THE anxious wait is over for a Port Elizabeth cooking pair who have made the final cut of Justin Bonello’s homegrown television hit, Ultimate Braai Master.
The Fire Feeders, previously known as the Eccentric Fire Feeders, have not only made the grade for the show, but are the only team from the Eastern Cape to do so.
Braai master Stuart Smith, 42, and braai buddy Bretten-Anne Moolman, 45, said they were thrilled when they received the good news. “We are both relieved and excited about having made it this far,” Smith said.
“We are going to give this our all and make our province proud. And we cannot wait to showcase the Eastern Cape’s talent.”
Mother-of-three Moolman said: “I was in a shopping centre and had a bottle of mayo in my hand when I got the call from the show’s producers [last week].
“After I hung up, I realised I had put five more bottles of mayo in my shopping trolley.”
The pair first impressed the judges at the first round of Port Elizabeth auditions, held last month at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s north campus, with their medley of seafood starters.
Smith, a fisherman by trade, and Moolman, an art teacher, served the judges taramasalata, a haddock risotto and roosterbrood, among other delicious dishes.
This propelled the pair to the second round of auditions in the Friendly City, in which Eastern Cape contestants were taken through their paces at Capsicum Culinary Studios kitchens. Smith said: “I can’t say much, except that being in a professional kitchen was different compared with cooking outside. Also, our product knowledge was tested.”
Smith and Moolman are among 14 other teams of two who will go on a culinary road-trip of a lifetime in a quest to be crowned the next Ultimate Braai Master.
Show media assistant Nicki Austin said: “We are going to start filming in May and the show will go on air in September.” – Xolisa Phillip