MasterChef feels like it’s testing us this year with episodes hopping around the schedules, and this week there’s even one on a Sunday (tonight, 12th April).
It’s not just to see if we’re paying attention – hosts Gregg Wallace and John Torode aren’t going to leap out at the start and shout “Boo!” (as far as we know) – the show has actually had to be shifted around this week to fit in with election programming.
It’s the start of the semi-finals tonight and to avoid further confusion – for myself as much as anyone – it will continue Monday, Wednesday and Friday of next week. Set your egg timers.
The following week is finals week and you’ll find MasterChef on a tasty four times – Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday.
But back to tonight’s show and there’s another change: the Relay Invention Test… Fear not, this is no PE-style run around a track wielding a baton. They won’t be decked out in some sort of MasterChef-branded sports kit.
The chefs are actually split into teams and must cook a dish together. The snag is they do it in stages, without telling the next person in the relay what they’ve done so far. So person one could start off making, say, a trifle, and the second cook could come in and add, for instance, a layer of beef sautéed with peas and onions (look, it could happen!). I’m sure John is just dying to get his smackers around the bonkers dishes that result…
It’s actually not a brand new format for the MasterChef franchise – the relay has appeared on the celebrity and junior versions – but it’s the first time we’ve seen it on the main show.
So far this series, the small invention test tweaks have worked well, so bring on the new challenges, I say. Just as long as I remember to tune in and watch, eh?