KELOWNA – Local realtor Kaila Klassen has made it to the top five on CTV’s Masterchef Canada.
Although Klassen’s team did not have to compete in the pressure test this time, she says the latest episode was still one of the most challenging she has faced so far.
“It was terrifying, ridiculous and overwhelming,” she says. "I would like to say that I respect every single cook that works in a line. I will never send something back ever again. Never.”
In the 12th episode, titled Line of Fire, the final six home cooks were tasked with delivering dinner service for celebrity judge Claudio Aprile’s own restaurant, Origin North.
“The amount of stress and agony I felt doing one tenth of what real chefs do every day doesn’t even equate,” she says. “It was definitely by far the absolutely hardest challenge I’ve ever done in my life.”
The teams were chosen by the judges, and Kaila found herself on red team with Tammara Behl and Mike Green. Klassen's last remaining rival, Eric Chong, was put on blue team with Pino Di Cerbo and Marida Mohammed.
At first, things did not go smoothly for the red team. Kaila and her team mates got off to a shaky start, with Tammara struggling with her plating. Although they eventually got her appetizers out, the entrees (Kaila’s station) took so long that one of their tables decided to leave the restaurant.
“I was devastated,” she says. “But I had to tell Tammara ‘let’s do this, let’s get back in the game and really impress (the judges).”
By the end of dinner service, the three celebrity judges chose red team’s dishes as the most attractive and delicious, which meant they would be spared the pressure challenge and were automatically in the top five.
“I was starting to think I was a bad omen,” Klassen says. “Apparently that’s not the case.”
Safe from elimination, Kaila and her team mates watched the three blue team members struggle to make a dozen gourmet donuts in only 60 minutes.
“I didn’t have to go in that gosh-darn pressure test, which was amazing,” Klassen says. “I have made donuts before though, so I probably would have kicked some butt.”
For a while it looked like Eric might be eliminated. Rather than make just three varieties as the judges had asked, he decided to make eight different kinds.
“I think he was just being cocky,” Klassen says. “Why risk screwing up eight donuts when you only have to make three?”
Despite his confidence, Eric’s donuts, including a bacon donut that failed to impress the judges, were put in the bottom two along with Pino’s. Marida’s dozen were clearly the best and she was sent upstairs with Kaila and the red team.
“I was surprised,” she says. “At this point in time, I think Eric is my strongest competition so I was obviously hoping he wouldn’t do fantastic but I was really happy that Marida did so well. She’s a beautiful person inside and out. You want to hate her but you can’t because she’s too sweet.”
In the end, Pino was sent home and on the way out the Masterchef door, he called out Tammara as his pick to win.
Masterchef Canada pits amateur cooks against each other in a series of team and individual cooking challenges. It airs on CTV Monday nights and also online.
Kaila's main rival, Eric Chong, was almost eliminated because of overconfidence in the pressure challenge.
Image Credit: Masterchef Canada/CTV
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