A FISH-FILLED pressure test farewelled Gilgai chef-in-the-making Nick Doyle on MasterChef last night.
Doyle, who grew up on a property near Gilgai, was eliminated after undercooking his squid in a previous dish and hoped the pressure test would not involve seafood.
His nightmare came true, and he felt he was going home from the start.
“I knew going into this elimination that if it was fish or seafood, I would probably go home,” he said.
“It was really kind of disheartening. I thought if the dish wasn’t going to be a dessert, I thought I would be going home, but it had to be a whole fish dish.”
Doyle had to cook a carpaccio of smoked eel, cured trout and cured Murray cod, smoked fish consomme jelly, fresh yabbies and fish crackling, with watercress puree and wild fennel.
“The challenge was the hardest two hours of my life and I’m not exaggerating,” he said.
The Newcastle University Arts/Law student said watching the episode back last night gave him some closure.
“I went there to grow and learn and it’s what I needed to learn,” he said.
“I have amazing friends out of it - Brent, Georgia and Laura.”
Doyle said being on the show had cemented his desire to make food his career.
“I’m grateful that so many people applied and I will always be proud to have made the top 24,” he said.
He said the experience opened his eyes to the world of food and the world of TV.
“It’s the best and the hardest thing I’ve done,” he said.
“I never went on MasterChef to be a tv star, I always went on there for the food.”
Doyle now runs a catering food stall up in Newcastle and would love to work with his friends from the show on other projects.