MasterChef is back and the kitchen is open for 56 of the UK’s most outstanding amateur cooks to battle it out for the 2019 title. John Torode and Gregg Wallace will spend the next seven weeks and 24 episodes putting the contestants through their paces as they search for one exceptional home cook - worthy of being crowned MasterChef Champion 2019.
Out of the thousands who applied, this series’ amateur cooks have made it through to compete over four weeks of heats, ready to produce some of the most inspiring, exceptional and unusual food ever seen on the series.
In this first episode, the first seven hopefuls need to pull out all the stops to prove to judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace that they have the potential to rise above the rest to become MasterChef 2019 Champion.
This year sees the return of the MasterChef Market, stocked full of the best quality produce from across the world including meat, fish, fruit, vegetables, nuts, pulses, grains and dairy. The challenge is to invent and then cook one dish using anything from the market. This time, the featured ingredients include brown shrimp, mussels, mackerel, beef mince, and pork tenderloin. They have an hour and 10 minutes to dazzle the judges and prove they are good enough to stay in the competition. The stakes are high in this round and it’s important to choose wisely because after tasting all seven dishes, John and Gregg will decide which four cooks are good enough to stay, while three cooks will be sent straight home.
The four remaining cooks now have one more challenge standing between them and a Quarter Final place. They must cook two courses that will excite not just John and Gregg, but also some very special guests. Some of MasterChef’s most inspiring winners, finalists and contestants, who have all gone on to work in the food industry, return to judge the food of this year’s new contenders to the throne.
In tonight’s Heat, the contestants must attempt to impress last year’s MasterChef Finalists –Nawamin Pinpathomrat, David Crichton and 2018 MasterChef Champion, Kenny Tutt.
After the four hopefuls have cooked, John and Gregg will decide which three contestants deserve to take the next step in the competition and go through to Friday’s Quarter Final.
In a competition where only the food matters, these amateurs will need to be good to survive - taking their first step towards being crowned MasterChef Champion 2019.
Judge John Torode
Judge Gregg Wallace
Tonight, seven more amateurs try to prove to judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace that they have the potential to be the 2019 MasterChef Champion.
This year sees the return of the MasterChef Market, stocked full of the best quality produce from across the world including meat, fish, fruit, vegetables, nuts, pulses, grains and dairy. The challenge is to invent and then cook one dish using anything from the market. This time, the featured ingredients include smoked haddock, chicken thighs, pork mince, chorizo, Parma ham and tiger prawns. They have an hour and 10 minutes to dazzle the judges and prove they are good enough to stay in the competition. The stakes are high in this round and it’s important to choose wisely because after tasting all seven dishes, John and Gregg will decide which four cooks are good enough to stay, while three cooks will be sent straight home.
The four remaining cooks now have one more challenge standing between them and a Quarter Final place. They must cook an impressive menu that will excite not just John and Gregg, but also some very special guests. In this second Heat, the contestants must attempt to impress the MasterChef Finalists from 2015 – Tony Rodd, Emma Spitzer and Champion Simon Wood.
After the four hopefuls have cooked, John and Gregg will decide who has what it takes to go through to Friday’s Quarter Final. In a competition where only the food matters, these amateurs will need to be good to survive - taking their first step towards being crowned MasterChef Champion 2019.
Judge John Torode
Judge Gregg Wallace
It’s the first Quarter Final of the series and the six talented heat winners have no time to rest on their laurels as they continue to fight for their place in the competition.
In the Critic’s Test, the week’s best amateurs will be put through the mill with a seriously daunting test set by one of the country’s toughest food critics. Tonight’s brief has been set by William Sitwell.
His challenge for the amateur cooks is to make an exceptional dish using game.
After cooking their dish based on this brief, the contestants stand before William Sitwell and judges John and Gregg, to hear, face-to-face, what they think of their dish and whether they’ve managed to rise to the challenge and fulfil the expectations.
At the end of this Quarter Final, the best cooks will go through to Knockout Week, taking another step closer to being crowned MasterChef Champion 2019.
