Could You Make A Gourmet Meal Using Office Kitchen Appliances?
Could there more to the humble office lunch than a hastily pressed toastie or a microwaved lasagne?
Our 'MasterChef' contestants are about to find out because tonight, they've been tasked with creating an exquisite meal cobbled together with three ~mystery~ office appliances.
But is it really possible to use your manky office kitchen for anything other than a quick cup of tea or zapping your leftovers in the microwave? Is there a way to emulate Rick Stein cooking in a villa in Tuscany when all you have is some running water, an old microwave and a sandwich press with remnants of cheese from 2015?
We decided to investigate the cooking hacks and office recipes of three women who know a thing or two about making the most of your lunch break, without taking a trip to the local takeaway joint.
The YouTube Queen Of Office Cooking
Steph deSouza might have earned the title of 'Macgyver' this season of 'MasterChef' but Ms Yeah is the true Macgyver of the office kitchen.
Ms Yeah -- real name Zhou Xioahui -- is a Chinese YouTuber who became famous for pissing off her co-workers in a range of creative ways. Ms Yeah fashions everyday office items into cooking utensils and comes up with bonkers ways to complicate her midday meal, and has over six million subscribers taking inspiration from her kitchen trickery.
She's barbecued beef with an iron covered in foil, made popcorn inside a Pepsi can, baked a whole chicken inside a flowerpot by her desk, and roasted fish with her bare hands. Apparently, the trick to not burning yourself is covering your palms in soap but we're going to go right ahead and ask that you PLEASE not try that one in the office for the sake of eating some crispy Barramundi at your desk.
A More Practical Approach To Cooking In The Office
Architect Rachel Maylor was sick of boring lunches, and unable to find time in her schedule to cook any of her work meals at home, she told Quarto Knows. The solution? Coming up with crafty ways to eat delicious, nutritious hot meals made entirely in her London office.
Rachel ended up writing a whole cookbook about the meals that make her co-workers envious, 'Made In The Office', in which she teaches fans how to use a kettle, microwave and sandwich grill to whip up some pretty gourmet plates.
And she doesn't shy away from seafood, either, although we're not sure what her co-workers have to say about hot fish and prawns steaming away near their desks.
But Rachel is sure as hell enjoying her prawn, chilli and coriander rice noodles, chorizo linguine with chilli salmon, and her microwave poached eggs florentine.
Cooking Advice From Someone Who Knows A Lot About Offices
Okay, so she's not cooking food in an actual office but Angela Kinsey did star in a show about an office and she's a very talented baker with her own YouTube show she hosts with husband Josh.
'Baking with Josh & Ange' is a delightful series that features guests including Kinsey's 'Office' co-star Rainn Wilson and TV host/actor Busy Philipps.
Josh and Ange's recipes are super simple and would be perfect to make the night before work, only needing a quick microwave at lunchtime. They've cooked up a one-pot Thai pasta, a one-pot orecchiette with sausage and fennel, and raspberry oat bars that would make an ideal morning tea snack.
We're curious -- and sceptical -- about what our 'MasterChef' contestants will cook up tonight for the Legends Week challenge. But we'd also like to see them cooking in an actual office and not the 'MasterChef' kitchen because half the battle is managing to avoid the scorn of your colleagues as you microwave some hot fish or stick skewered chicken in a kettle.