A woman from Gilberdyke has taken part in the popular BBC cooking show, MasterChef.
Angela Long, 31, brought her unique love for foraging and wild cooking to the MasterChef competition. In an interview with Goole Times reporter, Amelia Cutting, Angela spoke about her experience on the show and what it has meant to her to have such strong support from the local community.
She said: “My daughter was having a tough time at school, we enjoy studying insects and foraging and she was misunderstood for it, so I just really wanted to show her that being different is okay. Really it was just about inspiring my kids, that’s the reason I decided to go on the show. MasterChef has always been a dream of mine as well.” Angela entered the competition during week five of the show’s current season, the final set of newcomers. For her first challenge, she had one hour and 20 minutes to make a signature dish for judges Gregg Wallace and John Torode. She incorporated her love for wild cooking and made pan fried sea bass with nettle gnocchi and pesto, pea puree, vegetables, a wild garlic oil, pancetta and a parmesan crisp. The keen chef said that her love for wild cooking and foraging goes back to her childhood.
She said: “My mum was a keen forager and I remember she would take us out looking for nettles and would cook with them. My daughters love doing it too. I am also into entomology, which is the study of insects and find that the two go hand in hand.” The dish received mixed reviews from the judges who appreciated the unusual aspects of it, but felt there was slightly too much going on. For the next challenge, the chefs had to make a sweet signature dish. Angela’s lemon meringue tart, with raspberry, sloe and hogweed coulis, candied rose hip, baobab seeds and a pot of jasmine and mango tea went down well with the judges, earning her a MasterChef apron and securing her a place in the next round of the competition. Angela said that the experience of cooking in front of the cameras was initially really daunting, but she eventually got used to it.
She said: “At first I was quite nervous of the cameras which surprised me because I’m normally not bothered by being on camera and talking and things, but once I started cooking I was very relaxed, despite being really conscious of the time!” The judges were keen to point out the uniqueness of Angela’s cooking style and ingredients. Speaking about this, she said: “I love that my style is unique. I felt it really put me in a league of my own and left little room for comparison with other people because some of my ingredients were wild and some weren’t.” Her unique flair for cooking using wild ingredients also showed in the next episode, which aired last Thursday. In this, Angela cooked a potato curry with nettles, flatbreads and courgette fritters and a garlic and lemon dipping yoghurt. Judge Gregg Wallace commented that he liked the flavour of the curry, but for other judge John Torode it wasn’t up to scratch and she sadly left the show after this round. Angela remains confident that her time on the show was an overwhelmingly positive experience. She said: “The best thing I took away from the show was realising my self-belief. All throughout the application process I was reminding myself that I can do it, and being on the show has confirmed that so that definitely was one of the best things I have taken away from it.”
In her professional career as a childcare worker, Angela has worked in many of the local schools around Gilberdyke, and said that the support she has received from them, from friends and family, and from local people she doesn’t personally know, has been overwhelming. She said: “The first night it was on, my aunt threw a screening party so all my friends and family watched it together. The kids were screaming, they absolutely loved seeing me on the tele and I’ve had so many lovely messages from people in the community too which has been really lovely.” To see Angela in action, or to watch other episodes of MasterChef, go to BBC iPlayer.
Local woman, Angela, has taken part in the BBC cooking show, Masterchef. Photo credit: Shine TV/BBC (28-04-05 SU)