"A Pretty Tough Pill To Swallow": Tim Bone Farewells The 'MasterChef' Competition Ahead Of The Grand Finale
It was an absolute race to the finish in Season 11's final pressure test, and each of the final four gave it their all.
As the judges let Tim, Larissa, Tessa and Simon know that the semi-final would be a recreation of a Peter Gilmore dish, you could practically feel their fear radiating through the kitchen.
But it wasn't just one of Peter's White Coral the awesome foursome would have to recreate -- but four. They'd also only have two hours to crank out the four dishes.
With only five components -- a white chocolate mousse, prune ice cream, prune jam, chocolate ganache and an Oloroso caramel whip-- the dish isn't the most complex, but it was definitely a major challenge.
Unfortunately for fan-favourite Tim Bone, Peter's White Coral dessert meant the end to his time in the 'MasterChef' competition.
Speaking to 10 daily following his elimination, Tim admitted he wasn't thrilled at the idea of taking on a Peter Gilmore creation, despite being in awe of the executive chef of Quay and Bennelong.
"It fills you with fear knowing from past seasons what he brought in, all his miraculous desserts," Tim said, "I knew we were up for a really tough task.
"Desserts scare me at the best of times," he added.
With 40 steps, the judges explained that within the first 15 minutes of the challenge, the contestants would need to already be at step 10.
"There was that whole pressure, in that first 15 minutes, if you weren't up to that stage you knew you weren't going to have a finished dish," Tim said.
It was a massive push for all of the top four, and for Tim it looked as if he was onto a good thing, pacing ahead of the others in "the Bone zone", but nearing the end of the challenge he began to hit a few hurdles.
Having to remake his Oloroso whip after the first split, it was ultimately his white chocolate mousse which did him in. Collapsing, the mousse didn't hold the same lightness Peter's did. Still, it was an incredibly difficult decision for the judges, having to find fault in four excellent recreations of Peter's dish.
"They said there wasn't much in it," Tim said, "I just kept going over it in my head -- you play it through your mind, 'What if I had done it a bit differently? What if I had read the recipe wrong?'"
Not only did Tim find himself going over his last pressure test in his head, but knowing the grand finale was just a day away, hearing that the final three would be creating their own menus, seemed to only worsen the blow.
"It was pretty tough, getting so close to the finale and just not quite getting there. It was a pretty tough pill to swallow," he told 10 daily.
"I love Larissa, Tessa and Simon and they did a fantastic job, I absolutely think they deserve to be in the finale," he said, "I never thought I'd make top four but I did and I can be proud of that and really want to make the finale."
Since his time in the 'MasterChef' kitchen, things have changed for Tim.
First of all, there's the physical change the competition brought on.
"I dropped about 15 kilos since Christmas," he said. "It's been an added bonus in the competition. I thought I'd put on weight -- being a cooking competition -- but I worked out heaps in the gym in the house."
Using exercise as a way to decompartmentalise from the intense nature of the competition, Tim said it helped him drop a few kilos -- adding that the 'MasterChef' house being alcohol-free probably helped just as much.
Physical changes aren't the only new chapter for Tim. "I've resigned from my job at the primary school," he said, adding it was a very tough decision to make.
"I had been at that school for 11 years, but I felt like I needed to try and see where this 'MasterChef' momentum could take me," he said, "I felt I couldn't give 100 percent to the school and chase my food dream at the same time."
While he still wants to keep his connection with the kids at the Ballarat school he worked at for more than a decade -- promising to go back and do some more cooking with them -- Tim's already starting to pursue his dreams.
Working on setting up his market stall for gourmet toasties, Tim's also putting the work in to have some pop-ups in the near future, adding that he's looking to take "every opportunity" that comes his way.
"It's exciting, but it's scary," he admitted. "I'm really looking forward to seeing what comes next.
"I know the judges say 'MasterChef' is a springboard for what comes next and I've got a renewed confidence in myself to really push myself out there."
MasterChef Australia Grand Finale airs Tuesday, July 23 at 7.30pm. Only On 10 And WIN Network. Missed an episode? Catch up on 10 Play or 10 All Access!
Featured image: Network 10.