Shiro, Lower Parel, Mumbai: A not so magical preview of MasterChef Australia

Thai rice noodles salad with cashewnuts
Thai rice noodles salad with cashewnuts

If you like food or go a step ahead and call yourself a ‘foodie’ but don’t watch MasterChef – especially the original Australian version – then in the eyes of many you may have committed a grave crime.

Since the first season, this show has been a run-away hit and inspired many chefs and home cooks across the world. I belong to the first category of people though and have never for some reason watched MasterChef. However, I’ve heard so much about the show that when Season 6 launched on Star World Premiere a couple of months ago, I vowed to make the effort and live stream each episode. I gave up after the 5th one.

IMG_7552The reason I am sharing all of this is to highlight how excited I was when I got the chance to attend the preview of MasterChef 6 last week at Shiro. On the cards was a specially designed menu by Chef Rahul Hajarnavis in honour of the show’s launch. Frankly speaking, I was more excited about the menu than the preview.

Now, everyone likes to nibble on something when watching TV and this is especially true if you are watching a food show! Unfortunately, this wasn’t the case for this hungry room of food bloggers. The format of the event dictated that we watch the entire one-hour preview before the food started to make an appearance. This meant that by the time the food did come everyone was starving and there was no patience for those that wanted to take pretty pictures. Most of the food disappeared from the platters before a shot was framed.

Sticky Asian Chicken wings
Sticky Asian Chicken wings

On the plus side I did get to nibble on about 3 or 4 things before the service staff seemingly disappeared. The Sticky Chicken Asian Wings and the Korean Chilli Potatoes were my favourite of the lot. The chicken fell off the bone and was nicely spiced. It would have been great to get some creamy sauce to dip the wings in but I gobbled them up nevertheless. The potatoes too were well spiced and quite addictive – if only the platter was bigger so that I could have gone in for seconds.

In comparison, the Non Veg Maki and Chicken and Shrimp Hanoi Rolls were quite average. The Maki were of the mini sized variety where the meat is so tiny that you can never quite taste what it is. The rolls were nice but it would have been good to have had some spicy sauce to dip them in as the oyster sauce that the chicken and shrimp was flavoured with could barely be tasted.

Maki Platter
Maki Platter

The star of the night for me was the Crispy Spicy Avocado Maki. I’ve never thought to fry avocado before and was quite amazed and how delicious it tasted.

All in all, the evening was good because I got to meet my fellow bloggers after a long time. Sadly, most of us tuned out from the show after about thirty minutes. I wish that the food had been given more of a chance to shine that night and that we had got to try the entire menu that had been advertised – my taste buds longed to try the Fish in Chilli Mustard and the Salt & Pepper Tofu which sadly never made an appearance to my side of the room that night.

On the plus side, Shiro has come up with a special brunch menu that is available until November 18th – I may just go back for that Crispy Avocado.

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