MasterChef Recap – Front Page News

The good wife is trying to out ink me, her husband, who as well as helping run the Great Ocean Ducks farm sells the articles his computer comes up with to newspapers and magazines.

Below is an article Jodi wrote that ended up on the front page of Victoria’s biggest selling newspaper (See Smallprint below)

by Jodi Clarke (written exclusively for the Port Campbell Beacon, this blog and whoever reads it)

My girls love watching Masterchef and I also almost enjoy the program as much as Greg doesn’t!

Who would have thought drudging through duck poo, cleaning out hay and feeding ducks would turn into my moment in the lime light. Well sort of . . .

A few months ago I received a phone call from the project manager of Australia’s Masterchef program. She asked if Great Ocean Ducks could supply the show with duck for an episode they were filming in the area on local producers and their products.

It sounded good however we sell out of all our duck well prior to the delivery date and as far as I knew we didn’t have any duck spare – she was shocked when I told her this, however I said I would see what I could do. The program wanted 30 ducks but we were eventually able to supply them six.

We had the ducks delivered to their studio in Melbourne. Later that week the Masterchef lady called again to ask if I could be on the show! Filming was to be in Winchelsea during school holidays and I thought it would be a great opportunity for Madi and MIlla to see the show – with a bit of trepidation I agreed (believe it or not I’m not one for that type of thing).

One of the producers of the show explained that the contestants would be picking produce from farms around the Great Ocean Road to use for cooking in a challenge. The contestants would then be cooking off at a beautiful property in Winchelsea and the farmers would be eating and judging the food. Well I do love eating so I suppose I would be good at that.

We arrived on the day and straight away I got microphoned up (that’s TV talk) and a producer explained that not everyone would be expected to talk but that I would . . . Oh my goodness now I felt nervous.

Luckily for me as we were lead to the table – there were about 20 of us – I spotted some bottles of wine . . . Well there you go, ‘I will be right’ I thought and as I sat down the wine started getting poured (Emma, an English girl living with us at the time, was driving).

The table looked amazing and it was the perfect day for eating and drinking outside (this was autumn not winter): what more could you want except perhaps not to be fully intoxicated and on national television! By the time I’d had a couple of wines I didn’t care.

The judges sat down and had a talk with us and asked who everyone was. To my delight they all knew about Great Ocean Ducks and had many, many questions for me – I was feeling great.

The 1st team’s food arrived and it was all amazing; lobster, mussels, oysters, pork and beautiful vegetables, oh and did I mention wine? Yum, we ate (and drank) and discussed the food then came the 2nd team’s food, including the duck.

Now duck can be so hard to cook – we have found this and it is an excellant reason to eat it at a good restaurant. The duck skin was cooked to perfection but the flesh was over cooked: duck breast is meant to be cooked medium rare (much to my mum and her friend’s disgust).

My feedback was the only one from all the farmers that was going to be negative. Oh dear.

Anyway the judges all agreed with my comments and kindly suggested I shave my head and become next season’s Masterchef judge – I will await another phone call on that one!

Smallprint: this was the front page story on Victoria’s biggest selling paper – for audit purposes our claim is strictly confined to local papers/newsletters printed within 10km of the 12 Apostles on Victoria’s Great Ocean Road.