Knives are out as Come Dine With Me comes to Cheltenham
Belgian born Oli Delaunoy knows how to cook up a storm in the kitchen.
So the 47-year-old, from Churchdown, was keen to showcase his culinary talents when he was selected to appear on Channel 4’s Come Dine With Me.
He will appear on the show each night this week, pitting himself against four other contestants from the Cheltenham area.
The dad-of-one, who is a keen amateur cook, remained tight-lipped on the result – but said he was unfazed inviting cameras into his kitchen.
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“For me cooking is a very natural thing,” said the hotel director. I grew up in Belgium and so it is part of my heritage.
“I was brought up by my grandmother and she had a great understanding of cooking. She taught me a lot of what I know so I was confident going onto the programme.
“I also spent some time practicing the recipes I wanted to try beforehand.”
The first episode of the week on Monday showed Oli kick-off proceedings by entertaining guests.
He pulled out all the stops, even hiring a ventriloquist in a bid to impress.
And he went to great pains to serve up a menu of tasty treats, from a starter of scallops to a fillet steak main and an Eton Mess style pudding.
But despite his efforts, fellow contestants only gave him a score of 28 out of 40, with tactical voting a possible factor. It remains to be seen whether that will be enough to claim the £1,000 prize. The winner will be revealed on Friday.
Oli has enjoyed watching this week’s episodes with his wife Lindsay and 12-year-old daughter Amber. And he admitted it was strange seeing himself on television.
“We watched it for the first time this week and I was terrified about how it would come across,” he added.
“It was the first time I found out about what marks people gave me so it was interesting to see that.
“But I was happy with how my dishes came out.”
Oli was put up to appear on the show by his wife Lindsay. She said: “He is a good cook with a bit of flair.
“He is also a natural entertainer so I thought he’d be good on Come Dine With Me.
“Whatever happens, I know he enjoyed the experience.”
Come Dine With Me will be screened each weekday at 5.30pm.