Rejoice, MasterChef is back! This time around it’s a mixed bag of ‘Professionals’ who have to cook for Gregg and friends and thankfully the format is little changed. Despite being an irregular at my local gym, Gregg “That’s a twist of a lemon and a chop of a chilli away from perfection, my friend” Wallace is now sporting an impressive paunch which on long shots can be seen barrelling proudly from beneath an oft-worn and ill-advised light blue V-neck.

Gregg Wallace

Gregg Wallace midway through his third trimester

His co-host, two-Michelin-starred chef Michel ‘Culinary Legend’ Roux Jnr still has the gaunt jaundiced pallor and empty unblinking eyes of a man who has recently been released from years of enforced captivity in a bricked up Austrian cellar. The sequence of him angrily polishing a shot glass before holding it up to the light and staring at it with demented intensity would be funny if it were not ever so slightly disturbing.

Michel Roux Jnr

New to the mix is Monica “Move it, get that garnish on the plate, NOW!” Galetti who manages to combine being both terrifying and gently sweet in a beguiling and weirdly sexy manner. Sometimes she turns up to the Eliminator Test power-clad in tailored leather and other times buried beneath unflattering ruffles and frills. On one occasion (thanks to bad continuity) she cycled rapidly between the two.

Monica Galetti

So far the contestants have been an varied bunch of wannabe Michelin-star chefs. One or two have been brilliant, most good to average to indifferent and some barely qualified to operate the microwave in a Havester. I love this programme more than is healthy. Perfect viewing.

The many faces of Michel Roux Junior

The many faces of Michel Roux Junior

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