Mastercook – The third season – Tessa and Spring 2016

a-year-in-my-kitchen_1853817_b2074be70c57e18df71c2c49b5dbcf8fHow long has it been since the second season of our Mastercook in the Bay of Plenty, plenty of ‘bay – urban dictionary defines as: short for baby something you love ta hear a nigga call u’? Synonyms are: #girl #shawty #sweety #honey.

Mastercook – off to Persia was published in June 2014 and close to two years ago Tessa’s gourmet soiree, won Mastercook season two with her summer Italian al fresco dining experience or as the I-talians call it fuori or all’aperto NB: ‘In Italian, the expression al fresco usually refers to spending time in jail (wikipedia).’

We kick off our Spring 2016 season with the current champion.

This time round we’ve careered away from the first season’s ‘free reign’, and the second season’s ‘favourite global cuisine’, and gone for ‘all from one cook-book’.
Husband was a little ‘humphed’, cos he loves to use the internet.
The idea is that a human could buy or borrow the cookbook and cook to conquer another evening full of gastronomical guests. We’ve also decided to bring it back to 2 couples, and 6 people’s social calendars were a beast to coordinate.

Tessie chose the infamous Skye Gyngell with her beautiful burgundy-spined-cookbook “A year in my kitchen”. I’ve raved about Skye before with ‘How to make vegetarians waltz you.’, sharing about a spiced infused vegetable ‘casserole’. Tess cooked a sublime chocolate tart in Mastercook season one from the aforementioned. My ‘Lamb with prunes, chilli, coriander and spice mix’ has a lot of food splatterings on its pencil-noted page, as with the ‘Spinach, fennel and asparagus salad’.

Tessa’s Mastercook night was candlelit and turntable tuned. Fresh flowers sat in an adjoining room. The lioness with her roar sat centrestage.

It was a refreshing change to don a dress and a smash of lipstick (i say smash as all of my lipsticks have been smashed by pre-schoolers discovering them, applying with force to where they may one day grow a moustache, and then – out of guilt perhaps – smash the lid on before the colourful stick has been wound down).

They were with the mighty Ruth tonight and husband and i were looking at each other, smelling each other (even) and talking in full sentences with other adults, sitting down, or standing up, at our leisure.

To start, as the party began in the kitchen, the tasty cheese, chutney, walnut crackers and green berets went down a treat.

At last… the ‘Rare roast beef salad with green beans, new potatoes and horseradish cream’ (not forgetting the roasted red onions and homemade basil oil). This will be a difficult act to top. It was pretty much the best-est warm salad a girl could ask for, if she was asking for beef. So many flavours, perfectly matched, colours, textures – sublime. As always i could taste the care, and attention to detail (there’s a multi-storeyed sort of architecture of taste to Tessa’s cooking).

The delay for dessert meant we got to ‘tuddle on the couch’ as my Solsol would say.

Finally, after a couple of take outs and put ins to the oven,  we unanimously decided she was ready, and without waiting for her to cool she was served up with a ‘thank f**k’ dollop of cream.

Frangipane or Almond tart (with blackberries, but in this instance, plum).

‘Twas a night of yummy company, nostalgic music, new flavours and a feeling of romance. Thank you tender sister.

I’m ecstatic to return to Mastercook. It has been the highlight of ‘a season of evenings’ for a while. I find it a little disturbing how difficult it is to secure Mastercook teams and the gap in proceedings has been a dash unsatisfactory. But, to dwell, Mastercook is back! And who shall ‘clean up’ this time?

Next in line Jeremy…winner of season one.
I’m tossing up between Ottolenghi and Robert Carrier (and will probably choose based on the pud recipe, cos that’s how i roll).

Stay tuned for another season of Mas-ter-coooooooook (said like Pigs-in-Spaaaaaaaace).

I love reading your comments, kia ora for taking the time to share your thoughts

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