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The MasterChef Interview - Tim Kinnaird (2010 Finalist)

Tim Kinnaird - meemalee's kitchen interview

Next up in my series of MasterChef interrogations is everyone's favourite former doctor Tim Kinnaird. Tim is magical in many ways, not least because he is six foot three (for reals). All of us were rooting for him as he staggered up those stairs at the Tower of London, our hearts were in our mouths when his green tea sorbet didn't set, and we cheered when the Maharajah tried to adopt him. Let's face it, the man's adorable.

A quick glance at my Google Analytics shows me the question that appears to be on everybody's lips is:

"What did Tim do to his ribs on MasterChef?"
I don't know, people. I don't know. And I failed to ask him, so perhaps the answer will forever be beyond our reach.

Of course the other question on everybody's lips was "Why did the BBC call him a Children's Doctor?". Various media outlets sought to mock this choice of nomenclature, so here's the real story straight from the horse's mouth:
"Apologies for delayed response to the Paediatrician/Children's Dr thing. Thought it better to wait until it was all over. I've always introduced myself to children or young people as a children's Dr - I think it's a term they understand. Communicating clearly with children and families is something I always worked hard at. It was a joint decision with the TV company. It was a small decision. Sorry if it irritated anyone. Tim"
There you go. I hope you're all thoroughly ashamed of yourselves for being so bloody cynical about it. You b*stards.

Blueberry Macarons by Tim Kinnaird

meemalee's kitchen - The MasterChef Interview


Tim Kinnaird is a former consultant paediatrician in the imaginary town of Shipdham in the imaginary county of Norfolk. Other imaginary towns in Norfolk include Fakenham, Little Snoring and Pudding Norton. After reaching the MasterChef final this year, he may or may not be about to open a patisserie called Timminess, although personally I think he should call it TK Macs. He makes exceedingly good cakes.

Has there ever been a kitchen mishap that's driven you to tears?

It's only cooking and real men don't cry ... actually two burst cold water pipes in the kitchen in six months - second during the MasterChef finals - was a bit traumatic.

You're hosting your dream dinner party and you can invite 1 living person, 1 dead, and 1 fictional (no friends or family) - who would they be?

Brian Blessed, Joan of Arc (as an apology for being sick over her waxwork in Rouen in 1983), Omar Little.

Which came first, the chicken or the egg?

I don't know - egg (is that the right answer?).

Describe yourself in three words

Thinks too much

What’s the worst thing you have ever cooked?

Beef tacos - beef mince fried in margarine which dripped out of the taco and solidified on your arm as you ate them. First meal I cooked for med-school house mates.

What was the final push that made you enter MasterChef?

Wine and ridiculous work nonsense. It was a small decision, not a big announcement. The whole thing was a series of small decisions and choices.

What would you want as your epitaph?

"Thought too much"

What's your guilty food pleasure?

The children's fish fingers - one end in tomato ketchup - one end in brown sauce (actually, it's tinned frankfurters with salad cream squirted into the tin and a side of kabanos sausages - but I've given that answer too many times).

Who would win in a fight between a baboon and a badger?

Definitely the Apprentice woman - she was fierce.

Tim's dessert platter for the Maharajah (copyright SHINE TV/BBC)

What would be your last meal on Earth?

Cheese, wine, Pierre Herme macarons and lots of 'em.

If you were a superhero, what would you be called and what special powers would you have?

I am already. I have X-ray vision.

How many cardigans does John Torode own?

Lots - but I think some are reversible.

Who do you most admire?

My wife - because she cares and gets on with it.

What do you love cooking the most?

Something new - recipe, ingredient, situation - probably why I did okay on MasterChef. I like change. Change is good.

Has Gregg Wallace ever actually put his face in a plate of food or swallowed the spoon by accident?

Yes - mine, mine, mine. Didn't make the edit but he stuck his face in my gooseberry, elderflower and lemon syllabub - more because he couldn't get a good amount on his spoon.

[I bloody KNEW it!]

What keeps you awake at night?

Self-doubt and my children.

What's your favourite cuisine when eating out and what cuisine would you like to try that you haven't before?

I couldn't possibly choose one and tragically I rarely eat out. Up until now the combination of young children, rural Norfolk and busy doctor married to busy doctor didn't offer much opportunity. Maybe I will now - I really should.

What's the stupidest/naughtiest thing you did as a child?

Punched one of my younger brothers in the face on stage during the "Let's get the kids up on the stage" bit of a pantomime. He's still cross about it.

Do you have a nickname (childhood or current)?

There are a number - David Mellor (I used to have floppy hair!) - christened that by waiters in local curry house in Birmingham.

What's your favourite TV programme (other than MasterChef) and favourite band?

