John Torode and Greg Wallace

John Torode and Greg Wallace

Masterchef is back for another series, starting tonight.

Gregg Wallace and John Torode will once again be watching over their new crop of eager contestants, who are all desperate to become the next 'masterchef.'

The first episode of the eight series will see the eight amateur chefs being subjected to the Invention Test in the first heat - when they have just 75 minutes to create a dish from scratch, which will impress the judges. Two of the contestants will be eliminated, before the final six face the stressful task of working a lunch service in professional kitchens, at two London restaurants. They must then prepare one more dish, which will help Gregg and John in their decision as to who will make it through to the main competition.

Gregg, a former greengrocer, is referred to as the 'ingredients expert' on the programme, whilst John is a professional chef, specialising in Australasian food, and runs several restaurants in London. The pair are on hand to offer advice (and criticism!) to the amateur chefs throughout the process. For many of them it will be their first experience of cooking under such pressure, and for such experts in the field, and it becomes clear how quickly the stress can take a hold and affect the outcome of their cooking.

The new series will debut a new format, after the show received criticism during series seven.

Tune in tonight (January 17), BBC One, at 9pm - but it may be best to have your tea well before it starts, and avoid the inevitibility of failure when you try to recreate the dishes from the show!

Georgia Smith