‘MasterChef New Zealand’ Eliminates First Couple

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By Anne Lu | February 4, 2014 7:38 AM EST

“MasterChef New Zealand” has declared its first casualties. A day after premiering its fifth season on air on Sunday, the top-rating cooking reality show has eliminated its first couple.

Friends Thiago de Almeida Schaich and Janaina Mendes from Auckland failed to impress during the first challenge, and were subsequently eliminated.

The pair, as well as fourteen other couples, were tasked to create two Little Black Forest Cakes for guest judge Donna Hay.

As per the mechanics of the challenge, the pairs would split up to bake the cakes. One contestant from each team would tackle the cake during the first hour, while their teammate would make another during the second hour.

Thiago and Janaina were confident that they would nail the task easily. As Thiago said, “ I have baked before, I like to be precise, so – no problem!”

But baking with a time limit did not appear to be his forte; he was rushing to get the cake done halfway his time. In his rush, he forgot to add sherry, the key ingredient.

Hay, as well as judges Josh Emett, Simon Gault, and Ray McVinnie, thought their cakes were a disaster.

“There’s no cherry or kirsch taste, so it’s just a chocolate cake,” Hay observed.

Judge Josh Emett called their cakes “poorly made,” “boring,” and “flat.”

“They are the worst cakes of the day,” he told them.

Thiago and Janaina landed in the bottom two with flatmates Glyn Rudolph and James Culleton before unsurprisingly getting eliminated from the show.

“I was here to be a MasterChef,” Janaina said, adding that it’s the end of a dream for them.

Later on, a solo Thiago spoke with MSN NZ to talk about their experience on the show.

The couple only knew each other a month before the show started, which, Thiago thinks, was their biggest challenge together.

“As we literally just met one month before the programme, we didn’t have time to prepare and we didn’t know how the other would respond during stressful moments. Also we didn’t have a clue about strengths and weaknesses of each other.”

He replied when asked what they learnt from being on the show: “I think being on MasterChef you are aligned with the best in the country and the possibility to exchange ideas and learn from each other is simply awesome.”

Watch the episode here.

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