Judge John Torode
Judge Gregg Wallace
Guest Judge William Sitwell
Episode 1 – Hayley and Rinia
How do some people stay slim despite never dieting and appearing not to exercise? In this series Sabrina Grant examines the lives of slim people who don’t stick to a fitness regime or seem to worry about what they eat. They don't think they do anything differently from anyone else. With the help of private detectives and secret cameras this series unpicks their every move and morsel to find out what determines their size. With Britain in the middle of an obesity crisis what simple tips can we learn from people who stay trim without trying? The slim people in this episode are teaching assistant and mum-of-three Hayley from Eastbourne, who’s an unashamed chocaholic with a busy lifestyle, and Rinia from Surrey, who wonders why she manages to stay in shape in spite of her takeaway diet.Series Prod/Dir: Nick Aarons; Presenter: Sabrina Grant; Exec Prods: George Waldrum, Andy Dunn; Prod Co: ITN Productions
Today three detached properties in York compete to be chosen for the Friday final of the Best House in Town: A Victorian cottage with its roots in the local past. A 1960’s farmhouse given a new lease of life. And a 1980’s bungalow where time travels inside.
Today four apartments in York go head-to-head in order to impress the 5 local judges and be chosen to compete in this week’s final of the Best House in Town: A modern penthouse with a killer view; A split level flat with a very sweet history; A new-build that takes the judges down ‘the rabbit hole’; And a Georgian flat built in the shadow of York’s medieval walls.
Today it’s the turn of Semi-detached properties to battle it out to compete in this week’s final of the Best House in York: A two-up, two-down, 1930’s home reinvented for the modern taste; Another 1930’s home more traditionally restored; and a 1970’s communal build, with some surprises from its past.
Today, three York ‘wildcard’ properties are thrown into the mix, and dazzle the judges into being selected for the final of the Best House in Town: An eco-friendly dream home designed for the future; A converted barn renovated with a slick, modern twist; And a 5 story Georgian townhouse saved from the jaws of dilapidation.
Today, it’s the final of this week’s The Best House in Town. The winning homes from the four categories in York – the best detached, best apartment, best semi-detached and best wildcard property – are revisited by the judges. They’ll be given new insight into these magnificent homes while their owners get one last chance to impress. At the end of the day the judges must make their ultimate decision and crown only one of them The Best House in Town!
With exclusive access, this returning series follows the construction workers of Crossrail as they battle to finish the final stages of the new Elizabeth Line underground railway beneath the streets of London.
Costing over fifteen billion pounds and stretching 120km across the capital, this extraordinary construction project is one of the biggest in Europe and one of the most ambitious engineering feats in Britain since the time of Brunel.
Our cameras follow the engineers, technicians and train staff who are under pressure to complete their section of the project, including building and fitting out 10 brand new stations, learning to drive the new fleet of trains, and testing the 21-km twin tunnels beneath London, in a bid to make it safe for the public.
We join Danny O’Connell, Crossrail’s testing manager, as he leads a critical operation to launch the very first train into the new Elizabeth Line tunnels under London. Danny’s responsible for trialling and testing all aspects of the railway performance – from communications, CCTV and platform doors, to the trains, tracks and signalling systems. If Danny can’t complete all of the hundreds of tests needed to prove its safe and reliable, the railway won’t open on time.
We join charismatic Project Manager Lih Ling Highe who is tasked with finishing construction of the new Tottenham Court Road Station - the largest station on the entire line and future gateway to 200,000 passengers a day. Coming from a long line of engineers, construction is in Lih Ling’s DNA and in this episode, she must lead a team fitting out the station’s three tonne platform screen doors to prevent passengers from falling under a train.
In the financial heart of London, the Elizabeth Line’s new Canary Wharf Station looks to welcome up to 100,000 passengers a day. In charge of the station’s mechanical and electrical fit out is young engineer Felix Ahatty whose biggest task is to transport and install three huge 10-tonne ventilation fans. Hauling them through the city at night, and then getting them down through the station levels, is a complex mission, even with the help of cranes, rail systems, and ‘hover’ pads to push it into position.
