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Interview: WTF? Gareth Whitton told us there’s no running water in the Dessert Masters kitchen

Plus, he dished a whole bunch of BTS tea

The cast of Dessert Masters 2023 was made up of some of the best chefs in the nation, so naturally one would assume that they’d have cooking basics, like running water, for example.

But, apparently, that wasn’t the case, as Dessert Masters 2023 winner Gareth revealed during a post-win interview with Chattr.

“The sink is actually filled with cold water because the whole warehouse isn’t plumbed,” he said.

Gareth explained that there were drums of water kept under the sink, and the water would be pumped up. However, the drum wouldn’t always have enough water for the entire cook.

“It happened all the time. They’re pumping the water up through the faucet out of the tap. If you ran out of water, the [producing] team would have to come through with a big forty-gallon drum and swap it out halfway through.”

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The crew replacing the water had to avoid the cameras

While the water issue sounds like enough of an obstacle, Gareth explained that simply replacing the drum wasn’t the only barrier.

“The guys couldn’t be getting in the line of the camera. So they would have to crawl under the benches and empty your sinks or wait until the cameras were somewhere else.”

Gareth said that the cameras also posed an issue for him during his cook, as when he was moving around the kitchen or heading to the pantry, he had to always be careful to avoid running between the crew.

“I hated the fact that there’s a side of the kitchen that you can’t actually run down because it’s full of cameras but the viewers obviously don’t see that. That’s why bench selection was so key.”

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Gareth had to pretend to stay busy until the cook time was up

Almost every episode of Dessert Masters and it’s sister series MasterChef shows the contestants furiously running around the kitchen until the last second of their cook time.

However, Gareth admitted that he tended to finish his cook well before time was up, and was asked to look busy.

In the Semi-Final I had ten minutes left and I just stood around,” he said. “My bench was spotless and [the producers] were like, “Can you leave some stuff on your bench please? We need to make it look organic, so when you’re plating up it still looks like you’re in the middle of a cook.”

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Gareth joked that he’d rather the show let him clear away his mess once he’d finished and instead pretend that he was a “really clean cook”.

“That would be a lot nicer image for me, thank you,” he laughed, before joking: “If anything, I probably could have gone and helped Kirsten take the paper off the bottom of the birdcage.”

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