Entertainment & Arts

Masterchef defends souffle shots

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Media captionThe BBC said it "always cut back to the shot of the food as it was when first plated up"

Any suggestion that a Masterchef contestant was allowed several attempts to cook a souffle after it was shown deflated and then perfectly risen is "completely untrue", the BBC has said.

On 1 February, contestant Tom Rennolds was filmed serving a fallen souffle to judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace.

Wallace was then shown tucking into a risen souffle, declaring it "lovely".

The BBC said it "naturally deflated" by judging time but producers had cut back to a shot taken "as it was plated up".

"We always shoot the souffles as soon as time is called and cooking is finished," the corporation said in a statement.

Image caption The BBC said the shot on the right was taken after the souffle was plated up before it "naturally deflated", left

"Then filming of the judging continues, by which time souffles have naturally deflated."

"This doesn't affect the tasting or judging at all as the souffle taste remains the same and, of course, the judges have seen how it looks when first plated up."

The BBC made its statement after several newspapers wrote that the corporation had been "accused of faking scenes" in the show, although it was unclear who had made the accusations.

It has received no complaints about the programme.


At the start of the sequence, Rennolds, a 26-year-old plasterer from Silsden, West Yorkshire, was shown placing his collapsed chilli and pineapple souffle in front of the judges.

There then followed close-up shots of the risen souffle, before a spoon was shown being placed into the perfect pudding.

In the next shot, Wallace was shown taking a spoonful of the deflated dessert, before further shots of the unspoiled pudding were shown.

"That's lovely, that's lovely - dainty, elegant, beautiful," Wallace said.

Image caption Masterchef contestant Tom Rennolds remains in the competition

"Stunning, absolutely stunning - as light as a feather," Wallace's critique continued. "Sunshine sweet of pineapple and a little bit of chilli heat prickling your tongue. Stunning."

The BBC said contestants were always allowed to make more than one souffle.

"As time is called at the end of cooking they must put only one up to be filmed, tasted and judged," the statement added.

"We always cut back to the shot of the food as it was when first plated up as a reminder of how the dish looked before the tasting."

Tom Rennolds remains a contender in this year's Masterchef, which will conclude next month.

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