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Four of the best chefs in Britain are on the hunt for their perfect partner.
Three amateur home cooks are here to prove they have what it takes to be
paired with the best in the business for the cooking experience of a lifetime.
Get the butter in. Yes!
Each day, an award-winning chef will choose their perfect partner from
three talented home cooks.
-The beef's in the oven.
-I hope it's cooked all the way through.
Then, in the Friday final,
all four pairs will go head-to-head to cook for culinary royalty Pierre Koffmann.
What impresses me with food is the end result.
The taste is the most important.
The professional chefs' reputations are on the line.
But will the amateur home cooks live up to expectations?
This is Yes Chef.
Hello and welcome to Yes Chef.
Let's see who's cooking in the kitchen today.
First, it's Sarah Elson, a finance director from Brighton.
I don't tend to work from recipes.
Whatever is in the fridge I make a recipe from.
Matt DeChamps is an aerospace engineer from Chelmsford in Essex.
I like mixing in the classics and then really just making it homely
and hearty for everyone to really enjoy around a big table.
And, finally, Jamie-Anne Leech
is a personal trainer from Newcastle-Upon-Tyne.
I like healthy food, anything to do with fitness...
I like creating recipes with healthy, fresh ingredients.
Our cooks are ready to go, so all we need now is our chef.
Today's chef, Bryn Williams,
trained in some of the most prestigious kitchens in London.
He developed a reputation for immaculate modern European cooking
whilst working for esteemed chef Michel Roux Jr
and now has both a London restaurant and one in his hometown,
What I really love about food
is the smile you can give somebody else
and, for me as a chef, the greatest thing I can see is an empty plate.
That's job done.
Having cooked for royalty, Bryn's standards
are incredibly high, and he knows exactly what it takes
to impress in the kitchen.
'Respect of the ingredients is the most important thing.'
How they treat those raw ingredients.
And tidiness is very close behind it.
When they show me their dish, I need to see different techniques in there.
They must be able to listen, and work clean and tidy.
If they've got those three things,
they can hopefully go further on to the final and maybe win it.
Welcome, everyone. Now, Bryn is going to be picking
one of you to be his partner in this week's Friday Final.
What are you going to be looking for, Bryn?
I think, first and foremost, flavour on a plate,
working clean and tidy,
and a little bit of creativity as well.
So all these three things, mixed together, shake it around,
and a good plate of food.
Now, cooks, you've got 45 minutes to create your best dish for Bryn.
He will be watching your every move in the kitchen to see how you cope
and at the end, obviously, it's the all-important taste test.
Right, cooks, your time starts now.
Our cooks are off. This is the first chance to impress Bryn
with their own style of cooking.
Seafood lover Sarah is hoping to stand out
with her risotto she is making with king prawns, squid and mussels.
In general, I'm feeling very nervous about the dish.
I've cooked it and practised it a few times at home and it's gone
differently every time I've made it.
Making a classic combination is home cook Matt.
He has a lot on his plate with his dish of chicken supreme,
mashed potatoes, and a tarragon and porcini mushroom cream sauce.
I've got quite a lot of work to do.
As you can see, I'm jointing this chicken
so I need to keep my foot down and make sure I don't go over time.
While Matt tackles his bird,
he is not the only one worried about getting everything prepared on time.
Jamie is cooking her favourite Thai red chicken curry with jasmine rice.
I'm really worried about the timing so I just need to crack on,
get things done in time, and keep an eye on the timer.
-How are you getting on?
-Yeah, all good so far.
So, obviously, you're going to cook all the shellfish last minute.
-OK, so that's a bit of pressure right at the end, then.
I know. There's a bit of pressure with the risotto
because it could go horribly wrong at the last minute.
You love seafood, don't you?
I think it's from my love of travelling.
Food, cooking, travelling, is your true passion?
Yeah. I would say so. Yeah, definitely.
-Not a bad thing to have, is it?
-No, not bad at all.
-Not bad at all.
-Sounds good to me.
-Yeah, good luck.
You're making everything yourself?
Yes, we are going to make the paste from scratch.
Chillies are just being soaked.
-You love your cooking.
-I can see,
you're smiling when you talk about food.
Yeah, yeah, yeah. You sing.
-I do enjoy it.
-Well, good luck.
How are we getting on?
Yeah, so the chicken's in the oven now.
The beast is in the oven, so...
-Yeah, yeah. Cooking away. Lovely.
-Keeping an eye on that.
The potatoes are on, boiling away, for a mash.
-Well, good luck.
-Carry on, yeah.
-I'll keep my eye on that.
Well, let's start with Sarah.
-She is making a seafood risotto.
