At 5pm tonight it’s time to Come Dine with Duncan as the keen Cardiff cook shows off his culinary prowess on a hit TV show.
Canton-based Duncan Powell, 36, is the final contestant on this week’s series of Come Dine With Me, the popular reality cookery show where five strangers compete to hold the best dinner party and win £1,000.
Viewers have watched recruitment director Duncan attend four different themed parties across the week, and have already seen him donning a charity shop novelty cow hat for Tuesday’s ‘up-cycled’ party, and winning the coveted ‘Cheerleader of the Night’ award at Wednesday All-American night.
Despite having fun on screen Duncan is deadly serious about his cooking. A self-confessed competitive foodie, he appeared on the original format of Masterchef three years ago, and took great effort in planning the menu for his ‘Hawaiian Night’ party. He said: “I wanted something that could be quite consistent, rather than doing something like steak, which everyone likes = done their own way.” He eventually opted for chorizo and halloumi anti-pasta with whole prawns for a starter, followed by Honolulu Sea Bass, with a potato, pea puree and a leek carbonara sauce.
The show was filmed in late December last year, and Duncan was keen for a theme that could lift the mood. He said: “It was a Hawaiian-themed party rather than the food, because I wanted to try to bring a bit of sunshine to the cold night.” The show’s filming was a stressful time for Duncan, coming a week before Christmas when his wife was six months pregnant. They had also suffered a burglary a few days prior, so combined with the late nights and extensive filming schedule the week definitely took its toll.
Watching the show back hasn’t always been easy. London-born Duncan said: “The first day was the hardest day to watch back, I hid behind the sofa, as I felt I was stereotyped as the cockney wide boy type.”
However Duncan felt his real personality came through by the second show and despite him attracting some flak for criticising the Cwmbran accent all the contestants got on well, and have kept in touch since the show was filmed.
Duncan’s party will be aired tonight at 5pm on Channel 4, when viewers will see whether his party can impress the others enough to secure him the final prize money.