<i>MKR</i> elimination: Josh and Daniella versus Chloe and Kelly and Vikki and Helena.

MKR elimination: Josh and Daniella versus Chloe and Kelly and Vikki and Helena.

And so we've come to the first of the knockout rounds, in which three teams face off and one gets eliminated at episode's end.

Tonight it's Chloe and Kelly against nemeses Vikki and Helena as well as Danielle and Josh. You can never be sure which way the cookie's going to crumble on this show, but one thing we are guaranteed is cattiness between the WA girls and the Victorian twins. Reow.

Round one is a skills test: all three teams must fillet a (large) fish within 10 minutes, which means one person fillets the fish and the other has the (preferable, surely?) job of picking out the bones.

You need more bacon ... Josh looks on helplessly as Daniella's dreams of creating world-class food science slips away.

Turning the other beef cheek ... is this goodbye for Josh and Daniella?

Kelly is confident that Chloe is going to rock it, which is code for “f---ed if I'm doing the filleting”.

Vikki and Helena, unfathomably, have named their ocean trout Trevor. More surprising, given their fondness for all things Greek, he's not been called Theophilus, but when Vikki chops Trevor's head off, then apologises to him, this makes more sense.

The judges look on from the sidelines, amused. “Filleting a fish is something that becomes easier the more often you practise,” Manu says.

“The first 2000 are hardest,” he adds, chuckling, and wisely out of earshot of Josh, who has butchered the hell out of his second fillet. His first wasn't crash hot either. Josh is losing his cool and Danielle appears to be losing her affection for her husband. You have to wonder how many relationships turn to toast in this pressure cooker environment.

The judges scrutinise the fillets and do that annoying thing where they ask leading questions but give no hint as to what they are thinking. “How did you go, girls?” Manu asks Chloe and Kelly. They're not sure – it's a question that has that effect on people. “OK, thank you,” he continues, poker-faced.

Turns out they did all right. Chloe and Kelly are deemed the best fish-filleters – there were way too many bones in Vikki and Helena's – and they win the challenge, meaning they get to choose who cooks with what ingredient in the next round.

Between brains, lemons and limes and more of the ocean trout they've all just filleted, you'd think the WA girls would hand those slimy brains to their twin rivals. But Chloe and Kelly stun us all by keeping the brains for themselves, so missing the chance to make endless cracks about the twins needing brains because they profess to share just the one (this is still mentioned, of course, but only in passing, and for this we're grateful).

Defending their decision, Chloe and Kelly say: “We don't want to be beige anymore. Beige has gotten a lot of people to this point, but beige won't get you to the finals.”

With that, they give Helena and Vikki the citrus fruits, but life hasn't handed the twins lemons; it's what they wanted all along. Chloe and Kelly hope they'll make a dessert, because their desserts are never any good, apparently. Meanwhile Josh and Danielle receive the trout, seeing as they f---ed up the first one so royally.

The Greeks don't do their expected dessert thing – they're poaching barramundi to serve with some sort of lemon crumb and crispy potatoes (don't they love their spuds?!).

Josh and Danielle are cooking the trout confit, and I feel like I've seen them do this before a hundred times, but maybe not. Josh wants to cook the fish for 15 minutes at 42 degrees. This causes much eyebrow-raising from the fellow contestants on the balcony as well as Manu, who says he'd cook them at 60 degrees for 10 minutes.

The WA girls are gussying up their brains as best as possible by deep-frying them and serving them with green sauce and lentils. Kelly describes them as a “meaty tofu”, which is not a very effective sales pitch.

The first time Danielle and Josh inspect their trout it is worryingly undercooked, but by the time 15 minutes have elapsed the fillet is done to perfection.

The dish wins them plaudits bar the fact that Pete's fish had a bone in it, which is unforgivable after their sub-par bone-picking efforts in the first skills test.

The twins' barramundi has Pete in raptures, “but there was one thing severely wrong”, he says, at which point Kelly cracks a gremlin smile. The centre of his fish is raw.

The brains, on the other hand, are an uncontested hit. “Perfection on a plate,” says Manu. “If everyone could try your brains, I think they'd be converted,” says Pete.

“We're just going from strength to strength, while the others are getting stagnant,” says Kelly, modestly.

The triumph flies the WA witches into the top five on their broomsticks, leaving Josh and Danielle and the twins to battle it out to produce the best signature dish in sudden death.

“If you've ever had a secret weapon, now is your time to use it,” says Manu, and unfortunately this encourages Josh and Danielle to again bite off more than they can chew.

Their signature dish is Mexican beef cheek, which usually gets cooked sous vide over two days. They're now trying to do it in a pressure cooker in 90 minutes.

Helena, meanwhile, “still has a lot of anger in her from the last critique” and is seemingly taking it out on their signature dish of a Greek walnut cake, beating it into over-dense submission.

She's not happy with the first batch, and starts on a second.

Josh and Danielle are having struggles of their own – their beef cheek isn't cooked – and they have to start again with an eye fillet.

By the time 90 minutes is up, both teams have reason to look deflated. Josh and Danielle's beef fillet is cooked to perfection, but didn't have time to rest, and they couldn't get the complementary (and impressive) chilli jellies out of the moulds.

Helena and Vikki are happier with the second batch of cake, but they botched the candied oranges, and the presentation is average at best.

It's over to Pete and Manu and the guest judges to decide our teams' fates.

It's extremely close, but ultimately Vikki and Helena's cake is deemed better than Josh and Danielle's signature dish, which was “just their initials”, in the words of guest judge Guy Grossi.

They score 39 to Josh and Danielle's 35. “They're the masters of scraping through,” snipes Kelly, but to their credit the twins have cooked more than any other pair on the show and are still in the game despite being close to the edge time and time again.

And with an “au revoir and good luck”, it's goodbye to Josh and Danielle. Tune in next week to see the twins no doubt cook to stay in the competition, and hear everyone on the show remind us that they don't want to go home.