Yeah. Seafood risotto is lovely.
Got to cook the fish last minute so it's not overcooked.
It's not really pushing the boundaries.
You know, she had some mussels there. I think they are precooked.
It would have been nice to see her cooking the mussels,
using the juice and sticking that into the risotto.
-It's got a fresh, natural flavour.
-More flavour. Yeah.
I would say the main thing
is making sure that the rice has still got a bite,
but the seafood is cooked nicely,
and isn't tough and chewy.
Now, Matt is really passionate.
-You know what I mean?
-He's said all the right things.
If he can match his chat, it should be really, really good.
I just hope that chicken's going to be cooked
-because it was a big old bird.
Because it is a beast, so, I'm concerned
it's not going to cook in time.
And then last but not least, Jamie.
-Another passionate cook.
She's making a Thai curry but she's making her own paste.
We all eat Thai food, so if she gives us a beautiful Thai curry,
the chicken is nice and moist, not dry,
and she's done everything from scratch...
The paste... When I asked her, "Do you do it a couple of different ways?"
Yeah, it's always different.
-I like that.
-You see on her face, just beaming from ear to ear.
-Just really enjoy Thai food
because I love cooking with fresh ingredients and new ingredients.
So I always like to experiment with Thai dishes.
They are all in their element, so it's really good.
-Nice and passionate.
-They're all passionate cooks.
-We are spoiled again, I think.
-Yeah, you are.
Cooks, you've had half an hour.
You've got 15 minutes left.
With time ticking away,
Matt's still worried about the size of his chicken breast.
Just going to cut some of this chicken off
because it won't cook in time.
Such a beast, I won't get it done in 15 minutes.
So, while Matt's worried he's running out of time,
Sarah is racing ahead with her risotto.
-How are you getting on?
-Going all right.
I think the rice is cooking more quickly than I'd expected...
-..so I'm actually probably a little bit ahead of time.
And the fish is all going to be cooked in the warmth of the risotto,
or are you going to pan fry them first?
No, I'm going to cook it in the risotto.
-I want to get the flavour into the rice.
Please tell me that chicken is cooked.
It's... It's struggling.
-It's fighting me, so...
Sheree's here to help, look. Look at that.
Still a little bit soft, isn't it?
-It's getting there.
-Remember, it keeps on cooking. Remember.
The cooks are going all-out to impress Bryn,
but Jamie's Thai red curry is turning out a little differently
to how it usually does at home.
-How are you getting on?
-Yeah, all right.
It's a bit of a funny colour compared to what I'm used to.
-Usually goes a bit redder.
-And the chicken is in there now.
-Just simmering away nicely.
-Got coconut milk, cream in there?
-Is it normally redder at home, you said?
-Why is that?
-It's normally a bit redder.
I think it's when I've done the paste,
maybe the oils in the chillies haven't come out as much as usual.
And then just the herbs in, last minute, once it's ready?
Yeah, just stir through.
-Smells very good.
Cooks, you've got just three minutes to go.
Three minutes left, guys.
Sarah's dish is all about timing, so in the final minutes of the round,
she starts to add her seafood.
-Yeah, got to be.
-Yeah, it's tasting nice.
This is moving around in the pan a little.
Yeah, just a little garnish for the top.
-You couldn't leave him out.
-No, you can't leave him out.
-Are you happy?
Taste nice? Yeah?
'Jamie may be cool and collected
'but things are heating up in the kitchen for Matt.'
What's left to do?
Plate up the mash, chop the chicken, put the sauce on,
wilt down the carrots,
-and then we're all good.
You've got about two minutes to do all that.
Matt's feeding a family of four, I reckon.
One minute to go.
'The home cooks are making every second count.
'Will they have done enough to prove to Bryn they have what it takes
'to be his partner in Friday's final?'
Ten, nine, eight,
seven, six, five,
Right, that's it. Step away from your plates.
You've done all you can. It's time to taste.
First to be judged is Sarah, with her Dish Of The Day,
seafood risotto with king prawns, squid and mussels.
How was the challenge for you?
-I think it went OK.
-And is this how you would normally serve it?
-Are you happy with it?
-I wouldn't present it like this at home.
How would you normally present it?
I probably wouldn't have the tentacles all over the top.
They would just be in there. But it would be similar.
Similar, OK. That's lovely.
-Loads of flavour.
Risotto is cooked beautifully.
-Still has a little bit of a crunch there,
which is what you want.
And you can taste the wine in there has been cooked out as well.
That is a very good risotto.
You can taste the sea in there.
And that to me is very, very important in a seafood risotto.
The rice is cooked beautifully.