We also join new recruit Rochelle as she trains to become a driver of the new 200m long, 90mph trains that will carry up to 200 million passengers a year. We follow Rochelle through each nail-biting step of the course - from simulator training to getting behind the wheel of a real 265-tonne train.
The episode ends with the shock news that the team fail to complete the Elizabeth Line on time. With the delay costing almost three million pounds a day, every hour is critical in the race to launch the railway.
In this episode, the pace hots up as the British and French tunnellers race towards the breakthrough point, 40 meters under the seabed. The process of building the Channel Tunnel claimed the lives of eleven tunnellers and highlighted the dangers inherent in this unique working environment.
Eventually on the 1st December 1990, British tunneller Graham Fagg and his French counterpart Philippe Cozette, smashed through the final section of rock linking a country with a continent for the first time since the ice age. After a combined drilling distance of fifty kilometres, the two tunnels were off by just thirty five centimetres. The French welcomed the British with champagne and canapés. On the British side there was only water and tea.
By 1994, the Channel Tunnel was open for business but in 1996 a catastrophic fire highlighted the dangers of operating a railway tunnel that’s 31 miles long. A lorry carrying animal fat caught fire as the train entered the tunnel heading for the Kent coast. Crippled by the heat, the overhead electrics failed, bringing the train to a halt. Remarkably, no one suffered serious injury and it was only afterwards that many realised how narrowly they’d escaped.
Over the years, the tunnel has shown extraordinary powers of resilience. For both British and French economies, it’s been a huge success as the number of people using the tunnel has increased while freight costs have reduced. Today, it stands as a testament to the 13,000 workers who toiled for six years to build one of the seven wonders of the modern world.
TIGER BITES, BURMESE KITCHEN, REALLY RICE – GRAB-AND-GO
Fred Sirieix oversees a battle for investment between three restaurant ideas, who think their take on flavoursome ‘grab-and-go’ food will secure them the chance for big-money backing to open on the high street.
First, they must pitch to four of the industry’s top investors for the opportunity to open for business in Manchester. The single idea, with the most investment potential, will be given a two-day trial to prove themselves worthy of the money they’re seeking. However, only those investors with the most passion and interest in the idea will follow it to Manchester.
This time, those pitching include ex-couple Scott de Lima, 29, and Lacey Miles, 28, who think their idea for giant Taiwanese bao buns, filled with fusion American fillings, Tiger Bites, is worth £575k. Scott and Lacey started dating in 2012, but broke up at the start of this year. With Tiger Bites already underway they have stayed civil and quickly developed a working relationship to keep the dream alive. They’re now asking for £575k to open their first restaurants, and take their signature Kung Fu Panda Baos, available in fried chicken and vegan options, to the UK high street.
Going up against them is Wincie Wong, 38, whose idea for a modern Burmese lunchtime outlet, Burmese Kitchen, was inspired by her mum’s dishes like Mama Wong's Mohinga –a fish stew with rice noodles served with yellow split pea crackers (beh kyaw), hardboiled eggs, coriander, chili flakes and a wedge of lime. Having grown up in New York, Wincie now lives in London. The lack of Burmese restaurants in London prompted her to learn her mum’s cookery, and after her mum passed away, Wincie has carried on her legacy with her supper-clubs. She’s looking for £100,000 to start Burmese Kitchen in its own space.
Finally, two friends, who think their grab-and-go vegan rice bowls, with meat topping options, Really Rice, is worth an investment of £250,000. Kyle Parker Graf (27) and Damian Grisi (27) met whilst studying hospitality management. With friends from all over the world, they shared dishes from their home countries and spotted one common denominator, rice. Their street food stall has been trading since March and they want it to go permanent, with dishes like Trip to Japan - purple jasmine rice, apple and potato sweet curry, ginger-tamari glazed tofu and salted edamame beans.
Each of the three ideas pitches to a panel of four investors, all looking to back the next hit ‘grab-and-go’ restaurant idea on the high street:
Jamie Barber is behind a number of successful restaurants including Hush, Cabana Brasilian BBQ and Haché Burger Connoisseurs. Having previously founded and co-owned restaurants including Villandry, Japanese restaurant Sake No Hana, and Italian casual dining brand, Kitchen Italia, his pedigree in backing winners in the food business is second to none.
