‘MasterChef New Zealand’ Season 5 Begins, Announces Top 15

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By Anne Lu | February 3, 2014 12:28 PM EST

“MasterChef New Zealand” has commenced its fifth season on Sunday with its first ever duos competition. Hundreds of hopefuls attempted to receive a coveted apron, but only fifteen pairs were successful.

Judges Josh Emett, Simon Gault, and Ray McVinnie sampled two dishes each from the hopefuls, crushing dreams of several duos in the process when their offering didn’t impress their discerning palate.

But while there were those who went home disappointed, there were also those who were ecstatic.

“This to me is what MasterChef is about,” Gault said after sisters Kasey and Karena’s creamed paua ravioli and salted caramel fondant. “Two people from a provincial town who cook like rock stars.”

The ultimate winner, or winners in this case, will not only take the bragging rights that come with having the MasterChef New Zealand title, they will also sign an exclusive MasterChef cookbook deal as well as hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of prizes.

On Monday’s episode, Queen of Australian cookery Donna Hay returns to the MasterChef NZ kitchen to set a challenge for the contestants. Episode two will air on TV ONE at 7:30pm.

The Top 15:

The sisters:
Shelley Robinson and Trudie Robinson (Tauranga)
Kasey Bird and Karena Bird (Maketu)
Malenie Sim and Cerry Sim (Auckland)
Verena Doolabh and Tanisha Kemp (Melbourne and Mt Maunganui)
Fiona Marris and Bronwyn Bijl (Christchurch)

Brother and sister:
Matt Crammond and Courtney Crammond from Auckland and Christchurch

Parent and child:
Nicola Shearer and Jordan Shearer, mother and daughter from Lower Hutt
Donna-Marie Sullivan and Jonathan Odering, mother and son from Dunedin

Partners:
Sam Dolbel and Collette Lochore from Waimauku
Elizabeth Marshall and Jennifer Clark, former partners from Wellington

Friends:
Jaimi Stodler and Bec Stanley (Queenstown)
Thiago de Almeida Schaich and Janaina Mendes (Auckland)
Paul Harrison and Brigitte Kriehn (Auckland)

Flatmates:
Glynn Rudolph and James Culleton (Wellington)
Catherine Chen and Jack Tan (Whakatane)

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