You can taste the natural saltiness from the fish.
-Yeah, very pleased.
Having Bryn tasting my food
and having him liking it is very flattering.
On that dish, ten out of ten.
-I just want to see something else.
-If she can back that up with something,
-that will be interesting to see.
-You can taste the wine.
-It just tastes like I'm at the seaside.
Loads of flavour.
Next is Matt, with his dish of chicken supreme and mashed potato,
served with carrots and a tarragon and porcini mushroom cream sauce.
-There's a bit of weight in that plate, isn't there?
There is, yeah. I need a little forklift coming in with it.
How did you find the challenge?
Yeah, the time went amazingly fast, and it was a little bit panicked
in the middle, because of the size of the chicken breast.
-The proof is in the eating.
I think it will be chicken tonight, tomorrow night,
the next night and the next night.
That's it. It'll be like Christmas. There we go.
Cheers. Lovely, look.
Let's just taste that chicken first.
That chicken is cooked really nice.
-Yeah. I think
it helped being the size of it,
because it's quite hard to get that size of that breast
overcooked in that time.
-Lovely mash. Really well seasoned.
The carrots, as you say, have got texture.
The sauce is a little bit overpowering. It's very...
Yeah, it's quite strong, isn't it?
-It's very strong...
-..and quite claggy.
-Have you tasted that?
-I did taste it,
but I think because it was sitting there for a while,
it dried out a bit and I could probably
have thinned it down a bit more again, Bryn, yeah.
It's just... The chicken should be the star of the show there.
-So the balance of the dish...
-But apart from that, the chicken is cooked beautifully.
Nice to see the skills are there.
-Yeah, cool. Thank you.
Just a little bit disappointed in myself that
the sauce didn't quite come out perfect.
The sauce just... I just think it's slightly over-reduced,
gone a bit too thick.
The skills are good. He was talking the right game.
He spoke like a chef.
Mm. That's really good.
And the potatoes are really tasty.
I could eat the whole lot. I literally could.
And, finally, it's Jamie with her Dish Of The Day.
Thai chicken curry, served with jasmine rice,
topped with crispy shallots.
How was the challenge for you?
It was good. I had loads of fun, to be honest.
-So, yeah, I enjoyed it.
-That's the main thing.
Not as red as you wanted it to be.
Yeah. I think it was the chilies.
I think maybe I soaked them for a little bit too long
or could have put a couple of extra in as well.
Well, let's have a look.
You know what?
It's not very red, you're right.
-But it's definitely got the taste there.
It's definitely still got that taste to it, of a Thai...
Because as you said, it's green curry.
It's nice and green. But it's definitely got the flavours there.
Your taste buds come alive when you eat that.
-Mm. Crispy onions are lovely as well.
Yeah. You know, get the chicken cooked,
not overcooked, nice and moist...
You've nailed it on the chicken, if I'm honest. It was lovely.
-Happy with the comments?
-Yeah, really happy.
I'm really happy with the comments from Bryn.
I mean, for someone who is, like, a professional chef of his standard,
to say nice things about your food is really complimentary. So I'm chuffed.
Yeah, it wasn't red, like she said,
but the flavour was definitely there.
As a whole, a very, very good dish.
But I think it might get a bit salty at the end.
-I just think the balance of it...
But the chicken, lovely, you know, nice and moist, so I think
that's the main thing. Nice sticky rice, crispy shallots.
And she made everything from scratch.
-Yeah, which is impressive.
Beautiful. Lovely flavours.
I love the spring onions in there, adding that crunch there to it.
-Really good. I might steal the trick of the onions as well.
Yeah, probably should have just said it was a green Thai curry
and then I would have been... I would have got away with it.
Is anyone standing out at the minute for you?
I think Sarah. Even though I still think I want to see more from her.
But she executed that risotto dish
near perfection for me.
-So I think I just need to see what else she's got in the locker.
Well, it's a good job you don't have to decide yet because you've got
-your Skills Test.
-Let's go and do it.
Bryn can choose only one of these three home cooks
as his partner for Friday's final.
And after this next round, someone will be leaving the competition.
Well, Bryn's seen you all in action,
but now he's going to set you a skills challenge.
-So, we are going to do a lemon sole.
So on a flat fish, we have four fillets.
We are going to skin three,
then we're going to cook one in the frying pan, on the skin side.
So what we are going to do first... Just going to cut along the bottom.
Then I'm going to run my knife...
-You see the line?
So we're just going to run the knife right down the middle.
Has any of you filleted a fish before?
Not a flat fish, no.
-So we need to get the knife underneath the flesh.
So again, it's very, very important
that the knife is constantly touching the bone.