Maurice Abboudi is an experienced operator and investor who has developed and sold several businesses in the sector. He was head of business development at Domino's Pizza and more recently was involved in the sale of a chain of 17 pizza sites to Pizza Express in 2016, and was chairman of an online ordering system for restaurants which was sold to UberEats in 2018. Maurice is currently an executive director of K10 Japanese restaurants.
Jane O’Riordan has been involved in the acquisition, growth and development of companies such as Nando’s, Gourmet Burger Kitchen, Pizza Express, Ask, Zizzi and others, as part of the Yellowwoods investment team, over the past 20 years. She is part of the team who grew Nandos internationally and throughout the UK. She has a 1st class BSc in mechanical engineering, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Will Shu is the founder and CEO of UK-based online food delivery company Deliveroo, which currently operates in 13 countries, and delivers from over 50,000 restaurants in over 500 towns and cities across the globe. In just six years, Deliveroo is now valued at £2bn.
In each episode the winning idea will then have two days in a brand new 50-seater restaurant, in the heart of Manchester’s bustling bar and restaurant district, to prove that their food, menus, pricing, service, team-management and business plans are worth the big money investment they’re asking for.
On the first night they will open for a half-price soft launch to the public, and the investors, before being grilled in detail on their numbers and business plans the following morning.
Finally, they will open for a full-priced lunch service, during which the investors must consider whether to invest or not. As the investors are in competition with each other, Fred will set them a deadline by which time they have to return to the restaurant if they intend to invest.
With final service over, the operators face an anxious wait with Fred to see if anyone returns. All they need is for one investor to walk through the doors and make them an offer, and their business fortunes and restaurant dreams will change forever.
Eight more privileged young Brits, who are accustomed to five-star hotels and private jets, learn about the other side of life as they spend a week with families on the breadline, helping to shop, work, clean and feed. Daryl is the student son of millionaire parents who live in Abu Dhabi, and has attended the most prestigious schools in the country. He owns a collection of classic cars worth a whopping £500,000, including an Audi A5 and an Aston Martin DB7. When Daryl goes shopping it’s mainly to Harrods, where he has his clothing picked by a personal shopper. This week, Daryl heads to North London to spend time with Daniel, Letitia and their two children. This family survives on benefits and Daniel’s student loan, leaving nothing left at the end of the month, so they must budget carefully to feed and clothe the whole family.
Daryl is used to having a maid cook and clean for him on a day-to-day basis, so he is in for a shock when it comes to regular chores like pegging out the washing. Despite their huge lifestyle differences, Daniel and Daryl bond, in particular when Daryl has to shop for and cook a traditional Polish meal.
Daniel and Letitia demonstrate to Daryl that, even though they have no money, they all still manage to have fun. When Daryl joins in one of their regular games of Twister, he realises that genuine entertainment doesn’t have to cost loads of cash.
After a packed few days, Daryl leaves the family having experienced a real taste of living life skint. His time with the family helps him understand how privileged he is and that money doesn’t always buy happiness.
20 year old Hollie Gazzard was stalked for months by her ex-boyfriend before he stabbed her 14 times in front of colleagues and clients at the hair salon where she worked. Her killer Asher Maslin was a good looking 22 year old charmer with the gift of the gab. In this moving documentary Hollie's close family and friends say neither they, nor Hollie knew of his abusive past. Yet he’d been arrested 23 times with escalating violence… Domestic abuse… Grievous bodily harm… He was a serial perpetrator. Initially he appeared good boyfriend material, but then his mask began to slip.
Ruth and Eamonn warn of the lethal dangers of purchasing cheap phone charger cables, an emotional reunion after 73 years for a Holocaust survivor who meets two residents of Ascot who welcomed him after the war, investigate the holiday scam of renting villas that don’t actually exist and Esther meets the most unusual guide for a unique tour of Manchester.