so much.
'But before Mary Ann announces the winner,
'let's see what she makes with all those ingredients.'
So, put us out of our misery.
It's deep-fried poached eggs served on a bed of wilted spinach,
which I'm going to cook in the bacon fat from my bacon
and finish the spinach with a little bit of cream,
a drizzle of truffle oil,
on the plate, egg on top, bacon on the side - boom!
-Sounds simple, doesn't it(?)
Now, you've got your water bubbling there
so you want a little bit of white wine vinegar.
A nice swirl in the middle there.
Drop your egg right in the middle. See?
-The white is slowly wrapping itself around.
I'll do those for about three minutes.
-I don't want them to break up.
So, you put the poached eggs into...
Into cold water and that arrests the cooking.
Right, now... I'll just make sure those are dry.
Right, if we now then lightly dust them in flour...
Make sure it's well coated in the egg.
Right, then into your nice cheesy breadcrumbs.
-Pop them in the fridge?
-Yes, please, sweetheart.
-It smells lovely.
-It does smell good, doesn't it?
So you were awarded your Michelin star in 2002.
Was it a lovely surprise?
It was a total shock.
There was only one, or possibly two,
Michelin-starred chefs in Wales in 2002
-and we made history because there were another three.
So we ended up with five Michelin stars in Wales,
which is absolutely amazing.
-Is there many women chefs who have Michelin stars?
-Yeah, but not in 2002, though?
-I was one of four.
Right, if I could have my eggs back...
Now, you can see...
I mean, that tiny amount of truffle oil and you could smell that
coming off the pan.
Right, let's get our eggs done and get our plate ready to go.
How long will these have to be in?
You just keep an eye on them until they go a nice golden brown...
-..and crispy and then it's...
So when you won your Michelin star,
you were the only chef in the kitchen,
-you were cooking on an Aga...
..which is so impressive. Wow.
-As I say, looking back, I don't know how the hell I did it.
I really don't. I must have been mad or something.
-And a nice crispy bit of bacon.
And there you have my deep-fried poached egg
with truffle-creamed spinach and a crispy bacon.
Right, it's time to taste.
Who's going to crack the egg?
How do you do it these days? Yes!
-That looks perfect.
-The egg goes so well with the bacon.
That's absolutely delicious, Mary, and thank you so much.
Now, it is time to reveal who you're going to be taking
to the Friday final with you.
But, before you do, let's have a quick recap
of what they made earlier.
In the first round,
Brendan impressed with his fusion of flavours with his prawn vindaloo
with basmati rice and carrot ribbons,
and he even managed to surprise Mary Ann with his okra.
Actually, it's delicious.
He scraped through the skills challenge
with his salsa and sea bass,
but he struggled in the final round and only managed to produce
a bacon quiche served with a spinach salad.
However, he did use all of the ingredients.
You made good use of the ingredients you had
and you've produced a perfectly edible dish on a plate.
I'm not convinced I've done enough to be chosen by Mary Ann, though.
So we'll have to wait and see.
In the first round, Jen impressed Mary Ann
with her classic ham, leek and Stilton pie
with balsamic roast potatoes.
Despite excelling with her cooking in the skills challenge,
a vital mistake with the chopping boards almost cost her.
-It's a health and safety issue.
-I know, yeah.
I did realise afterwards.
-I was like, "Oh, no."
-All right, sweetheart.
In the final round, Jen made pancetta and spinach quiche
topped with cheese,
but will her overuse of truffle oil prove costly?
I thought, "This is going to be inedible."
But oddly enough it's not.
If I win, fab.
If I don't, amazing day
and I've learnt I don't like truffle oil.
I don't like truffle oil.
Firstly, I'd like to say well done to both of you.
You've been brilliant all day.
However, only one of you can go through to the Friday final
and Mary Ann has made her mind up.
So, Chef, for the last time, it's over to you.
This has been a very difficult decision.
You really have both performed remarkably well.
But I have to be honest...
I'm taking Brendan through.
-Jen, I'm sorry, but there were some schoolboy errors.
The dish I'm doing on Friday, I can't afford errors.
I can't even risk it because the dish is quite special.
So I do apologise.
So, Brendan, I'm afraid you're stuck with me.
Hey, well done.
Well done, Brendan.
On Friday I hope I can soak up everything Mary Ann can teach me
and win it.
Any last tips for Brendan on Friday?
Listen to me!
Yes, Chef, I will!
Tomorrow on Yes Chef...
It's the Friday final and our four pro-am teams will go head-to-head.
You shouldn't have cut the crust.
I'm not meant to do that.
They will be judged by triple Michelin-starred chef
If it is good, I will be surprised.
But only one team can win.
What are you doing?!
Michelin-starred chef Mary Ann Gilchrist has her eye on the prize as she puts four home cooks through a series of culinary challenges, including how to make the perfect sea bass with salsa. Mary Ann will be judged by triple Michelin-starred chef Pierre Koffmann in the Friday final, so her professional pride is at stake, but which home cook will she choose?