So what we need to do is long sweeping actions.
Please watch your fingers.
And that's one.
What's important as well,
we don't want to see lots of little knife cuts on the flesh.
It's very important that you're gliding the knife
-off the bone.
-And not tearing into the flesh.
Not tearing, yeah. Turn the fish over.
Don't rush this part.
Don't think it's a race.
Makes it look so easy, doesn't he?
I was thinking that, yeah,
but it's not going to be that easy, is it?
Take the skin off the flesh.
We'll do a small incision here...
Then roll the knife.
Once I've got it... If you notice, the knife doesn't really move.
It goes backwards and forwards
-but it's still in the middle of the chopping board.
And we end up with...
In my North Wales restaurants, we do our own fish and chips.
And this is what we use. We use the sole.
As simple as it is, it's our top seller, believe it or not.
You know, home-made fish and chips.
There's our fillets. It's such a delicate piece of fish.
That'll take two minutes to cook.
You can just hear it sizzling.
When you cook on the skin side, the skin protects the fish.
So the heat goes through the fish.
Not a direct heat. So it's a good way...
It keeps it nice and moist.
So you can you see how it's starting to change in colour?
-So literally going to turn that over.
You've got to keep...
And you'll see now... I'm hoping...
-You can see there, now...
OK, so the fish is ready.
Out it comes.
Skin just literally peels off.
-That's what you want to see. Slice of lemon.
A very, very simple task.
But to cook a nice piece of fish beautifully,
-it's one of the best things in the world.
Right, guys, if you'd like to have a taste.
-There you go.
Gorgeous. Really, really soft.
-If you overcook the fish, it goes dry.
All the oils will come out of the fish.
So it's nice and soft.
-How are you feeling?
-Yeah, confident, yeah.
Good. OK, well, if you'd like to
make your way back to your work stations,
Our cooks are against the clock.
They have just 20 minutes to transform their fish
into a perfectly cooked fillet.
It's an amazingly simple task because it's only four fillets.
You're never going to do anything different...
-..to what it should be. It's just about the quality of it
which is important.
First, the cooks must carefully slice through the delicate flesh
without tearing it, and Matt's feeling the pressure.
It's quite challenging to find the backbone,
make sure you get the right side of it.
You can tell by the deathly silence in here,
everyone is, like, really concentrating really hard.
Whilst Bryn is looking for a cook with natural flair,
he also needs to know
they will follow his instructions to the letter.
And with someone leaving the competition after this challenge,
this simple task
has huge consequences.
All right, Jamie?
Just trying to keep as close to the bone as possible.
Try and sort of remove this part off the bone...
-..then you can lift it up and see what you are doing.
that's fine, yeah. That's it. That's it.
As Jamie takes her time with her first fillet,
Sarah's already onto her third.
How are you getting on, Sarah?
-I have two.
That's good. Two to go.
-This side feels a bit trickier than the other.
You're used to doing one side and you turn it over. It's...
-You're doing it back to front, sometimes.
Nice actions. You can see you're using the blade, which is good.
'So, while Sarah impresses Bryn with her knife skills,
'Matt, who showed off his butchery in the first round,
'is finding out this is a whole new kettle of fish.'
How are you getting on, Matt?
Getting the right side of the backbone, as you said, is...
Yeah, getting the right side. Once you're in, you just roll it...
That's it. You see? You've got to remember, it's a six inch blade.
You don't want to use just the top inch.
-Yeah, yeah, yeah.
-Try and use the whole blade.
That's what it's there for.
What do you think so far?
I think Jamie is struggling a little bit.
I think it's a confidence thing.
But that's why we've asked them to do this challenge,
to see, when they're out of their comfort zone, how they...
how they cope with it.
It is difficult. It's something I've not done before.
Bryn makes it look so easy.
Sarah looks very methodical.
I'm growing to really like how she works.
She takes her time.
It's really difficult.
From their cooking points of view, they are all quite on a level par.
-My decision will be down to knife skills, I think.
Bryn is watching for accuracy
and doesn't want to see any flesh left on the bones.
My hands are really slippery.
The first one I did, I left quite a lot of flesh on the skin,
which is frustrating.
I don't want to waste this beautiful fish.
Right, cooks, you are halfway through.
With time ticking away,
our cooks must get their lemon sole into the frying pan.
But Jamie's concerned about the fillets
she'll be presenting to Bryn.
I ended up getting a bit of the bone on the fish,
so I'm just trying to get that out,
so I don't choke anyone.
When cooking the fish, a gentle heat is key,
so as not to try out the delicate fillet.
So we'll mess it up now, just cooking it.
