MasterChef semi-finals underway today!

Four teams of junior chefs battle it out for a place in the finals
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The Emirates Towers team plates up.
The Emirates Towers team plates up.
The Hilton team adds the finishing touches to a dish.
The Hilton team adds the finishing touches to a dish.

 The competition is heating up at the first ever UAE Anchor MasterChef event, with four teams of junior chefs securing their place in the semi-finals.

After an intense two days of competitive cooking in Dubai this week, the teams — consisting of one hot kitchen chef and one pastry chef — were whittled down from a total of twenty contenders from top kitchens including Jumeirah Emirates Towers, Radisson Blu Hotel Dubai Deira Creek, Grosvenor House Dubai, Coral Boutique Hotel, Emirates Golf Club, The Westin Dubai and Hilton Dubai Jumeirah Resort.

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The semi-finals today will see Ovin Rubello and Thirumala Murugan from Hilton Jumeirah up against Bernard James and Hussein Deniz from Grosvenor House, while Edward Mair and Jay Williams from The Westin will compete against Demas Tri Saputra Latief and Dharshana Yatiwawala from Emirates Towers.

The teams will face a 'mystery ingredients' round to test their imagination, inspiration and culinary flair to secure their place in the final.

Peter Hallmanns, advisory chef for event organiser Fonterra brands, the skills demonstrated in the first round had shown some exceptional talent.

“The teams had to prepare a three-course meal under a lot of time pressure, but the variety of signature dishes really emphasised the remarkable abilities of the chefs,” he asserted.

“It must be very reassuring to the hotels and restaurants in the UAE and indeed the GCC that not only is this level of talent available now, but with the right encouragement, it will be there for the future of the region."

The four-day competition is taking place at Fonterra’s new kitchen facility, the Culinarium, with dishes judged by Peter Hallmanns, Jacob DeKlerk
and Alen Thong.

Today’s victorious teams will go through to tomorrow’s final, after which the winning team will receive AED 10,000 and one year's worth of media exposure in conjunction with Fonterra.

The team in second place will receive AED 5000.

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