‘I Nearly Walked Out’: How Larissa’s Mum Saved Her ‘MasterChef’ Grand Finale Cook From Disaster
Although 'MasterChef Australia' 2019 winner Larissa Takchi scored an impressive 85/90 in the grand finale, there was a moment when she considered throwing the towel in.
As the minutes slipped away, Larissa found herself putting out fires (luckily not literally) as mentor Shannon Bennett began questioning her plan of attack.
“I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed, actually,” Larissa remarked as Shannon noted that she'd have to prep more marron to beef up her main course.
The unexpected prep of cooking and de-tailing almost double her original amount of shellfish meant that Larry fell way behind in trimming her bone marrow for the course that was to be sent out first to the esteemed diners including Curtis Stone, Kate Reid, Poh Ling Yeow and Kirsten Tibballs.
“Right now, I’m just feeling down in the dumps,” the usually unflappable Larry sighed.
But she kept going, propelled by some stellar scores for her entree (9,9,9) and main (9,9,10) until she hit a brick wall with one of her dessert elements.
The blackberry sorbet for her daring Szechuan Pavlova with beetroot dish had frozen into a rock-solid mound, refusing to budge when Larissa tried to coax it out of its container.
“I am paralysed in fear because I don’t know what to do,” she said, adding that she felt like she was "unravelling".
Speaking to 10 daily on the day of the grand finale, Larry explained that her trio of near disasters were a lot more dire than they seemed on TV.
"There were so many points in that cook, and you can probably see it on my face that I just wanted to walk out. I thought, ‘Nope!’" she told 10 daily.
"I was literally about to walk out, it was in my head, my face said it all. I was literally stepping towards the front to walk out," she added.
But luckily, the way the gantry was set up meant that she was surrounded by her loved ones, who weren't about to let her quit at the most crucial moment of the competition.
"My family was sort of just right there in the corner and they were all just screaming at me like, ‘Don’t you dare, don’t you dare!’
"They just saw my face and mum said to me, ‘You can do this’ and when she said that I was like, ‘Okay, you know what? I literally have nothing to lose. I’m just going to give it my all.'"
"If I did that [walk out] I would be so regretful of myself," Larry told 10 daily.
Larissa has previously mentioned how much she's learnt from her mother Jeanette -- who runs a cafe -- about backing herself and sticking to her guns.
And it seems her mum was the one who helped get her over the final mental hurdle to plate up her final three dishes in the 'MasterChef' kitchen.
Also in attendance was Larissa's aunty Adele, who pushed her niece into applying for the show in the first place while they were visiting a food and wine show in Sydney.
"There was a stall there, trying to grab people in to audition and I just walked past it. I just went voom! Not even going to look at it, [thinking] 'Where’s the food? I want to eat.
"And my aunty, she saw it, she literally grabbed my hand and said, ‘You are applying’.
While Larry was hesitant, thinking she "wasn't good enough" to be on the show, she filled out an application and history was made.
"So it was very much about me believing in myself but she saw what I had," she said of her aunty's influence.
We're so glad she did, Larry!