MasterChef Aus S12E08 – Recap

Alas, Courtney left last episode, so tonight is the Mystery Box challenge.

The contestants enter the kitchen to see mystery boxes waiting for them, and they’re keen as a bean to get into it.

Rows of benches have a box for each contestant, and they all file in.

However, the judges are nowhere to be seen?

Where the judges usually stand, there’s no-one and nothing.

They’re soon to arrive, and all looking pretty fab.

Andy in a peachy pink, Mel in a black and white jumpsuit I think, and Jock in classic Jock look.

After some banter, the contestants open their box, and we find out that Mel has chosen all the ingredients.

Me’s Mystery Box!

The ingredients she chose are (and please bare with me, I don’t know what most of these are) cherries, Manuka honey, black vinegar, Chinese five spice, chicken feet, spring onion, coriander, taro, King George whiting, and galangal.

Sarah T is keen as a bean to be cooking with this box.

But, there are stakes for this challenge, even though it’s not going home.

Andy tells us that all the dishes will be tasted, and if they’re one of the best five dishes, they’ll go to tomorrows immunity challenge, where one person will be safe from Sunday’s elimination.

Our faves will have 75 minutes to cook with one or more of Mel’s ingredients, and have their usual staples.

Time starts, and they’re off.


  1. The judges discuss how tough these ingredients are, and both Jock and Andy say these are not usual ingredients for them.

Mel says she wants to use these ingredients to get the contestants to have a better appreciation for them, and to show off their creativity.

I’m just chillin’, waiting for a bit of drama, or something.

Interesting things that happen:

  • Reynold decides to do something savoury
  • Bun (Ben U) decides to do a dessert, as soon as he saw the chicken feet… uh, ok, doing chicken feet ice-cream.
  • Um, a cherry pitter is a thing?! I need this for the next Cherry Festival! OMG! This could change my life!
  • I ordered some gelato, so I’m excited to eat it while I watch MasterChef. Any snack recommendations for MasterChef/quarantine?
  • Bredan and Khanh realise they’re both doing broths, and the judges declare a broth off, which I personally don’t believe in, but ok.
  • “Chicken feet is the way to every girl’s heart, right?” Chris asks with a smile. Actually, it’s proper portioning of meats.
  • Simon is having issues with getting his chicken foot jelly to set.

Time ends, and everyone is ecstatic to have their foods tasted.


As per last year, when they eat all the dishes, I’ll aim to get a photo for every one with a caption.

First up is Sarah, probably the favourite.

Whiting-Stuffed Taro Deep-Fried

Jock and Mel say this should be a dish at a restaurant, and Andy says you just want to eat more. He calls the dish epic, and she’s sent away.

Next is Reynold.

Whiting with Smoked Butter Emulsion

Mel calls it a dish to dress up for. All round, they love it.

For a little treat, here are the contestants who weren’t main features and their dishes. I’ll aim to get them in correct order. Here are the dishes by Amina, Emelia, Harry, Laura, Hayden, Rose and Callum.

It’s time for the broth off!

Khanh and Brendan stand in front of the judges with their broth
Khanh’s Egg Noodles with Chicken Feet Broth
Brendan’s Whiting and Coriander Wontons

They love both the dishes. Jock says that he couldn’t pick between the two, “They’re both absolute bangers.”

Next is Simon.

He has his Steamed Taro and in the second image you can see the added Chicken Feet Mousse.

The judges do no like it, and say the cooking was much better than the result, however today is the day to mess around with the ingredients.

Poh and Bem (Ben M) are brought to the front as they both did the chicken feet.

Crispy Chicken Feet with Five-Spice Dressing
Fried Chicken Feet with Vinegar Sauce

They enjoy both the dishes and love the tastes.

Next is Bun.

Honey Galangal Ice Cream with Chicken Fat Caramel

They absolutely love it! It’s clever, tasty, and the chicken fat brings a richness. Jock drinks the caramel.


It’s time for the decision, and the judges provides some feedback for each one.

  1. Reynold.
  2. Bun.
  3. Laura (she did the fish swimming in the green oil stuff).
  4. Sarah T.
  5. Khanh.

Tomorrow is the immunity challenge, and I’m pumped!


As usual, this recap was written as I watched the episode, so there will be spelling and grammar mistakes.

You can read last years recaps herecatch up on this season here, and watch this season over here, at

If you have a Hot Tip or want to suggest a show for recaps, tweet me, leave a comment, let me know what’s good on Facebook, or head over to my contact page and send me a message. Alternatively, leave it in the delivery options when you buy some takeaway online and it’ll head my way, I promise.

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