How To Win Masterchef

If you want to win this show you'll need to shelve your ideas of jelly helicopters and chicken with strawberry sauce and follow these five easy steps.
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1. For crying out loud, don’t mix meat and fruit!

Okay, don’t freak out, but you’re going to be on television. Those cameras – they’re filming you. Those two guys – the one who looks like a puppet, and the one with the massive cushion up his jumper – they’re the judges. They’re going to watch you cook, they’re going to taste your snack, and then they’re going to tell you in front of millions of people whether your food reminds them of the kind of dinner they’d like to be served in a lovely restaurant or not. Perhaps it tastes like prison food? Did you cock things up and end up with something only suitable for a dog? Sorry, did a monkey assemble this plate? Scary isn’t it? You just need to stay calm and listen to the logic part of your brain. Don’t be curve-balled by the name of the first round, the Invention Test isn’t all jelly helicopters and chicken with strawberry sauce, they’re just looking for something promising and edible. So when you look down and see a nice juicy steak placed directly next to some long thin potatoes, take the fucking hint.

2. At first, get John on your side

Once you’ve done throwing together some brunch for Gregg, he’ll disappear off into a little side room to shout opinions at John during the stolen moments when he’s not sucking chocolate off his fingers. And as a rule of thumb, when it comes to these Torode/Wallace “who should go through” stand-offs, John wins. The reason for this is simple – John is a trained chef, Gregg is a fat man with one half of a partially scoffed jam roly-poly giving him a headrush like you wouldn’t believe, and the other half sitting is his trouser pocket waiting for the cameras to sod off.  Can we hurry up and get back to the bit where we eat?

Watch out for the bleating prick with the expensive set of professional knives, his own chef’s hat, and an eagerness to impress – he won’t win.

3. Never ever excel in the professional kitchen

There is a stark contrast between impressing your greedy friends with some lovely dipping sauces and prawns in savoury polo necks and squeezing even the faintest of smiles from a mad South African bastard who doesn’t have time to listen to your stupid stories about foraging for mushrooms, or making the most surprisingly delicious soup from wolf dicks and buttercups. They just want to shout “away table three!” in your face and see you deflate like a balloon chocolate cake that totally outfoxed Gregg. Hence, watch out for the bleating prick with the expensive set of professional knives, his own chef’s hat, and an eagerness to impress – he won’t win. Instead go for the one who trundled in, look confused, started sweating, and then dry puked throughout a short angry lecture about the consistency of shrimp cappuccinos.

4. Bake Gregg a massive chocolate cake

During the business end of the competition, when it’s all in the balance and promising contestants are being chucked away like bad cabbage leaves, Gregg suddenly comes into his own as an important part of the show. Up until now, it’s all been about getting the thumbs up from Torode, now it’s time to get Wallace in your pocket. But how to do this? Easy - bake him a fucking enormous chocolate cake. Don’t worry, if he can’t manage the whole thing, he’ll just pop his cock into whatever’s left on the plate.

5. Insert buzzwords into your food conversations

These guys don’t just want to taste some nice lunch from you, they also want to get to know you. This means that you’re going to have to speak, so it might be wise to have a few things jotted down, so that you don’t just stare at them like a lemon when they’re asking you intrusive questions about why you like cooking – plus, ridiculously, it doesn’t appear to be reason enough to suggest that you enjoy eating nice dinners. So, instead, whenever a question is pitched your way, simply start blathering inanely, carefully peppering key phrases like “honest cooking”, “rustic food”, “hearty fare”, and “just simple ingredients done well” into the ensuing drivel. By the end of this monologue, you’ll be happy to find John beaming like a cartoon puppet, whilst Gregg accidentally smears jam in his eye trying to get rid of tears.

And that’s how you win Masterchef.

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