Bryn is looking for perfectly cooked lemon sole.
The cooks must wait patiently
before turning their fillets and removing the skin.
If it comes off that part,
you know the thinner end will come apart, you see.
First to finish,
seafood lover Sarah is feeling quietly confident.
I think it's gone OK.
I hope it's cooked all the way through.
Matt is next to finish, but this challenge isn't about speed,
it's all about precision.
30 seconds to go.
And Jamie is using every last second to ensure her fillet
meets Bryn's high standards.
That's it. Step away from your fishes.
Your time is up.
Well, let's go and see how you've got on.
Come in, guys.
How did you find that challenge?
-Bryn made it look really easy.
-He did, didn't he?
Just to the eye now, it looks very, very close.
-Too close, to be honest.
-Shall we start with Matt?
That side's good. The cooked fish looks a bit...
I think when you turned it over...
-You were a bit manly with it.
-You just need that little finer touch.
Let's have a look. See, I get the smelly jobs.
I know. I'm not touching them.
OK, good. So nothing on the bone here.
A little bit round the head here.
But as a whole, very, very good.
The cooked one, still nice and shiny,
as you can see. Well done.
You struggled at the beginning, didn't you?
-A little bit.
You can sort of see a little bit where...
What that is, being too heavy-handed with the knife.
Not letting the knife glide along the bones.
You've just gone in in between the bones.
And then your cooked one looks very, very good,
if I'm honest. Nice and shiny.
You can see, look. You can see all the juices there.
Well, thank you very much.
-Well done, though.
-Be proud of yourselves.
'The first fillet was quite difficult to get the skin off.'
But it went really well.
I think Sarah is quite comfortable.
She is shining quite a bit.
She's methodical, she thinks what she's doing.
-You like the way she works.
-I like the way she works. She's good.
'Bryn made it look ridiculously easy.
'And, yeah, it was good to learn a new skill.'
First time for me, filleting a flat fish.
So, yeah, enjoyed the challenge.
Matt and Jamie, they both had pros and cons,
in their first dish and in the Skills Test.
So it's really 50-50.
'That fish was not the best.'
I left its head on and took a few bones out of it.
-Well done to all three of you.
You've been absolutely brilliant.
But Bryn can only take one of you through to the Friday Final,
so sadly, he has to say goodbye to one of you now
and he has made his mind up.
So, Bryn, it's over to you.
Yeah, the hard bit. Do you know what?
All three of you have been fantastic.
I think going forward to the Skills Test,
I think you shone a little bit in the Skills Test, very good,
very methodical, Sarah.
It's 50-50. So I've gone down to the Skills Test.
-Jamie had a bit of trouble taking the fish off the bone.
Matt as well, when you turned the fish over,
it was a bit heavy-handed.
-Try and show a bit of respect to that fish.
And for that reason, Jamie, you will be leaving us.
No worries. Thank you.
Well done, though.
I'm a bit gutted because I would have liked to have been in
the creative bit where you get the different ingredients and stuff.
'But the other two guys have done really, really well today.
'So the best guys have gone through.'
-Did you enjoy your day?
-Yeah, I loved it.
I've had such a good time.
But, yeah, these two guys smashed it.
Congratulations, you two.
-Through to the next round.
That just leaves finance director Sarah...
I'm really chuffed.
I never thought in a million years
that I'd make it through to the next stage.
So I'm really, really pleased.
..and aerospace engineer Matt,
to cook it out for a place in the Friday Final.
Yeah, really excited. Managed to get through just by the skin of my teeth.
So, yeah, it was really close.
It's now time for our third and final round.
Our home cooks have been given all the ingredients to one of Bryn's dishes.
They'll have one hour to identify all the ingredients
and to create a dish of their own.
So, for you at home, here's what Bryn has chosen.
Bryn's ingredients are...
salmon, mussels, carrot, onion,
celery, potato, parsley, chives,
curry powder, white wine, and double cream.
Easy enough for a classically trained chef
but what will our home cooks think?
So, Bryn, any last tips for our home cooks?
I'd say, have a look at the ingredients, take your time,
plan your dish, don't make it up as you go along.
Brilliant. OK, well, let's get started.
Right, cooks, you've got one hour.
Reveal your ingredients, because your time starts now.
-They both look quite nervous, don't they?
While some of Bryn's ingredients are familiar to our home cooks,
how much do they know about combining these flavours?
The coriander and the chives is throwing me a little bit.
With the curry flavour. The potato is a curveball.
Is that coriander or parsley?
Oh, it is parsley, yeah.
Ah, so it's not cor...
Making a start? Not yet?
-I'm going to do something really, really classical.
