Exiting the competition after a gruelling challenge at Bennelong, Kylie’s Elimination was made all the more painful by the fact that the ‘Dessert Queen’ was undone by a dessert.
Given first choice of Guillaume Brahami’s dishes after the knife draw, Kylie safety in the game seemed assured. However, cooking a course you’re known for carries with it the burden of expectation, she explains: “When I got knife number one and was able to pick the dessert, I was reasonably confident I could replicate the dish. Although I knew that because I’m known for desserts there was a lot of pressure on me to smash the challenge.”
Despite the pressure, Kylie demonstrated remarkable composure throughout the challenge. While Ben was dropping steaks and Audra was getting into a pistachio panic, Kylie was keeping a cool head and knuckling down. “I did feel quite calm during the challenge,” she says, “although there were a million thoughts running through my mind while I was cooking!”
Unfortunately during the plating up of her dessert, Kylie began to suspect that something was amiss. Indeed, having over-whipped the eggwhites, her nougatine had curdled. “It didn’t look as smooth as Guillaume’s,” Kylie recalls, casting her mind back over those tense moments when it dawned on her that things had gone badly wrong. “My suspicion was confirmed when he came over and questioned me about the dish.”
Giving the judges little choice but to send her home, Kylie was understandably devastated by the nature of her exit, although delighted by Guillaume Brahimi’s offer of work experience at Bennelong. “It was really tough to be eliminated on a dessert. When Matt announced the verdict my heart dropped... and all I could think was I need to say thank-you but struggled because I was trying to hold back the tears. I was very grateful to receive the offer from Guillaume; I was chuffed that he could see some potential in me.”
From meeting her food idol Jamie Oliver (“it’s one of those things I’ll remember for the rest of my life”) to fine tuning her culinary skills (“I’ve learnt to exercise restraint when it comes to putting little ‘extras’ onto dishes… ahem, cornflakes), it’s been quite a ride for smiley Kylie. And as she begins the next chapter of her food life, it seems the sky really is the limit.
“I’m currently working alongside Darren Purchese from Burch & Purchese – a great place to learn all things sweet. I also have some pop up restaurants planned with some of the other contestants. I would still love to have my own dessert bar one day, and maybe even a book to guide people through cooking desserts and all things sweet – plus a few extra things…
I am just thrilled to now be working in an industry (food) that I love! I Can’t wait to see what the future holds!”