MasterChef winner: Tom Rhodes crowned 17th championon April 14, 2021 at 9:27 pm

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The broadcast of the show’s final was postponed following the Duke of Edinburgh’s death on Friday.

John Torode and Gregg Wallace

A former Nando’s worker has become the latest winner of BBC One’s amateur cookery series MasterChef.

Tom Rhodes was crowned champion after cooking a five-course lunch for lockdown heroes and serving up a dish at renowned restaurant Le Gavroche.

The 31-year-old from Newcastle saw off competition from fellow finalists Mike Tomkins and Lexina Anatole.

The final had been postponed following the death of the Duke of Edinburgh on Friday.

The BBC replaced scheduled programming with news coverage about Prince Philip, with EastEnders among the other programmes affected and BBC Four taken off air completely.

However, the scale of content devoted to the 99-year-old duke’s death reportedly sparked a large number of complaints.

The rescheduled show saw the final trio fight to impress hosts Gregg Wallace and John Torode with three signature dishes.

But it was Rhodes’ Japanese-infused starter, main and desert which proved victorious, making him the long-running programme’s 17th winner.

A trio of oysters cooked by Tom Rhodes

Complimented for “a style bordering on minimalism” by Wallace, Rhodes served a trio of oysters for the starter, including a beer-battered oyster with a Japanese sour plum mayonnaise.

For Torode, it was Rhodes’ main of reverse-seared ribeye steak topped with beetroot pickled in a Japanese seaweed and a wasabi leaf that was “modern” and “really very clever indeed”.

His desert of a lemon tart topped with black olive meringue also received universal praise from the hosts.

“What he’s absolutely brilliant at is European-style of cookery, with Japanese flavourings,” Wallace said.

Mike Tomkins, Alexina Anatole and Tom Rhodes are the BBC MasterChef finalists 2021

Speaking after filming ended, Rhodes said he would one day “love to write a cookbook and have a cookery school”.

“During the competition, I have realised my love for developing recipes and cooking for other people outside of my friends and family, so would love to do more of this after the show,” he said.

The latest series was produced under coronavirus restrictions, with many of the series’ traditional assignments adjusted to allow for social distancing.

First broadcast in 1990, MasterChef is one of the BBC’s longest-running reality series and has inspired the popular spin-off MasterChef: The Professionals. Applications for MasterChef 2022 have opened.

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