Get the mussels in the pan,
just steam them down with some of the root vegetables.
Poach the salmon in that fish stock.
-Yeah, and then just to create
a little butter sauce to go with it.
Yeah, just remember, balance.
-Nothing overshadows anything else.
Yeah. And this... Because it's all very delicate here...
-Well, good luck.
-You'll be fine.
-Making a start?
-I am, yes.
-Got a plan.
-What's the master plan?
-Make a nice fillet of the salmon,
which I'll pan fry and then finish in the oven.
I'm going to serve that with some crispy sort of sauteed potatoes.
And I'm going to attempt to do a creamy mussely sauce to go with it.
OK. Mussels are quite delicate.
Salmon is quite delicate. Just think along those kind of...
Nothing that overpowers those flavours.
-Well, good luck.
Both cooks are desperate to impress and know this is their last chance
to prove to Bryn why they should be his partner for the Friday Final.
Yeah, I think it's going to come together.
It's a really, really simple idea.
So it's just got to be very well executed.
Make sure I get loads of flavour into the mussels and the salmon,
I'm cooking it in the dish. I think my concern is the sauce.
I've never made a creamy sauce before.
So I'm completely doing it a bit blind.
So they've both made quite a promising start.
-They've both got a plan.
I honestly thought Sarah would have been a bit stronger.
I just hope they understand the ingredients.
-The balance of it.
I think I'm concerned about what to do with the mussels,
whether I should be cooking them ahead of putting them in my sauce,
or cooking them in the sauce.
Will you be disappointed if they don't use all the ingredients?
I've got a feeling they are just going to put everything together
for the sake of it. I hope they don't.
I'm not going to use the potato and the garam masala.
We'll see how it comes together.
I just want them to cook something really, really good.
-So that salmon needs to be a little bit pink in the middle.
The mussels can't be boiled to death and be chewy,
so they are the two things.
And I just hope somebody makes a sauce using the mussel juice.
That's what I'm hoping for.
The deep fat fryer is out.
OK, Matt. What are you up to? What are you deep-frying? Onions?
Yeah, just to get a little bit of crispy onion in it.
And have you got your...? You've done your mussels here?
Yeah. I'm just going to gently poach the fish.
And then what are you going to do with the liquid after?
A little light sauce.
Whatever plan you've got, just try and execute it.
-Go with your gut feeling.
-Yeah. Thank you.
How are we getting on?
Yeah, I'm just making sure I'm not burning the spices that I've put in.
-And I'm not sure whether to cook the mussels here or to add the cream
and then cook the mussels in the cream.
I think I just need to experiment and try...
Are your potatoes in the oven?
Yes, I've put them in the oven to crisp up.
-Can I have a little look?
-There are the potatoes.
-Hopefully they'll be nice and tasty with...
Desperate to stand out with their final dish,
both cooks turn their attention to the salmon.
Sarah's pan-frying hers using the curry powder,
while Matt is using the juice from his mussels to poach his.
Cooks, you've got just ten minutes left.
Ten minutes to go.
How is this going? How is your sauce?
Yeah, it's nice actually. I think I need to put some...
-Is it tasty?
I'm trying to cut through it a bit with the lemon.
And I'm going to put some of the chives
and probably parsley through, actually, as well.
Did you use any of the wine?
-I can't have wine wasted.
No, absolutely not!
-Yeah, getting there.
-Everything is coming together.
-So is this your sauce?
Just reducing down the sauce.
-EXAGGERATED ACCENT: "Sauce."
Sauce. Us Southerners!
Very wide Essex accent there!
So what have you put in that?
That's all the stock that the mussels have been cooked in,
the salmon poached in there again.
And then, so there's white wine...
-Oh, nice. Nice.
-..all the vegetables...
Add a little bit of cream to it, a little bit of butter,
and then just really reduce it all down now.
OK. And it tastes nice?
-You've been tasting it along the way?
-Yeah. I think so.
We'll see what Bryn says and what you say.
Yeah, no, that's good. OK.
So, while Matt finishes his sauce, Sarah is having a dilemma.
Deciding when to put the mussels into my sauce...
..is my biggest challenge at the moment,
but I'm thinking I might just go with it, and I can take them off.
And Matt's having a last-minute change of plan.
So, I've decided to leave the onions off.
I tried them with the sauce,
and the two flavours are not working for me,
so I'll leave them off and just keep it very simple.
One minute left, cooks.
Just one minute to go.
Under pressure, Sarah's overcooked her sauce.
The sauce has gone way too thick.
Ten, nine, eight,
seven, six, five,
Get your herbs! Two...
-..one. That's it.
You've done all you can. It's time to taste.
