Janet Street-Porter has said she scored “one for the pensioners” after she triumphed in the Celebrity MasterChef Christmas Cook-Off.
The first of two special festive episodes of the BBC cookery show saw the Loose Women star return to the kitchen for the first time since losing out to Ade Edmondson in the Celebrity MasterChef final in 2013.
She was joined by actor Christopher Biggins, radio presenter Dev Griffin and TV personality Vicky Pattison for the culinary showdown, and triumphed after dazzling judges Gregg Wallace and John Torode with a venison pie.
She told the PA news agency: “I was so thrilled my kind of cooking won and I tried to do something a bit out of the box and it could go wrong, like it did when I did it before.
“So I am pleased but, let’s be honest, I’m not gloating, only slightly.”
She added: “This time I decided I was going to take it really seriously.
“Last time when I did it I didn’t practise my dishes enough and some of the people I was on with were fanatical, frankly, and what I learned from the first time was if you want to win it you have to have be able to really nail your main dish.
“This time I did make more effort. When I didn’t win the first time and Ade Edmondson won, not that I can be bitter, I can remember exactly what he cooked.
Ho ho ho, have we got a treat for you! 🎅 @dev_101, @VickyPattison, @onebiggins and @The_Real_JSP are back with @JohnTorode1— MasterChef UK 🍴 (@MasterChefUK) December 21, 2020
& @GreggAWallace for a Celebrity #MasterChef Christmas Cook Off tonight at 9pm on @BBCOne! â pic.twitter.com/lsA0nkHeMK
“This time I made that bloody venison pie three times before I did it, so I’ve got one in the freezer, I gave one to my PA and I ate the other one. I was sick of it by the time I cooked it.”
Street-Porter, 73, declared ‘This one is for the pensioners!’ after she was named winner and said: “Everything is all about groovy young people and the BBC always want the younger audience, which is something I did in my day, but now they have got to accept getting the younger audience isn’t necessarily achieved by putting a load of younger people on television, you can’t predict what people are going to like.
“I think what people like about me is that I’m kind of combative, I don’t take any rubbish and I just say what I think, and in the first series when Gregg started telling me what to do I went ‘I’m not listening’.”
Christmas is coming, and so is Celebrity #MasterChefUK! 🎄 Join our two wise men @JohnTorode1 & @GreggAWallace as they welcome back some familiar faces for a Christmas Cook Off this week on @BBCOne! 🌟 pic.twitter.com/yr7U9JihG5— MasterChef UK 🍴 (@MasterChefUK) December 20, 2020
The series was filmed in September under Covid guidelines and Street-Porter said the strangest moment came when she won but nobody would hug her in congratulations.
She said: “That was a bit funny because I know Gregg and John very well indeed. It was really weird to win and just stand there but I was just so thrilled I didn’t care.”
– The second episode of Celebrity MasterChef Christmas Cook-Off is on Wednesday at 9pm on BBC One.