How did it feel when you found out you were leaving the show
"I was obviously disappointed, but I had a feeling it was coming. I had a gut feeling and I thought I would be.... lucky to survive. That's how I felt."
You struggled for a few weeks on the show. Did you still think you had a chance of winning?
"Last week before this show, I had a real disaster with the duck. But after that, if I could get through the vegetarian episode, if I could pick it up again, perhaps then I would have a chance. But I always knew it would be difficult with the veggie food."
You didn't appear to enjoy the meat ban this week. How was it?
"It was pretty much my worst nightmare. I'm quite a fussy eater at the best of times, so to take away the best bit and my favourite bit of meals was a disaster really. I knew it was going to be tough. I did learn quite a bit though and I think if I had my time again on a vegetarian episode, I would do things differently. So at least I learned that from the experience."
How difficult was the circus challenge?
"These tasks are always hard because they take you out of your normal environment. They take you into someone else's kitchen and you have to deal with wobbly tables in a tent with loads of other people around and only two hours to complete everything. You just have to work like a mad man. It's crazy."
Are there any similarities in being a musician and being a chef?
"I'm very lucky to have the job that I have, but it's taken a lot of hard work and playing the cello every day and working really hard. There is an element of natural ability, but there's also a lot of hard work involved and I think cooking is very similar. You see these chefs at the top of the game and it hasn't just happened for them. They have had to work hard and graft. Going into the professional kitchen last week, you could see how hard people work to make food for people that they won't even make much money on. Also the pressure to deliver in a concert, where you have to perform on the night, is very similar to making that meal for a paying customer. It has to be right each time."
Will you keep on cooking or are you sticking with music?
"With the show only just coming to air, I'm taking stock at the moment. In an ideal world, I'd like to combine the two, but I'm not quite sure how! I'm still cooking and probably more than before and more adventurous, so we'll just have to see what happens."
You made the nation wince when you chopped your finger two weeks ago. How is it now?
"At the time, I was very scared actually. At the end of the day if I can't win MasterChef and I can't play the cello anymore, what have I got left? But thankfully it has healed. It took a while before I could play again, but the sensation is back in the finger. It does feel slightly different now and it was a scary moment, but I'm fully functioning now."
What dish were you most proud of on the show?
"I think without doubt it would be the halibut dish for the past winners. I think I peaked rather early with that one! It was show two and I felt rather comfortable that day. I managed to keep my cool on that occasion, but unfortunately I wasn't able to keep that up."
The show's new format has divided opinion. What was it like to be part of?
"I don't really see much difference in the format other than the filming at the auditions. But the rest of the series is the same sort of challenges; it's just one group of people doing them. I don't really understand why there was such a fuss about it; it's still the same MasterChef programme. I would imagine it was just as intense for previous contestants as it was for us."
Who are you tipping to win?
"Ooh, that's tricky. I can give you a couple. I think Tom and Annie were very good. Those two will probably go right to the end. Tim could possibly do it as well, but you never know with Tim. He could hit the jackpot or come up with something really weird! But I'm really happy for any of them to win because I got on with all of them. I never felt like I was competing against them, I felt like I was competing against myself to do my best."
MasterChef continues next Wednesday at 9pm on BBC One.
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