First to be judged, it's Sarah,
with her pan-roasted salmon and sauteed potatoes,
served with mussels in a white wine and cream sauce.
-Come in, Sarah.
-Come on in.
How was that for you?
I thought it was going OK.
It kind of all went a little bit wrong at the end.
And I didn't really get time
to put as much sauce on the plate as I would have liked to
-and it reduced quite a lot more than I would have liked.
-Yeah. Nice crispy skin.
That's good. Because obviously when you leave the skin on any fish,
it's important the skin is crispy, so that's really good.
So when you cooked the mussels,
did you steam them or just put into the sauce and...
I put them into the sauce,
and I think that's why I've ended up overcooking the sauce, probably,
because I needed to make sure, obviously,
-the mussels were cooked.
-Nice flavour to the sauce.
Mussels are a little bit tough.
-I think they've...
-A bit over.
A bit overcooked.
Nice crispy skin. The salmon is nice and pink.
See? Look. It's good.
Nice crispy potatoes. Definitely says what it says on the tin.
It's good cooking, it's tasty,
you've seasoned all your food and that's important.
-Well done. See? Not so bad.
-It could have been worse.
-Yes, it's good.
-Be positive. It's good.
-Yeah, it's good.
-Very, very good.
-Well, well done.
-If you'd like to go back to the waiting room for the last time,
we shall see you very shortly.
-Thank you, Sarah.
-It was going really, really well
and then I kind of just ran out of time at the end
and everything kind of went a little bit awry,
but it was OK, and Bryn said I seasoned my food very well.
-Yeah, it just felt a little bit disjointed.
-Nothing really went together.
It was a bit dry, but saying that, the sauce was good,
the seasoning was good,
the salmon was cooked well, and a nice crispy skin.
I think there's a few things I probably should have done
-a bit differently, but...
-Overall, happy, yeah.
You have more potatoes than fish.
-Which... You know.
Yeah, it's just having that fine balance on the plate.
-The few little mistakes that I made with my sauce
hopefully can be forgiven a little bit.
Next into the tasting room, it's Matt.
He has made poached salmon with steamed mussels
served with a white wine and parsley cream sauce.
Here you go, guys.
How was that for you?
Yeah, enjoyable experience.
It was good to kind of be surprised at what was under there
and put into practice some of the skills
-we learned earlier today.
-Let's have a taste.
-Salmon's cooked beautifully.
Mussels are good as well.
You haven't used all the ingredients,
but that's a good plate of food.
-The sauce, again,
is a little bit overpowering, as in reduced a bit too much.
-Again, if there's anything that could use a bit of work,
-it would be the sauce.
"A sauce has to be thick." It doesn't always have to be thick.
Always think of double cream lightly reduced.
-That's thick enough.
-OK, perfect, thank you.
Well done. Pleased with the comments?
Yeah, yeah, really, really happy.
If you'd like to go to the waiting room for the last time...
-..we'll see you shortly.
-Well done, Matt.
I think I really got through
the levels of flavour I was after in there
and, yeah, really happy with the end result.
-It was. The salmon was cooked beautifully.
The mussels were nice and soft, so not overcooked.
Because people do overcook mussels.
Once that shell is opened, they're ready.
Let down on the sauce again.
But he can cook.
-The fish was cooked well?
-He said it was perfect.
It looks like it's cooked really nicely.
And the mussels, he said they were cooked really well,
so really happy with the way it's come out, so...
So, have you got any idea who you might take with you?
Yes, then I change my mind,
then I go back to it, so it's a difficult one.
Obviously, you don't have to tell us yet
because we're going to see what you make with those ingredients.
So you've got a bit more time to think about it.
Time to think, definitely.
OK, well, come on. Let's go and...
-Do some cooking.
-..see what you make.
Right, cooks, this is the best bit,
where you get to sit back and relax and Bryn gets to cook.
The name of the dish is pan-fried salmon with curried mussels.
First thing we're going to do is cook the mussels.
It's a very simple recipe.
And obviously, mussels, they're slightly salty,
so when you reduce the liquor,
if it's too salty,
we add these vegetables in now to get the freshness and the sweetness
from the celery, the onion and the carrot.
We'll add parsley stalks.
Why just the stalks?
There's actually more flavour in the stalks than there is in the leaves.
So we're going to check the mussels.
Best way to know if it's alive or dead, close the shell.
If it stays closed, it's alive.
If it opens up, it's dead.
And if it's dead, you never use it.
-So, that's OK.
Little bit of white wine.
And that's going to help create the steam and cook the mussels
and once the shells are open, they're ready.
Lid on top. They'll take a minute or so to cook.
