Chloe Carroll Almost Made It To The End Of Her MasterChef Journey
"I was always in two worlds. I wanted to be with my family, and I wanted to stay on the show."
The pressures of the MasterChef kitchen are one thing, it's another to have the mental and physical stamina to make it through a pressure test that lasts close to a whopping five hours.
That's what Chloe did on Monday's episode, but after making it to the final five, she was the first to leave the competition during Finals Week.
"You've got adrenaline pumping through you," Chloe told ten daily about surviving the mammoth pressure test, "and the prospect of going home hanging over you. Everything is heightened, but by the end of the cook you're completely drained."
The 28-year-old described one of the hardest challenges of her final cook was the length of time she was away from her family, both the one waiting for her at home and the one she made in the competition.
"It's so hard being away from family," she explained, "especially when you've got kids".
"All of the mums and dads [in the competition] relied on each other for mental support. When you get close to the end and you don't have those people... mentally, it's harder. You've got to continuously push yourself."
Attempting to recreate Ashley Palmer-Watts' sherried marron, which included a whopping 90 steps in the recipe, Chloe's knew her dish wasn't up to par as she was plating, after seeing that the textures were slightly off.
Much like what fellow recently-eliminated contestant Reece said as he faced the chop last week, this close to the finish line the judges are forced to nitpick dishes down to the smallest errors. Chloe and Sashi both struggled with the dish, but ultimately the judges felt the balance was off on Chloe's.
Despite leaving the competition, Chloe was still elated with how far she had made it, but was also even more excited to be reunited with her family.
"I graduated [with a Bachelor's degree in Nutrition] in 2016, and thought I'd apply for MasterChef, never thinking I'd make it, seeing the skills that others had in previous seasons. And I made it! I was beside myself."
"I was always in two worlds. I wanted to be with my family, and I wanted to stay on the show. It was confusing, but it was an amazing experience and -- coming back to my kids -- it's like no time had passed."
Now that she's out of the kitchen and back to real life, Chloe has been working on her plans for the future, which include opening a cooking school, as well as creating proposals that will let kids "get back in the kitchen... to reconnect with where their food comes from".
For Chloe, MasterChef confirmed her love for the two important things in her life: her family and her love of nutritious food. Meanwhile, her kids are still a little starstruck.
"Every time they see my face in the ads they're like 'Mum!!!'... They don't act like that when I'm right there in the room," she laughed.
"Everyone always asks if I'd do it again, it was a wonderful, wonderful experience. I'd definitely do it again. In a heartbeat."