The Wire, West Wing, Spaced, Green Wing. Bloody hell, I like Arcade Fire a lot and Sigur Ros, Jonsi, Mumford & Sons, The National, Laura Marling, LCD Soundsystem and my uncle's recent work - check out Nick Wisbey vs The Beatles on Youtube (he's not that odd in real life) - "I haven't got a match" is classic post-modern pop.

What's been your proudest moment so far?

Birth of children, every single second of the MasterChef finals, selling my cakes for real money last week.

Who would you least like to be trapped in a lift with?

A paediatrician.

What's your favourite holiday destination and why?

Honestly - best holiday in ages was on a boat on the Norfolk Broads.

Tell us three more interesting things about yourself: two true, one a lie

  1. I played the trombone until my music teacher told me my mouth was too big and I should move on to the tuba.
  2. In 1995, Dhruv lived 6 doors down from me.
  3. I'm part of a burlesque dance group.
When am I going to get to eat your food?

Soon enough, poppet.

[I like to think I'm a tough cookie, but I'm actually five years old at heart - so being called a poppet by Tim is ACE]

Tim Kinnaird

Icelandic Volcano Cakes by Tim Kinnaird

Interview with the 2010 MasterChef Winner Dhruv Baker coming soon - I bet you can hardly contain yourselves ...

Interview with Alex Rushmer

Relive the 2010 MasterChef Final

Special thanks to Tim Kinnaird for the photos and @FoodUrchin, @Suzler and Popb*tch for questions


The Ample Cook said…
These interviews are genius MiMi. What a brilliant idea.

When do you get to complete your 2010 trio?

BTW love the choice of Brian Blessed as a dinner party guest Tim :)
Tim Kinnaird said…
What I did to my ribs
1. Wear inappropriate shoes in professional kitchen
2. Slip on floor during basil sorbet retrieval
3. Put out hand to break fall - hand finds empty bin
4. Tim falls in bin
5. Fall broken by ribs hitting edge of bin.
6. Pain++
7. MC runner spends 10 mins strapping Tim up in gents toilet
8. Ibuprofen
9. All better - just bruised ribs not broken.
meemalee said…
@The Ample Cook - Dhruv's will be out Friday if I can think of a suitably sarcastic introduction by then. And thank you :)

@Tim Kinnaird - Thank you for clearing that up!

Ladies and gents, now that's what I call an exclusive ...

ps You fell IN the bin? Fantastic. I mean, sorry.
Boo said…
Loving these interviews Mimi! Great post. I work with an ex MC runner and he tells me that Gregg was presented with a birthday cake on set once and he smashed his face into it. Seems like it's something of a habit!
meemalee said…
@Boo - Thanks Boo x

I am so pleased our long-held speculation about Gregg has been confirmed!
Loving your work, Mimi. Are you going to interview Cam, Clegg, and Gordy, too? You should.
meemalee said…
@aforkful - Thank you!

That lot wouldn't last a minute with me...
Another great piece of work Ms M. Also I like lots of the bands that Dr Tim does- yay! And agree with aforkful that you could be our generation's Paxman!
Nic said…
Heh heh! Loved reading this!
chumbles said…
Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant - and boy oh boy you make a very effective MC groupie! ;¬))

Fantastic stuff; these go a long way to put a much more human and real person across than the programmes did. And so agree with The Ample Cook about Brian Blessed, although you'd also have to invite the neighbours because of the volume!

Magic stuff MiMi
meemalee said…
@TheFastestIndian - I heart Jeremy Paxman. In fact I have a photo of myself somewhere staring fondly at him.

@Nicisme - Thank you :)

@chumbles - Thank you sir - much appreciated!

But "MC groupie"??

How very dare you. If anything, they're a bit scared of me ...
Kavey said…
Brilliant, absolutely brilliant.

Has anything arrived for you by unicorn yet?
meemalee said…
@Kavey - You know, I was just saying to Tim that he should be grateful I didn't mention the unicorn ...
Suz said…
Most people find my blog by searching for pineapple financiers. One did want to know what 'tin' and the others were doing now. I can't have been very helpful!

Another fabulous interview! Very funny and informative. I agree that you should tackle the politicians next. In fact, you should interview the prospective Labour party leaders. I'll give you a tenner if you make Miliband cry.
meemalee said…
@Suzler - Someone did look for "Tim's magic pea ravioli" - I felt like saying "That's Alex, you prawn".

This Yahoo Answer also made me laugh like a drain - someone was obviously having a laugh ...

Make Miliband cry? You're on!
Food Urchin said…
Another pukka interview, getting to know the Children's Doctor. For the record Norfolk is one of my favourite imaginary places.
Tina said…
Another fab interview. Tim's food looks great & he is v entertaining. Always found his habit of describing his food as 'arousing' a bit disturbing. By the sounds of things that word is completely apt for the effort it has on Greggy.
meemalee said…
@Food Urchin - Have you been?? Is Norfolk real?? Lies!

@Tina - I've had a word with Tim about that and he promises not to use the word "arousing" ever again ...