What age did you start cooking?
I started in a bakery at the age of 12.
-I was hooked on bread.
I went on a primary school trip to make bread.
It's the only lesson I can remember in school.
I just fell in love with creating something from scratch.
So we'll add the potato first.
We're going to add the carrots and the celery.
Give that a mix.
And then this is where the curry comes in.
We use it like we would do salt.
It's just that background flavour.
And now it's important that we toast it off in the butter,
get those aromats out, and you'll see straightaway here
-that everything starts to change colour.
-Oh, wow, yeah.
Beautiful colour, yeah.
OK, so we'll add a touch of white wine.
It's important that we let that evaporate to cook the alcohol out.
Now we're going to add the mussel juice.
Again, we'll bring that back up to the boil.
We'll add some cream to it.
OK, so that sauce has now come to the boil.
We'll turn it off. There you go.
What we're going to do now...
We're just going to add some of the mussels.
We're going to keep some in their shell just for decoration
and some, just take them out of the shells.
So we'll season the fish on both sides.
Put pepper only on the flesh side,
because what tends to happen is if you put pepper on the skin side,
it will tend to burn when you pan fry it.
So that now will take three or four minutes to cook.
That's it. I wanted to stay nice and pink in the middle.
So we'll go to the herbs now.
Add all the parsley in. It just gives you
that little freshness of flavour as well in there,
cuts through all the cream.
So we just add a little bit of butter there now.
We're just going to baste that fish.
You see, we're cooking it on the skin side.
We've got to make sure this skin's nice and crispy
before I turn it over.
That'll do. So, mussels are on...
Nestle the fish in there.
-Just finish off with a few fresh herbs because, you know,
seafood is supposed to be nice and light.
You know, you want to taste that sea.
A squeeze of fresh lemon juice.
-Bit of salt. That is it.
-So that is our...
-..pan-fried salmon with curried mussels.
-Brilliant. Now, you get to taste!
We go in. I want some of this crispy skin.
What do you think?
Oh, it's terrible(!)
-Is it delicious?
-Let's have a taste.
The sauce is really light.
The mussels... You can taste the sweetness,
you can taste the curry powder, but it's not overpowering.
Really, really good.
-Thank you so much, Bryn.
-No problem at all.
OK, well, it's now time to declare your winner, but before you do,
let's have a quick recap of what our cooks made earlier.
In the first round, Sarah wowed Bryn with her flavours,
produced a perfectly filleted fish
that secured her place in the competition,
and then pushed herself out of her comfort zone,
making a cream sauce to accompany
her salmon and mussels in the final round.
'I'd love to have the opportunity to cook with Bryn and also get to,'
you know, meet Pierre. That would be an amazing experience.
Matt impressed with his chicken supreme in the first round.
He was criticised for being heavy-handed
with his lemon sole in the second round.
But was his simple dish of poached salmon and steamed mussels
enough to win him a place in Friday's final?
I don't know if I've got the edge over Sarah.
Fingers crossed I showcased to Bryn that I've got a little bit more
depth of knowledge and he picks me for the Friday Final.
Firstly, I'd like to say a massive well done to you both.
Sadly, Bryn can only take one of you through to the Friday Final
and he has made his mind up, so, Bryn, it's over to you.
It has been tough. Really, really tough.
You both cooked great dishes from the start to the end.
Between the two of you, it's very, very level pegging,
but I just think you just nipped it just with the salmon and the mussels
right at the end, so... congratulations, Matt.
-You're coming through with me.
-Thanks, Bryn. Thank you.
It's amazing. You're, like, standing there going, "Oh...
"Oh, I actually won? Really?"
I've had such a fab day today and had some really good feedback,
so I feel really happy.
Any last tips for Matt?
That's one thing. Sauces.
Just remember sauces.
Yeah, it's crazy, I've never reduced down a sauce that much at home.
I really hope I've made the right decision.
I just think with Matt, he showed great skills.
And I just think I can steer him in the right direction.
If he listens and executes it, it'll be a good day.
Going to really listen to what Bryn's got to say to me
and really do him proud in the final and make sure we win.
Tomorrow on Yes Chef...
three more home cooks go all-out to impress top chef Kim Woodward.
30 seconds to go.
It's the chance for them to work alongside the best in the business.
I am starting to feel the pressure now, yeah.
But only one can become their partner in the Friday Final.
Bryn Williams has his eye on the prize as he puts three home cooks through a series of culinary challenges, including how to fillet and cook a lemon sole. Bryn will be judged by triple Michelin-starred chef Pierre Koffmann in the final, so his professional pride is at stake. But which home cook will he choose?