What I learned from Masterchef

As I write this, the Australian Masterchef finale 2011 is airing. For reasons known only to them (I suspect to boost ratings on a struggling show) they broke the finale into two and inserted another reality competition in the middle. Just plain stupid. Mostly because it ticked off the viewership. Big time.

Anyway, this post is not about berating Channel 10 for their stupidity, it’s about things that I have learned from Masterchef.

So this is what I’ve learned:

I will never be a Masterchef – Actually already knew that (as did all my friends and family). But watching the things these competitors do, I know that I would never even make it to the top 50. And I am ok with that. I do know a few people who cook well enough to compete if that was what they wanted to do. Personally I’m quite happy for them to just practice on me. 😀

Social Media makes watching competitions fun. I’ve never been a fan of reality TV and really the only reason I watch Masterchef is because I like to see the interesting food they come up with and the restaurants they go to. Social media makes it so much more fun. The Twitter discussions on #masterchef are hilarious (though admittedly sometimes mean) and you can always find people who agree with your opinions and observations. This year there were 4 of us also chatting about the finale via Facebook. That was fun, like having our own little Masterchef party even though we mostly live in different cities.

What’s life without butter? – The cooks on Masterchef use a LOT of oil and butter. It’s hardly recommended for everyday life unless you are hoping for a bed in the cardio ward but it does remind us that treats in life are important whether they be food related or other things. And good food is always worth it.

You need clear goals. One of the parts I enjoy on Masterchef is where the contestants discuss what their “food goals” are. Some of them are quite predictable – food writer, chef, have their own restaurant etc. I have noticed, however, that the ones that seem to improve the most over the course of the show are the ones who work out what direction they want to go in and work for it. If you know where you are headed, you know which direction to move in. Also works in life.

Growth is key – every time someone leaves and just now in the final they recap how far the competitors have come. The winners (not just the ultimate winner) learn and grow. They listen to what they are told, they practice, they apply. That’s how life should be. Grow and learn. Practice the things you aren’t good at.

Be prepared. I am amazed that, after 3 seasons, people still go on the show with no idea how to cook various types of seafood and game or how to make basic condiments like mayo. To be fair, I can’t do any of these either but I’m not competing in an “all round” cooking show either. They watched the other seasons, they know what the contestants have to do and yet so many of them dont prepare by ensuring they know ALL the basics, that they have the knife skills, that they have studied up on the types of unusual things they’d have to do. They are really good at a particular type of cuisine and go in on that basis forgetting they are required to have excellent general skills. The more they prepare, the further they get – and that includes while they are on the show. Both Michael and Kate were known in the house for practicing things they learned and being prepared to use them. How prepared are you for your life?

Well the show is over and Kate was victorious. Both of them deserved to win and win or lose Michael has a very bright future in front of him. I do wonder if Kate is now prepared for the roller-coaster her life is about to be. Her youngest certainly seemed a bit over it all.

Congratulations to them both and to all other contestants who are smart enough to springboard off their time on the show into doing what they wanted. I know my friend G will be lining up to buy a book from Hayden and to watch his show 😉

So, what did you learn?


One thought on “What I learned from Masterchef

  1. I would like to berate channel 10 for their ridiculous programming, I’ve never been so annoyed. Although, I may or may not have used the break to make my dinner, shower and iron my clothes for work on Monday so it was pretty productive. I purposely changed the channel before I did all of that though, just so that Renovators wouldn’t get have me as a ‘viewer’. Actually, I have no idea how that whole process works – how do they know how many people are watching?
    Anyway, I loved this post Shaggy – very observational and astute. Plus, I have to admit that the facebook commentary that we had for many of the shows was one of my favourite parts of watching.

    I’m ready for my boyfriend Hayden’s book and tv show now. Where the hell is it already?

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