This weekend, I was lucky enough to be invited to the BBC Summer Good Food Show as a guest of Miele. Part of the deal to us being invited to show was that we had to take part in a live on stage version of the Masterchef Invention Test and do a cook-along with a Barney Desmazery from BBC Good Food Magazine. I was very nervous and excited about taking part in both but fortunately I was not alone. I was joined by my friend James from Eat The Midlands, and fellow bloggers Kavey, Meemalee , Bron and Ailbhe. We were given basic store cupboard items and a bag containing secret fresh ingredients that were not revealed to us until two minutes before we went on stage. In our bag we had: chicken, bacon, Stilton, celeriac, mascarpone and fresh berries. I decided to cook a chicken and bacon pasta dish. The recipe is at the bottom of this post. I unfortunately did not win but I am very pleased that Kavey did with her excellent pancakes, mascarpone and berry sauce. Matt Follas and Dhruv Baker were there on stage to offer us help and John Torode and Greg Wallace came along to check on our progress and do the final judging. The videos below shows the entire invention test in two parts so please have a look and see who you know on there.
After the invention test had finished Marie, Ali and I had a look around the show. Our first stop was to visit James on the Eat The Midlands/ Gourmet Life stand where Louise from Comida y Vida and a member of the Midlands Food Bloggers was helping out. I brought some chocolate from James stand from Chokolit which I intend to do some baking with soon. We then moved on, to Supreme Sausages where we each brought our own weight in lots of yummy looking sausages that are now filling from freezer and I cannot wait to cook with them. We then got slightly distracted by the alcohol section as we tried Crabbies Ginger Beer and then went into the Beers of the World Live where you can lots of tasters of many beers and get educated about them as well. While looking round, I brought myself a Kin Knife (which I used on the Invention Test) as a birthday present to myself. (I turned 25 years old on Sunday) We also found a company called Goody Good Stuff that makes sweets that are virtually everything free (except sugar- which is the natural sugar from the fruit). Stuart and I love sweets and I thought these were excellent, especially as they are much better for you than the majority of sweets you buy, with lots of chemicals and additives in. They virtually give you permission to eat lots of them! After a quick stop at Grants for a Whiskey cocktail, it was time for me to do the Miele Cook-along and appear on stage again.
The Miele Cook-along with Barney Desmazery was much harder and a lot more nerve racking than the Invention Test. We had 30 minutes to cook three dishes in following the chef, Barney. This would been ok but some of my equipment and ingredients were missing so I spent the first 10- 15minutes catching up with everyone else. Barney also moved along at chef speed instead of our normal home cook speed so he had to keep waiting for us to catch up. I think the cook-alongs are a good idea but they need to allow more time for them, for people who do not cook at chef’s speed. We made marsala chicken skewers that we cooked in the Miele steam oven, with a tomato and red onion salad and Za’atar spiced flatbread with a strawberry, hazelnut and toffee tart for pudding. I will give you the recipes for these when I make them again at home myself soon. My Invention Test dish recipe is below if you want to make it yourself at home.
Spicy Chicken, Bacon and Peas Pasta- My Masterchef Dish
Ingredients (serves 1)
- 1 skinless and boneless chicken breast, chopped into bite sized chinks
- 3 rashers of streaky bacon or pancetta, chopped into small pieces
- 1 onion, chopped finely
- 1 garlic clove, chopped finely
- small bunch of parsley, chopped finely
- 1 teaspoon chilli powder(or more if you like it spicier)
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 tin of chopped tomatoes
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- Small handful of frozen peas
- salt and pepper
- 100g pasta of your choice
1) Cook pasta as per the packet instructions. Drain and set aside.
2) While the pasta is cooking, add the olive oil into a pan and allow to heat up. Add in the onions, garlic, bacon pieces and some salt and allow to cook until softened slightly. Add in the chicken and lightly brown all over.
3) Add in the chopped tomatoes, along with the paprika and chilli powder and allow to simmer gently until chicken is cooked through. Add water or chicken stock to the sauce if it starts getting a bit thick. Add in the frozen peas near the end so they are just cooked. Add salt and pepper to taste. Once the sauce is cooked, add parsley in at the last minute before adding the cooked pasta and mixing it with the sauce. Serve in a bowl on its own or with garlic bread. Enjoy!
Overall, We had a fantastic day at BBC Summer Good Food Show and I would like to thank all these wonderful people for making it so good:
- Nicola, Roxy and Caz and everyone at Miele
- The Students from the Birmingham College of Food and Tourism who helped us out so much on stage
- James Day and Louise Sims, who are both true foodie friends
- Kavey,Meemalee , Ailbhe and Bron and all the other food bloggers who were there taking part or supporting us.
- The staff at the Grants stand
- Melissa from Goody Good Stuff
- Andi Peters, Greg Wallace, John Torode, Barney Desmazery , Matt Follas, Dhruv Baker, Tim Kinnaird, Alex Rushmer for being so supportive and having a laugh with us backstage.
- And a very big thank you goes to my friend’s Marie and Ali for being there to support me and for being true friends.