Luke Rhodes, who lives in Woodhouse and is a senior sous chef at the University of Sheffield’s Halifax Hall hotel, made it through to the Quarter Finals in the episode which aired yesterday, Wednesday, November 25.
The 26-year-old’s first child was born just days before he earned his place on the show but if there have been lots of sleepless nights since then he didn’t let it show as he cooked up a storm.
After a nervy start, where judge Monica Galetti winced as he butchered some scallops, he soon settled down and his food earned rave reviews.
In the skills test, Monica called his dish of scallops with a romesco sauce and marinated salad as ‘delightful’.
But it was in the signature two-course menu challenge that he really shone.
For his main course, he cooked pan-roasted canon of lamb with a pea puree, crispy lamb sweetbreads, asparagus, Jersey Royal potatoes and morels, served with a lamb and red wine jus.
Marcus Wareing praised it as ‘really delicious’, while Greg Wallace branded the lamb ‘stunning’.
His desert of pistachio cake with a sour cherry puree, compressed cherries, caramelised white chocolate, puffed rice, pistachio and cherry crumble and an aerated white chocolate mousse also impressed.
Despite a slight mishap with the mousse, Monica said the flavours worked ‘really well’, and Greg declared ‘you’re a talent’.
He was the first contestant to be put through to the quarter finals, due to air on BBC One tonight, Thursday, November 26, at 9pm.
Summing up his performance, Marcus said: “Luke hit a few hurdles but I think he’s a very talented chef.”
After making it through, Luke said: “The feedback really pushed my confidence up so, yes, I’m looking forward to the next round. Bring it on.”
During the show, he revealed that he is a professional wrestler on the side.
When asked by Greg, how that compares to working in the kitchen he claimed there were plenty of similarities.
"There’s the pressure you’ve got to perform in front of people, and if you don’t do a good job they will let you know about it. It’s pretty similar,” he said.