Northumberland duo prepare to do battle after winning through first knockout stage of BBC1's Masterchef

Lorna Robertson wins through to the next round.
Lorna Robertson wins through to the next round.

Two Northumberland women go into battle in the final stages of BBC1's Masterchef after getting through the first knockout round.

Lorna Robertson, from Berwick, and Faye Dodwell, from Hexham, get their first taste of professional cooking in tomorrow's episode of the gastronomic TV show after impressing the judges in yesterday's programme.

Lorna's roast beef dinner

Lorna's roast beef dinner

Lorna, who did work experience with the Gazette's sister paper, the Berwick Advertiser ,and spent time as a reporter with our other Tweeddale titles, now lives in London where she works for a foodie PR firm.

On Monday night, she told presenters Gregg Wallace and John Torode: “This has just been the most mind-blowing experience from start to finish and I really don't want it to finish just yet because it's so much fun."

Contestants were tasked with preparing a plate of food inspired by their childhood or a family favourite in 90 minutes. It was her mouth-watering roast beef and Yorkshire pudding, with braised red cabbage, roast potatoes, red wine sauce and a cauliflower cheese puree which won the plaudits.

She told viewers: "All of these different elements are my family's favourites."

Faye Dodwell, from Hexham, in last night's episode.

Faye Dodwell, from Hexham, in last night's episode.

Lorna said she had been making Sunday dinner since she was 10 or 11: "My mum's a completely useless cook, so it was either a ready meal or it was down to me, and I was quite happy to do that."

After the tasting, judge Gregg said: "Lorna did me maybe the best-looking roast beef dish I have ever seen," while John commented: “It’s fantastic. it tastes like roast dinner at home but it looks special.”

John added: "Lorna has got skill and, at 22, I tell you what, she's shining bright."

Dairy farmer's daughter Faye, 44, a yurt builder by profession, who had proved an early favourite in the show, also chose to cook beef in her attempt to impress the judges. She chose sirloin of beef on a bed of kale with parsnip and truffle croquettes served with pickled carrots, horseradish mayonnaise and gravy,

Faye Dodwell's beef sirloin dish.

Faye Dodwell's beef sirloin dish.

Despite reservations that the beef had started life in a water bath and hoping it would spend some time in a pan, the judges were bowled over by the dish.

Gregg said: "The croquettes are as light as a feather, your sauce is fruity, it's deep and I love it - and your beef is cooked perfectly. It's delicious, Faye."

John said: "Cooked beautifully. For me, a really tasty plate of food."

Faye was delighted with the feedback: "You can't ask for more than that, I'm so pleased."

Both Northumberland cooks were among the first chosen to go through to the next round tomorrow (Wednesday) and Thursday, which are due to start on BBC One at 8pm. The following round is on Friday at 8pm.

If you missed yesterday's two episodes, you can catch up with them on iPlayer: