My Own Season of MasterChef Jr 2

I don’t know when this one fits in my imaginary timeline, but it was “filmed” alongside the upcoming Season 8. The judges are Gordon, Aarón, and Christina. The contestants are: ABBY 11, ARJUN 14, AUDREY 12, BLAKE 11, DREW 13, ELIJAH 8, EMLIY 13, ERIC 11, HARRISON 12, HUNTER 11, JACK 12, JORDAN 10, KENZIE 13, KHUSHI 10, LIV 12, LOGAN 12, MICHEAL 13, NIKKI 13, OLIVA 12, PAIGE 12, TONY 11, TORI 12, URIAH 12, and ZACHARY 12 .

Episode 1
The top 24 will cook a signature dish for the Mystery Box. The judges call down the 3 weakest dishes of the night! Tony, Michael and Jack. They will taste the dishes and only 1 kid will move on! And 2 will go home!

Jack’s Sea Bass is very undercooked and the skin is soggy. When Christina peels back the skin it takes the fish with it! Tony’s Fresh Ravioli is very chunky inside with globs of cheese. But Aarón says his sauce is the bomb and he hopes it can save him tonight. And Michael’s Hanger Steak is hammered. It is very tough and chewy, and it has no seasoning. Gordon says the dish is not Masterchef quality! The one who is safe is … Tony because of his sauce. That means Jack and Michael are going home. They get lots of hugs walking out.

Now for the good news! All the other dishes are very good but there is 1 dish that truly stands out and that dish belongs to … HUNTER! Honey Cake Slice is a hit! Everyone is cheering for him as he walks from the last cooking station to the judges table! Gordon says, “The cake is moist and tasty, and the sponge and the honey frosting is so good. Amazing job young man.” Aarón says it is hard to bake one slice to perfection like this and it shows he has some baking skills. And Christina says for all the time she has been in MasterChef it is the best Mystery Box Dessert she has ever had!!!

Hunter is safe and going into the next round he gets to save 11 kids from the Elimination Test where 2 more kids will go home! He saves Abby, Uriah, Nikki, Tori, Paige, Jordon, Liv, Eric, Elijah, Zachary and Oliva. The remaining 10 must make Filet Mignon and Fries.

Drew’s plating looks amazing and when Gordon cuts into his steak it is nice and pink. The flavor is fantastic. The steak is juicy and delicious. Aarón says the spice he added is dynamite, one of the best blends he has tasted. Christina loves his crispy and tasty Cajun fries. She says she is happy he is able to compete in the season because now she knows what an amazing chef he is and believes he is going to go far.

Khushi boiled her steak and it destroyed the texture of the meat. Unfortunately, she also burnt her fries. Aarón is disappointed; he excepted more from her.

Tony’s steak is a nice medium rare, it is seasoned well and tastes good. But his fries are cooked unevenly because they were cut unevenly. Knife skills are always important.

Blake nailed the cook on both his steak and fries. They both taste good; the beef is juicy and the fries are crisp. But Christina says it has no personality. She can’t tell who made it just by looking at it.

Logan’s steak is a bit too rare for Gordon’s liking, but the meat still tastes amazing and he loves her uniform, yummy fries.

Audrey’s steak is a hair overdone, but her great seasoning saves the dish from ruin. And her crispy, crunchy fries are some of the best of the night.

The cook and seasoning on Kenzie’s steak is textbook and it has an amazing taste. Her Texas-style fries are crispy, tasty and seasoned to a tee.

Arjun’s plating is wonderful, but his steak is overcooked, and his fries are undercooked. Despite a nice taste, Gordon is disappointed. He says, “You focused way too much on the look of the dish and not the flavors and that is something that will get you sent packing!”

Harrison was pressed for time and does not have the best plating, but he nailed all the elements. The steak is ruby red and has an incredible flavor and his fries are so good. Christina says, “If this had better plating it may have been the dish of the night.”

Sadly, Emily’s steak is blue raw!!! And her fries are undercooked and fall apart to the touch!! Emily says she was out of her element because she is more of a baker. Chef Aarón says, “If you want to win MasterChef Jr you need to be a well-rounded chef.”

KENZIE made the 2nd best dish and the best dish of the night belonged to …. DREW!!! (Applause). Khushi, Logan, Arjun and Emily are in the bottom and the 2 kids who are going forward are …. Logan and Arjun. That means Khushi and Emily are going home. They get lots of hugs and pats on the back walking out. Emily says, “I totally understand I should know how to do more than baking, but I still had a great time here. I will keep learning new skills every day.” Khushi says, “I had an amazing time in the Masterchef Kitchen. I can’t wait to go back home and continue cooking.”


Episode 2                                                                                                                                                  For the first Team Challenge the top 20 will cook Rib Eye Steak with two sides for 101 firefighters. Drew is the Red Team Captain. His picks are Nikki, Uriah, Hunter, Olivia, Paige, Zachary, Elijah, Arjun and Abby. Kenzie is the Blue Team Captain. Her picks are Harrison, Eric, Audrey, Jordan, Tony, Logan, Tori, Liv and Blake.

On the Red Team Drew kindly asks Hunter want he wants to do to help the team😊. Hunter says he wants to make the bread for their Bacon Garlic Bread Croutons. Uriah nails the grilled mushrooms. Unfortunately, Nikki and Oliva overcook the meat and put it up to the pass, but Drew finds it in time and cooks new steaks properly. The Red Team is able to serve all the firefighters on time. On Kenzie’s Blue Team Tony obliterates the pasta for the Mac and Cheese, and they must 86 it and just serve Potatoes with a Cheese Sauce! On top of that they serve raw steak that Kenzie and Eric are cooking, and Gordon blows his stack!

In the end the winning team is ……. THE RED TEAM!

That means the Blue Team is in the Pressure Test. Back in The MasterChef Kitchen Kenzie gets to save 3 members of her team. She saves Harrison, Liv and Tori. The remaining kids must bake a Banana Cream Pie. During the cook time Jordan’s crust falls apart and he must redo the whole pie! Time is up.

Kenzie’s pie has a great crust and an incredible taste. You can really taste the banana. But Christina wants just a bit more of that pastry cream since it is so delicious. Other than that, she did a good job.

Jordan’s amazing pie looks like it came from a pastry shop. And the bake is stupendous. The crust is flaky, and the banana filling tastes like a dream. Aarón loves the whipped cream topping and says he did a great job bouncing back.

Audrey’s pie is very runny on top because she used her blow torch to caramelize the sliced bananas and it melted the whipped cream. But the pie itself tastes good.

Tony’s pie crust is very wet since he used too much butter. It tastes greasy. However, all the judges loves his pastry cream. But can it save him?

Logan’s pie is almost bare of any whipped cream. Although the pie crust is delicious and the pastry cream mind blowing.

Blake’s pie has a solid bake. It has a very good tasting crust and a heavenly cream, but he did not caramelize the bananas on top enough. About this mistake Christina says, “The rest of your pie is so good, I don’t even care!”

Eric’s pastry cream is so raw the judges can still see the runny egg whites. They cannot taste it. But he nailed the crust and the whipped cream topping, so that is something.

The best pie of the night belongs to … JORDAN!!!

Kenzie, Blake and Logan are also safe. That leaves Tony, Audrey and Eric. And the one going home is … Eric. ☹ He gets hugs from his friends. Eric says, “I am sad I never got to share my Texas flavors, but I got to cook for three amazing judges in the MasterChef Kitchen and it was really fun!”
Episode 3
The top 19 are shocked to find offal under their Mystery Boxes! Stuff like chicken feet, chicken liver, pigs’ ear, beef tongue and cheek! Uriah is freaking out since she has not ever eaten anything like this before, let alone tried to cook it herself. Everyone does their best.

The first best dish belongs to Drew. He made Fried Chicken Feet with Crispy Pig’s Ear. Gordon says he took a big risk using two different offal parts, but they both are cooked perfectly. “You nailed the cook on the feet. The coating is seasoned great and gives a nice crunch, and the meet is sweet and tender. And the pig ear, young man, is crispy and delicious. Phenomenal!” Christina loves it so much she takes more off the plate. And Aarón says, “Drew! If you keep cooking like this, you will go all the way to the finale!”

The next best dish is Tony’s Beef Cheek Ravioli. He nailed the beef and pasta, they taste divine. But he under seasoned them a bit. Gordon says, “I’m glad you are finally playing to your strengths. Welcome back to the competition!”

And the last best dish belongs to … Arjun. He made Liver and Onions. He cooked the liver well. It tastes as it should, however, some of the onions are undercooked. Christina wishes he left them off the dish, but the the rest of the plate is lovely.

And the Best Dish belongs to … DREW!!! He is safe and gets to pick the next challenge. Will it be Eclairs, Cream Puffs or Tiramisu? He decides his friends will make …. Eclairs!

During the cook time Hunter burns his first batch, but he is able to remake them before – Time is up!

Uriah’s Chocolate Eclairs look amazing. The dough has a wonderful taste, they have the right amount of chocolate filling and the filling itself is luscious. Christina is very impressed. She says she knew Uriah could cook, but now she knows she can bake too. Aarón takes a few eclairs out of the box for later. 😊

Hunter’s Vanilla Eclairs overflow with vanilla filling, but Aarón does not mind one bit since the taste is unreal. Aarón says, “Your pastry cream is amazing, the best yet. But, I wish your shells were larger and more uniform.” Gordon says they are some of the best eclairs he has ever tasted. Hunter is smiling a lot.

Nikki nailed the bake on the shell of her Banana Eclairs, but they lack her yummy banana filling. Christina is super bummed because it is very tasty. She says, “Girl, don’t hold back on the filling. Give us all you got!”

Aarón loves the taste of the filling in Zachary’s Dark Chocolate Éclairs. He especially loves the hint of chili that brings a little heat. He says, “Your flavors remind me of the desserts my mom used to make, straight to my heart.” Unfortunately, his shell is dry, and a tad overbaked.

Blake’s Mixed Berry Éclairs are a mess of tastes. Christina says, “There is too much going on here to detect all the great flavors. But, I gotta tell you, they are baked well.”

Abby’s Blueberry Éclairs are stuck to the bottom of the plate because the dough is under baked. But Aarón loves her filling. He says, “I really hope this fantastic blueberry filling it is enough to save you.”

Jordan’s White Chocolate Éclairs have a great bake, however he added way too much sugar and the filling is overly sweet for Gordon and Aarón. One the other hand, Christina loves the sweetness.

Tony nailed the cook on his Raspberry Éclairs, but Christina finds a big mistake. The seeds are still in the berry filling and it ruins the smooth texture of the delicious pastry cream.

Elijah’s Vanilla Bean Éclairs are the bomb. The dough is the best of night with just the right amount air and sweetness. And the filling is fabulous. Gordon says, “If this is what you can do at only 8, I can’t want to see even more from you! Great Job!”

Olivia’s Raspberry Éclairs look wonderful, but they lack flavor. When Christina asks her about her ingredients she realizes she forgot the sugar!!

URIAH and EILJAH are the top 2.  Blake, Abby and Oliva are in the bottom 3. Blake is saved and the last one who is safe is … Abby. That means Oliva is going home. ☹ Before she leaves the MasterChef Kitchen everyone gives her a group hug. She says, “I am sad I am going home so soon, but I still got to be here and learn from the judges. It was a lot of fun!”
Episode 4
The top 18 will cook chicken breast for the guests and staff at a Kidz Bop Concert. Uriah is the Red Team Captain and her chosen teammates are Hunter, Paige, Zachary, Jordan, Audrey, Arjun, Nikki and Blake. Elijah is the Blue Team Captain and his chosen teammates are Drew, Abby, Liv, Kenzie, Tony, Tori, Logan and Harrison.

On the Red Team Paige and Blake overcook the chicken and Uriah must help them fix it. The Red Team is able to get all the plates out in a timely manner.

On the Blue Team Elijah is having trouble as team captain and he starts to cry, but Drew takes the older brother roll and gives him a little pep talk. Drew tells Elijah he knows he can do it and they quickly get back to work. However, it is still way too much for Elijah and he hands over the captain’s apron to Drew. Drew tells him it is okay and asks Elijah to help with the chicken. After a bumpy start the Blue Team also gets all the plates out in time.

In the end the wining team is the RED TEAM.

Back in the MasterChef Kitchen Drew and Elijah get to decide together who will be saved from the dreaded Pressure Test. They choose to save: Tori, Logan and Harrison. The remaining 6 kids have 60 minutes to make a Sausage in a Bun. During the cook time, Elijah is really feeling the pressure and is tearing up. Again, Drew is an amazing friend. He gives Elijah a hug and helps him get started by getting the meat out of the sausage maker before – Time is up.

Unfortunately, Elijah’s Miso Pork Sausage is dry from being overcooked. Gordon says, “Sadly the meat is overcooked, and you burned the bun. But you got the seasoning right and it helps lift up the taste. I really hope this dish does not send you home.”

Abby’s Maple Bacon Sausage is very good. It is cooked well; very juicy and tasty. Christina loves the homemade maple glaze sauce. “When I taste your sauce, Abby, it takes me right back to my childhood on the farm. Happy memories.”

Kenzie’s Chorizo Sausage is cooked to perfection and her bun is nice and crisp. But her Texas Style Sauce is way too spicy for Aarón because it has 3 hot peppers in it! The peppers overpower the great taste of the meat in the bun!

Drew’s Lamb & Pork Sausage is very moist. It is juicy and delicious, and the seasoning is spot on. Gordon says, “Wow! Your sausage combo is mind blowing! It has a great texture, and the way you seasoned the meat wow! And that pretzel bun is amazing. Good job!” In fact, Drew’s sausage is so good Gordon gives everyone in the Pressure Test a bite. They all love it.

Tony’s Spicy Italian Sausage is nicely cooked and the taste as out of this world. It is packed with so much flavor, but Chef Aarón says he is not getting the punch of spice he expected. He is a bit disappointed.

Liv’s Chicken Sausage has a big problem! It is pink, and it is not safe for the judges to taste. Christina says, “Oh Liv, I was really looking forward to your dish. The fact that it is too pink to eat is so disappointing.”

DREW and ABBY have to the top 2 dishes of the night. Kenzie and Tony are also safe. That leaves Liv and Elijah, and the young chef going home is …… Liv. ☹ Elijah runs to Drew with tears of relief and Drew gives him a huge hug and says “It’s okay, buddy. It’s okay.” And then all the kids gather for a big group hug. Liv and Elijah are at the center. As she is walking out Liv says, “I am so sad I made a silly mistake, but I made lots of new friends and I had a great time. I know now, I will never stop cooking!”
Episode 5
For the first Skills Test of the season the top 17 young home cooks have to break down a whole lobster in 20 minutes! Gordon starts the challenge with a demo to show the kids how to do it.

During the Skills Test time Kenzie is having trouble removing the lobster tail shell and she is basically destroying it! Next to her, Drew is taking apart the crustacean like a pro chef and Gordon tells the other judges it is a treat to watch him work. After time is up the judges look over the young cooks work and decided who is safe and who will cook is the next challenge: Drew-Yes, Uriah-Yes, Zachary-No, Harrison-Yes, Blake-No, Kenzie-No, Elijah-Yes, Logan-Yes, Audrey-Yes, Tony-Yes, Hunter-No, Paige-Yes, Jordan-Yes, Nikki-Yes, Abby-Yes, Arjun-No and Tori-Yes. The judges announce that DREW did the best job of the night!

Now Hunter, Arjun, Zachary, Blake and Kenzie have to make Gordon’s signature Lobster Tail with a Brown Butter Sauce. During this cook time Kenzie is still struggling. She burns the butter sauce twice and barely gets her plate finished before – time is up.

Hunter’s plate looks amazing His lobster meat is glistening white, the seasoning is on point and the taste of his brown butter sauce is heavenly. The lobster melts in the mouth. Gordon loves it so much he takes another bite. Christina says, “Hunter, it is so, so tasty. This dish proves you are not only you are a wonderful baker; you are also an amazing savory chef as well. Great job!”

Arjun made a huge mistake. He plated the lobster first and then drowned it in the butter sauce!!! Gordon says, “It looks like a goldfish floating in the tank.” The lobster is very greasy. The excess butter spoils the taste of the lobster meat which is actually cooked perfectly. “What a shame.”

Aarón loves Zachary’s dish. He says, “Zachary, here’s the deal, the cook on the lobster – awesome! The taste is unreal. And your sauce is dynamite, it really brings up the flavors. But, my one nitpick is the seasoning, it is a tad over peppered. Other than that, great job.”

Blake’s plating is very sloppy. Christina knows that he can do better, but she loves the taste of the luscious lobster. She says, “You nailed the seasoning, Blake. And your sauce has just the right amount of heat. Incredible cooking young man. Next time, make it pretty.”

Sadly, Kenzie’s lobster is very under seasoned and overcooked. The lobster meat is tough and chewy. But at least Gordon loves her sauce. He says it hides the overcooking of the lobster a bit Gordon asks, “Have you given up, young lady?” Kenzie says, “I will never give up.”

Hunter, Zachary and Blake have made great dishes and are safe. That leaves Arjun and Kenzie. And sadly, the one leaving is … Arjun. He is very disappointed and sad to go. He gets lots of hugs from his new friends before he leaves. Arjun says, “I am super bummed to be leaving, but I made some very amazing friends here. And I have become a better chef. I will go home and just cook more and more. Hopefully, I will open my restaurant one day.”

Episode 6
The top 16 will cook a high-class burger with a side or homemade sauce in 8 teams of 2. Since he did the best with the lobster, Drew gets to pick his team member as well as the other pairs. He chooses Hunter right away😊. The other teams are Nikki and Zachary, Elijah and Jordan, Harrison and Paige, Uriah and Kenzie, Tony and Logan, Tori and Audrey, and Abby and Blake. The winning team will get their recipe in Family Circle Magazine!

Drew and Hunter made a Multi-Spice Burger with a homemade bun. (Drew wanted a redemption from his last audition.) The burger is a nice medium rare but is all about the taste. Gordon takes a bite and he gives the boys a bite and asks them what they think. They both say it is very good and Gordon agrees. He says, “I mean guys, just wow! The taste of the burger is delicious, it is so juicy. The spices are mind blowing. They give the burger an unexpected punch of flavor, amazing job!” Christina says, “The burger is so good I want to eat more and more. This bun is unbelievable. Honestly I did not even think this was possible. And your oven fried pickles are inventive and crunchy ith a hint of sour. Good job.” Aarón says, “This is such an amazing bite, and it teaches me something about both of you young men. Drew, you are great student and can learn from your mistakes and Hunter, you can make amazing things from scratch.”

Abby and Blake made a Double Cheese Cheeseburger. It is clogged with cheese. It interfered with the cook on the patty making it very dry. On top of that the cheese is very gritty. Christina says, “This might have been something very special, but sadly it is a big letdown.” Luckily, they nailed their classic fries.

Nikki and Zachary made a Lamb Burger. The lamb patty is cooked perfectly. It has a great flavor to it. And the seasoning is spot on. Aarón says he loves how they took a risk since lamb can dry out super quick. However, their onion rings are undercooked

Audrey and Tori’s Classic Cheeseburger is overcooked and has just an ok taste. Their fries taste bland. Gordon says, “This burger is good for dinner at home on a Friday night, but not in the MasterChef Kitchen. It is way too simple.”

Jordan and Elijah’s Chicken Teriyaki Burger is a hit, the patty is cooked well and has a great taste. Jordon nailed the homemade chips. Elijah’s homemade teriyaki sauce is out of this world, Aarón says it is his favorite thing on the plate and he should sell it by the jar.

Logan and Tony’s Turkey Burger is well seasoned, but on the dry side. Christina says that Logan’s homemade coleslaw masks the fact that the meat is dry. She says, “It takes a good darn slaw to do that.”

Kenzie and Uriah made a Texas Style Burger. Aarón says, “Here’s the deal, the taste on the burger is excellent, the cook is spot on. Kenzie your Texas sauce is nice and spicy-love that. My issue it not with the burger but with your team. Uriah you really only made the mushrooms. I wish you did more. Maybe you could have made your own spice mix or done something with the bun. This feels like it was made by Kenzie, not Kenzie and Uriah.”

Harrison and Paige’s BBQ Burger is so raw it is like a beef tartar! It has no taste and no seasoning. Gordon is so disappointed. He says, “Ladies, the meat looks so bad, I don’t even want to taste it!!!” And they forgot their side!

The wining team is DREW AND HUNTER!!! Nikki and Zachary, Elijah and Jordon, Logan and Tony, and Uriah and Kenzie are also safe.

The remaining 6 remaining kids will bake Crème Brûlée. During the bake time Blake chars his first one and he has to make a new one with 10 minutes left! After time is up the judges taste each one at the same time with no comments. In the end the best Crème Brûlée belongs to …. BLAKE!!! It was perfectly browned and crisp on top and nice and creamy inside. Abby, Tori and Paige are safe.

Harrison and Audrey are in the bottom. Audrey forgot to torch hers and Harrison’s was under baked. And the one who is safe is ……. Audrey. That means Harrison is going home. 😦 He gets lots of hugs walking out. He says, “I am sad to go, but I made it on MasterChef Junior. It’s been a dream of mine. I had so much fun here and I will go back home and keep cooking foe my family and friends.”
Episode 7
For the next Mystery Box, the top 15 will cook a perfect egg dish.

The first best dish belongs to Logan. She made a poached Egg. When Gordon cuts into the yolk, it’s nice and runny. The taste is mind- blowing and the seasoning is perfection. Gordon says, it took him years to get it right and she has mastered at 14!

The next best dish belongs to Zachary He made a nice and fluffy omelet. It has the right amount of black pepper and a heavenly taste. Christina says she has never seen an omelet as high end as this.

The last dish belongs to Nikki. She made a classic scrambled eggs. Chef Aarón says, “They are so good Nikki. so good. The cook is spot on, and I just love the seasoning. It is a simple dish, but it is very good. Good job.”

The winner is … LOGAN! She is safe and gets to pick the 7 she thinks are the strongest cooks. She picks: Nikki, Zachary, Blake, Tony, Tori, Kenzie, and Audrey. She gets to save either them or the other 7 young chefs. She saves the strongest cooks since she wants to compete with the best.

The remaining 7 cooks will have to make Gordon’s Classic Fish and Chips, newspaper and all. During the cook time, Uriah does not know how to fry the fish, but Drew helps her. Time is up

Drew’s plating is breathtaking. The breading on the cod is crispy and seasoned well. Inside the fish is glistening and tastes absolutely delicious. It melts in Gordon’s mouth. The combination of fish and breadcrumbs is to-die-for. And his fries are remarkable; evenly cut, well-seasoned, salty, crispy and very tasty. Gordon says, “I hope this sends a message to Logan that you are one of the best chefs here. Good job!”

Uriah’s breading is falling off and has no seasoning, and her fish is way overcooked and chewy. However, she nailed her fries. Aarón says, “To be a good chef you have to learn to cook foods and styles that you are not comfortable with, and sadly I don’t know if you did enough.”

Hunter’s fish is seasoned well, cooked to the right temp and has a great taste. But Christina likes his amazing fries more than the fish itself. She can’t explain why the fries are so crispy and taste so delicious, she just keeps eating more and more.

Jordan nailed the cook on his fish and the taste is outstanding, but Gordon is disappointed with his fries. They are charred and don’t taste very good, and the fries are just as important as the fish. Gordon says, “It is a half-completed dish.”

Paige nailed the cook on her fish and the taste is luscious. It has the right amount of salt and pepper. She perfected her fries, very crispy and tasty. Christina says it is the best dish she has seen from her so far. 😊

Elijah’s fish is in very small portions. Gordon says its fish fingers and chips. (everyone laughs) 😊 But, the seasoning is on point and the fish tastes amazing. His thick cut potato fries are a bright spot in his overall dish.

And finally, Abby’s fish is so undercooked it’s like sushi. It is stone cold and none of the judges can eat it! On top of that, her fries are soggy. 😦

DREW AND PAIGE are top 2 of the night! Hunter and Elijah are safe as well. That leaves Uriah, Jordon and Abby. Uriah and Jordon are saved. Sadly, Abby is the next home cook to go. 😦 She gets lots of comforting hugs walking out. She says, “I am happy I finally made it on Masterchef Jr. It was a blast being here. I made really good friends and I got to cook amazing food. I’m a way better chef then before I came here.”
Episode 8
It is charity night in the MasterChef Kitchen. The top 14 will cook for 30 founders of charities. Drew is getting super emotional when he hears one of them is for anti-bullying. He says he was bullied, and he used cooking as a means to help himself feel strong and show other kids not to let bullies get you down. Drew and Paige are the captains today. Drew is the Blue Team Captain and his picks are Nikki, Kenzie, Uriah, Audrey, Elijah and Jordan. Paige is the Red Team Captain and her picks are Logan, Tori, Hunter, Blake, Zachary and Tony.

On the Red Team Logan is confident she can cook the sea bass, but she burns a whole tray!!! And the team has to cut the fish in half to make 30 plates!! On Drew’s Blue Team Kenzie serves RAW DUCK!! But Drew puts it back in the pan and cooks it. Both teams finish strong. The winning team is … THE BLUE TEAM!!!!!!!

The Red Team has to pick together who should be safe from the Pressure Test. They pick Tori since she got all the plates done in time. The remaining 6 kids have to bake a box of 12 French Macarons!

During the bake time Hunter is getting flustered since he has never made macarons before. All the kids on the balcony are cheering and saying, “You can do it Hunter.” Zachary is a great friend when he helps Hunter knock the air out of his shells. Logan is pressed for time and in the last seconds she crams her cookies into the box! Time is up.

Paige’s Coffee Macarons look nice on the outside, but they are very overbaked, and the coffee filling tastes way too strong. It is the only thing Gordon can taste. He says he expected more from her since she is one of the best bakers on the show.

Hunter’s Birthday Cake Macarons look very colorful and fun. They have a scrumptious vanilla taste. Even though it has lots of filling Christina does not mind because filling is her favorite part of any macaron. The filling it just so good and the shell is baked well and tastes divine. The only thing that Christina does not like is she has to share them with Gordon and Aarón. She just wants to take them in the lounge and eat them all. 😊

Tony’s Pistachio Macarons have a smooth shell and amazing feet. They are very chewy inside but Aarón says that Tony did not get all the shells out of the nuts. “You know what shells in baked goods mean Tony? A visit to the dentist.”

Zachary’s Classic Vanilla Bean Macarons are a hit. Christina loves the nice creamy filling in the center and the cookie itself is baked well and tastes incredible. She says, “This is a testament that sometimes classics still work.”

Logan’s Strawberry Macarons are jammed into the box and they are all broken. Gordon says, “I know you were pressed for time, but this is not how you treat something as delicate as a macaron.” And the irony is, they taste really good. She got the berry flavor in the cookie as well as the filling.

And Blake’s Chocolate Macarons are baked well, but Gordon thinks there is way too much chocolate in inside and it spoils the taste of the cookie. But Christina and Aarón say it gives them a nice rich taste.

HUNTER made the best Macarons of the night!!! Tony, Blake and Zachary are also safe. That leaves Logan and Paige and the one who is safe is ……. Paige. That means Logan is going home. 😦 She gets lots of comforting hugs walking out of the kitchen. She says, “I am shocked to be going home, but at least I won one Mystery Box. I will never give up on my food dream.”
Episode 9
For the next Mystery Box, the top 13 will make a restaurant quality breakfast dish in 60 minutes.

The first best dish belongs to Blake with his Buttermilk Pancakes and Homemade Maple Syrup. The pancakes are light and fluffy, and Chef Gordon loves his syrup. He says, “Tasting this I can tell you are thinking like a chef and cooking like a chef.” 😊

The next dish belongs to …. Jordan. He made Mango Turnovers. They are flaky, crispy and they taste amazing. The mango flavor gives them a nice pop. Christina says it is one of the best plates she has seen from him so far. Chef Aarón says he can win the whole thing if he keeps cooking like this.

And the last dish belongs to Nikki. She made Chicken and Waffles. The chicken is nice and crispy and tastes delicious. Her waffles are fluffy and are toasted well. But, Aarón says her breading on her chicken needs a hair more seasoning.

And the winner is … JORDAN!! He is safe. The remaining 12 kids have to make an apple dish, and Jordan gets to pick who does sweet and who does savory. Drew, Zachary, Blake, Paige, Tori and Tony get savory and Nikki, Kenzie, Hunter, Uriah, Elijah and Audrey get sweet. And when time it up, Jordan gets to save 1 kid from each group. He saves Tori and Kenzie.

Drew made Apple Stuffed Pork Chop. Inside the pork is spot on, moist and slightly pink with just the right amount of apples. He nailed the taste the pork itself, it is juicy and delicious. The apples are cooked down enough to give the pork that nice taste of apple and all the judges love the seasoning. Gordon says, “Young man, this is one of your best dishes you made so far! You are raising the bar. Great job.” And Christina loves his Baked Apple Potato side, they are something that she has never tasted before.

Nikki’s Apple Crumble is under baked and is falling apart. When Christina tries to get a spoon full she says, “It tastes fine, I am getting the apple, but this has been one of your weakest dishes. I don’t know if it is good enough, I’m sorry.”

Blake’s Apple Crusted Steak is overcooked, but you can really taste the apple. Aarón says he really did not make the apple the star of the dish. However, the steak tastes ok and he loves his Apple Fries, they are crispy, and the flavor is there.

Uriah’s Apple Tartlet is baked to perfection! The crust is nice and flaky and tastes heavenly. Aarón says it is the best dessert he has seen from her. Christina loves the pastry cream; it elevates the taste of the tart.

Paige made Apple Roasted Chicken Breast. It is a tad on the dry side, but you don’t realize it because of the great apple taste. Gordon says, “It is a good effort for a hard challenge. Your seasoning is there, which helps a lot, but you just overcooked your protein. You will know better next time, right?”

Christina loves Hunter’s Mini Apple Pie. She says, “Hunter this dessert is phenomenal! The crust is golden brown and flaky. And the bite with the caramelized apples is outstanding. If you keep cooking like this you could win this whole competition. Great job buddy!”

Zachary’s Apple Infused Sausage is a hit. The meat is cooked beautifully. The apple flavor with the spiced pork is unbelievable! Aarón says, “This is a great idea for a home cook your age. I gotta tell you, young man, you are cooking way beyond your years. Well done.”

All three of the judges love Elijah’s Apple Cobbler. Christina says it has a nice crunch to it and it is very flavorful, but even better she loves his Apple Ice Cream. It is very creamy, and the taste stands out, it can be a dish on its own. Christina eats the whole thing!

Audrey’s Apple Cake is a simple but a great bite. The sponge is fluffy, and you get a taste of apple in every bite. Christina loves it so much she takes 2 more bites. She says, “Sometimes simple works and tonight it does.”

And finally, Tony’s Apple Pasta is problematic. Gordon says, “Even though the pasta is cooked well and tastes fine it only has one, two, three, four, five pieces of apple. And Tony, this is an apple challenge, not a pasta challenge.” Gordon says he doesn’t know if Tony can go further because he keeps making the same thing over and over again.

DREW, HUNTER, URIAH and ZACHARY have the top four dishes of the night! Blake, Nikki and Tony are in the bottom. Nikki is saved first and the last one safe is …… Blake. That means Tony is going home. ☹ He is very disappointed and the remaining 12 chefs tell him they will miss him a lot. Tony says, “I am sad I am going home, but I feel like I did the best I could. I will go home and learn more savory dishes. I will never stop cooking or baking.”
Episode 10
The top 12 will be in 6 teams of 2 and each kid will make a Beef Wellington and they will pick which one the judges will taste. The teams are Drew and Nikki, Zachary and Kenzie, Hunter and Paige, Elijah and Uriah, Jordon and Tori, and Blake and Audrey.

Drew and Nikki are up first, they pick Drew’s Welli. It is cooked to perfection with a ruby red center and texture that melts in the mouth. The hot mustard gives it a pleasing heat, the mushroom duxelles is amazing, and he nailed the crepe and the puff pastry. Gordon says, “Honestly this is one of the Beef Wellingtons I have ever had.”

Zachary and Kenzie pick Kenzie’s Welli for the judges. Sadly, the meat is hammered and has an unpleasant taste! She forgot to add the mustard, her crepe is falling apart, and her mushrooms are charred! Christina is disappointed because she expected more from Kenzie.

Hunter and Paige picked Hunter’s Welli for tasting. Chef Aarón loves it! He says, “Hunter, here’s the deal, the cook on the beef is amazing and the taste is unreal. The mustard is nice and spicy, and your puff pastry is the best of the night. The crepe is well cooked, and I love love your mushroom. Good job!”

Elijah and Uriah are up next, they pick Uriah’s Welli. She nailed it! The cook on her beef is amazing and it tastes outstanding! She used just the right amount of mustard. Her mushrooms have an excellent flavor and the crepe is textbook. Gordon is very impressed.

Blake and Audrey pick Blake’s Welli. Sadly, the puff pastry and beef are overcooked. But Blake’s liberal use of mustard hides the fact the beef is overdone. He also cooked the mushroom to a tee and the crepe is fabulous. Gordon says, “I really wish the beef was cooked properly since this might have been one of the best tonight.”

And Tori and Jordan picked Tori’s Welli. Unfortunately, the pastry and filet are very raw. On top of that, the mushrooms are soggy, and she forgot all about the mustard and the crepe. Aarón says, “Young lady, I hate to tell you this, but the dish has lots of issues.”

Drew and Nikki, Hunter and Paige, and Uriah and Elijah are safe. And last the team that is safe is …. Blake and Audrey.

Kenzie, Zachary, Tori and Jordan have to make Eggs Benedict and 2 will go home tonight!
Jordan nailed the dish. The egg is nice and runny, the muffin is baked well, and the sauce is so good. Gordon says the way the dish looks and tastes it can be mistaken for his own in a blind taste test!

Tori’s egg is undercooked, inedible. The sauce is wet, and the muffin is so burnt no one can bite into it! She is having a hard day. ☹

Zachary got the correct cook on the egg and muffin. They taste divine, but the sauce is broken. It does not taste like anything good and it is supposed to be one of the stars of the dish!

And Kenzie’s egg is overcooked, but her sauce is the best of the night and she nailed the muffin. Christina hopes it is good enough to keep her in.

JORDAN is the first one safe and the last one safe is …. Kenzie. Sadly, Zachary and Tori are going home. They get a huge group hug before walking out. 😊 Tori says, “I am a bit sad to be going home, but I know I am still a great chef and baker. I will open my bakery one day” Zachary says, “I had so much fun in the MasterChef Kitchen. I made lots of friends that I will have forever.”

Episode 11
The top 10 learn they will not be cooking tonight! The last 8 elimated kids come back they will cook in 2 challenges and 2 young chefs will return in the competition. The young chefs are: HARRISON, ABBY, LOGAN, TONY, ZACHARY and TORI! All the kids on the balcony are cheering and giving them a warm welcome as they run back into the kitchen.

For the first challenge the kids will make as many Sunnyside Up Eggs as they can. One will win back the apron in this round and the 2 runners-up will compete for the last apron. Sadly meaning 3 will go home before the next round.

After the 10 minutes is up the judges look over every egg and decide the first young chef returning with 12 perfect eggs is …. ABBY! She runs up to the balcony and hugs her fellow Season 6 returnee, Drew. Tony and Zachary will continue since they made 10 and 11 excellent eggs. Sadly Logan, Tori and Harrison only made 6, 8 and 9 eggs respectively, and have to go home again. But first all the kids hug them goodbye as they exit. 😊

Tony and Zachary will cook Pan Seared Salmon and the judges won’t know who cooked which dish. The judges will leave the kitchen in the last minutes. It will be Red Salmon vs Blue Salmon. During the cook time Tony burns his only salmon but Zachary gives him his backup. 😊 Zachary says, “Tony is my friend and even though I want to win that doesn’t mean I won’t help. I don’t want to win like that. No way.” All the kids on the balcony are cheering for both of them. Time is up.

Red Salmon is cooked beautifully. It is well seasoned and tastes great, but it was put skin side down, thus the skin is soggy. The Blue Salmon is also cooked to a tee and it tastes delicious. The skin is crispy and brings up the taste of the fish. but the fish is a tad under seasoned.

The best salmon is Blue, and that dish belongs to …….. ZACHARY!!! He is so happy he hugs Tony and runs up to the balcony. And then all the kids come down to walk Tony out of the kitchen for the last time. 😊
Episode 12
The top 12 arrive at a kid’s party for the next Team Challenge. Hunter and Audrey are the Team Captains. Hunter is the Blue Team Captain his picks are Nikki, Uriah, Jordan, Abby and Zachary. Audrey is the Red Team Captain her picks are Blake, Paige, Drew, Kenzie and Elijah. The teams will cook either Fried Fish or Fried Chicken.

At first, Hunter is having trouble as the team captain. He is very nervous since this is the first team challenge he has done without his friend Paige, but Zachary helps him calm down. In the end, Hunter is an amazing team captain and they get all the fried chicken cooked and serve all the kids. On the Red Team Kenzie puts up raw fish! Luckily, Drew refires enough portions in time and they finish well. The winning team is BLUE TEAM!

Back in the Masterchef Kitchen the Red Team will make Dumplings with a Sauce for the Pressure Test.

Audrey’s Dumplings are very sloppy. They have an uneven amount of meat, but they taste very good. The dough is cooked nicely, and her sour cream sauce gives it a kick. Gordon says, “These dumplings need to be eaten in the dark. They look horrible, but they taste amazing.”

Drew’s Dumplings look incredible. The dough is cooked and wrapped nicely. They are not too greasy. The cook on the meat is spot on, and the taste is amazing. It is super delicious and flavorful. And Drew’s spicy sauce is amazing. Christina says the dumplings are elevated enough to be in a high-class restaurant!

Elijah does not have lots of dumplings in his box, but the ones he did get in taste amazing. The meat is juicy. Chef Aarón loves that he made his Teriyaki Sauce again, it is the best sauce he has ever tasted, even better than last time!

Kenzie’s Dumplings look great on the outside, but on the inside the meat in a tad overcooked and chewy, and the dough too greasy. In addition, her Texas-Style Sauce is runny.

Paige’s Dumplings are very undercooked and are coved in grease! The meat is disintegrating and does not taste good at all. And her BBQ Sauce is broken. Gordon says it is her weakest performance so far.

Blake’s Dumplings have a great presentation; however, they are a tad too greasy. It upsets the taste is the meat. But Aarón loves his Spicy Sauce and says it saves the overall taste of the dumplings.

DREW made the best Dumplings of the night. Elijah, Audrey and Blake are also safe. That leaves Kenzie and Paige. And the one going home is … Paige. ☹ She gets lot of hugs from her friends and the judges before walking out. When Gordon asks her who she thinks might be a winner, she says she is sure it will be Hunter. Paige says, “I am super sad to be going, but I had a lot of fun here. ‘Congratulations Paige’ I have cooked some great dishes and made lifelong friends. ‘This is such an amazing dish, Paige’ ‘Thank You.’ I will go back home proud, and I will open my bakery one day.”
Episode 13
For the next Skills Test the top 11 will have to deshell, devein and cook shrimp in only 30 minutes! And only 5 can be saved from the next challenge!!!

After time is up the judges look over and taste the young chefs’ work. The 5 young cooks who are safe are: Drew, Abby, Elijah, Zachary and Uriah! The two who made the most delicious shrimp are ….. DREW AND ZACHARY! They will get a big advantage in the next stage of the competition.

The remaining six kids now must make Fried Shrimp with Marinara Sauce.

Hunter’s shrimp is cooked well. The taste is outstanding, the shrimp is delicious, and the seasoning is on point. The crunchy coating is mind-blowing, and his marinara sauce gives the shrimp a nice kick. Christina says she can confirm that Hunter is not going home tonight and welcomes him in the top 10!

Nikki also did well with the challenge. The cook on her shrimp is textbook, and the taste of the succulent shellfish is great. The flavors blend together well, and her sauce is a terrific edition to the dish. Gordon says, “This is one of the best shrimp dishes I’ve ever had.”

Sadly, Jordan’s shrimp is overcooked. It is very rubbery and has no taste. However, the breading is seasoned well, and Jordan’s sauce is very good. Aarón hopes the two elements can save him.

Kenzie nailed the cook on the shrimp. But it is way over seasoned with salt and pepper and her sauce is too spicy. Christina can only take one bite!
Audrey’s plating is all over the place, it is not MasterChef quality. However, everything on the dish is cooked well. The taste of the shrimp is amazing, and Aarón loves the breading. But her sauce is bland.

Blake’s shrimp is very undercooked. The Panko is falling of the shrimp as Gordon picks it up, he is very disappointed. On top of that Blake forgot his sauce!

HUNTER AND NIKKI are the top 2 for the challenge! Audrey and Kenzie are also safe. That leaves Jordan and Blake and the last one safe is ……..Jordan. That means Blake is going home. ☹ He gets hugs from the judges and before he walks out his friends hug him goodbye. He says he thinks Zachary will become one of the joint winners. Blake says, “I am so proud of myself. ‘Wow Blake this plate looks gorgeous! Thank you Chef.’ I have learned so much here and made amazing friends. ‘Blake, my man, this is such a tasty pie. Thank you, Aarón.’ I may not have won the title, but I feel like I have gotten so much more than that. I know that no matter what I will be an amazing chef one day.”

Episode 14
The top 10 will compete in a food truck challenge at a local park. Drew and Zachary are the team captains. Zachary wins a coin toss and gets to pick his entire Blue Team! His picks are Kenzie, Jordan, Audrey and Abby. Drew’s Red Team is: Hunter, Uriah, Elijah and Nikki.

The two teams will make Burgers and Fries and Fried Fish. On Drew’s team, Nikki burns the fries and Hunter helps her start a new batch. When Elijah needs help with the beef patties Drew steps in to assist. On Zachary’s team, he can’t get his cooks working together! As a result of this Abby puts up raw fish and burgers! Gordon gets very upset, but Kenzie and Jordan help and get them cooked. Both teams finish strong. The winning team is THE RED TEAM!!

Back in the MasterChef Kitchen, each judge gets to save one kid from the Pressure Test. Aarón saves Jordan for his work on the fries and fish. Christina saves Audrey since she had fast plating at the end of the challenge. And Gordon saves ……. Kenzie for her work on the beef.

In a twist of irony, newly returned Abby and Zachary will go head to head and make a Mini Chocolate Cake. During the cook time, Zachary’s sponge falls on the floor, but Abby helps Zachery and gives him extra batter. And when Abby is having trouble getting her cake on the plate Zachary helps her lift it with a spatula. Time is up. The two chefs hug each other and say, “May the best cake win.”

Zachary’s cake is very sloppy on the outside, but inside the layers are even and look amazing. Gordon thinks the cake is a tad under baked. When Christina tastes it she says, “Zachary, it’s delicious! The frosting tastes heavenly. I don’t think the cake is underbaked, I think it is just soft. Your sponge itself is delicious, I just want to go back for another bite. I really hope this cake can save you.”

Abby’s cake looks amazing on the outside, and the cake layers look just as good as Zachary’s. The cake itself is baked well. But she made a big mistake, she put salt instead of sugar! It spoils the great taste of the amazing, moist and fluffy cake. But her frosting is creamy and very delicious. Gordon says, if the cake had sugar it might have been the winning cake. But now it will be a hard choice who gets in the top nine.

And the one who is safe is …… Zachary. That means Abby is going home for the third time! ☹ She gets hugs from the 3 judges and when Gordon asks Abby who she thinks will win, she says she believes Drew will become one of the winners. Abby gets lots lot big hugs walking out of the MasterChef Kitchen. She says, “Coming back into this competition was everything to me. ‘Congratulations ABBY.’ I’ve never been given a second chance before in my life. Even though I was only here for a short time I’ve learned so much. ‘The shrimp is so good.’ ‘Thank you.’ ‘Well-done Abby.’ I will go back home and keep on cooking and open my little café one day.”

Episode 15
For the next Mystery Box, the top 9 will make a dessert with Nutella. The first best dish belongs to Uriah, she made Nutella Biscuits. They are baked well and taste great. You get the fluffiness of the biscuit and the creamy Nutella in one bite. Gordon says she is starting to become a real frontrunner.

The next dish belongs to Zachary, he made Nutella Stuffed Cookies. They are baked well and have a great punch of hazelnut flavor. Christina says, “The cookie is light and fluffy. The flavors are so good, very nutty and chewy. I am happy that you are now showing everyone you can bake.” Chef Gordon says he knows what a great chef Zachary is if he can elevate something like cookies.

And the last dish belongs to Elijah, he made Nutella Waffles. They are delicate and taste delicious with his amazing homemade Nutella syrup. Aarón wishes there was just one more waffle on the dish, but overall good job.

And the winner is …. ZACHARY!! He is safe and picks the teams for the upcoming Tag Team Challenge. The 4 teams are: Drew and Hunter, Nikki and Audrey, Kenzie and Elijah, and Jordan and Uriah. Zachary puts the young chefs he thinks will work well together since he wants to be nice.

The 4 teams will have to cook a BBQ Platter with: Grilled Chicken Strips, Lamb Kofta, Pork Medallions, Beef Sliders, Grilled Shrimp and Grilled Veggies.

During the cook time Drew is being a great partner with Hunter, calmly telling him what to do, not raising his voice and motivating him as he gets flustered. 😊And Hunter is doing great with the fast-paced challenge. Kenzie and Elijah have a rocky start, but once they get in a groove they finish well. Elijah does the little elements like the chicken, while Kenzie does the harder stuff like the sliders. Nikki and Audrey start well but things go awry! They are yelling at each other and messing up the elements, and some of the veggies fall in the grill! Jordan and Uriah are not communicating well. Jordan is having Uriah do 4 out of 6 elements and sticking to what he knows how to make. She is getting overwhelmed. Time is up.

Drew and Hunter’s platter looks amazing. The chicken is moist and delicious. Gordon loves the tender Lamb Koftas and Christina loves the juicy pork. Hunter nailed the cook and spice on the shrimp and both boys perfected the grilled veggies. All 3 of the judges are impressed by Drew’s creative Spicy Sliders. They are juicy and taste so delicious Aarón goes for seconds. Christina says, “I’m really astounded by the way you two worked together on this difficult challenge. Great job young men!”

Nikki and Audrey’s platter is very bad. The chicken is raw, the lamb is hammered and has no flavor. They only got one slider on the platter and it is undercooked. They forgot all about the pork and the veggies are charred. But Nikki cooked the shrimp well, and it is very tasty. Aarón says the platter is just a disaster and he expects more since Nikki and Audrey have done a lot better in previous challenges.

Kenzie and Elijah’s platter is good. Elijah’s Miso Chicken is cooked well, it is moist and tastes yummy. Kenzie nailed the cook on the pork and the sliders. The worked together and made some tasty shrimp and very good veggies. But the lamb is a tad overcooked. An overall good job.

Jordan and Uriah’s platter is not as good. Jordan’s chicken is overcooked and tastes dry. Aarón says overcooked white meat is one of his least favorite things. His veggies are mushy, and the shrimp is undercooked, it is inedible. But Uriah made juicy siders, very tender and tasty pork, and well-seasoned Lamb Kofta.

DREW and HUNTER made the best platter of the night! Elijah and Kenzie are also safe. That leaves Uriah and Jordan, and Audrey and Nikki the last safe team is … Uriah and Jordan, thanks to how well Uriah did on some of the elements. That means Nikki and Audrey are in the bottom, and the young chef who is sadly going home is …. Audrey. 😦

She gets lots of hugs from her friends and the judges alike. When asked who will win, Audrey believes Kenzie will go all the way. Before leaving Audrey says. “I am sad to go, but I feel like I did a lot here. ‘Let’s get one thing right, the protein you nailed.’ I cooked in some amazing places, I made some lifelong friends, and I made so many great dishes. ‘That pie is so good.’ ‘Thank you, Chef.’ ‘This is a simple, but amazing dish.’ ‘Thanks. Chef Gordon.’ ‘THE RED TEAM!’ I will go home and keep doing what I do best.”
Episode 16
The top 8 will compete in a 3-part baking skills test. In round one four chefs will be saved, then in the next round two young chefs will go though, leaving the last two kids to bake head to head for the last spot in the top 7.

In round 1 the kids will bake the first thing everyone learns to bake COOKIES! They must bake up 3 perfect sugar cookies.

Kenzie only got 2 cookies on the plate. Sadly, they don’t even taste that good since she added too much sugar.

Hunter’s cookies have uneven shapes, however they have a really good taste. Christina says they taste as good as the cookies she can make at Milk Bar.

Nikki’s cookies look burnt and taste burnt, and this not a good thing.

Christina loves Drew’s cookies; they are baked just the way she likes. They have nice, soft texture and taste amazing. She takes the whole cookie back to the main stage.

The edges of Zachary’s cookies are overbaked, but the middle is baked well and tastes so yummy.

Sadly, Elijah’s cookies are too big. They are under baked and falling apart.

Jordan’s cookies are hard as a rock. Aarón needs a knife to break off a bite and they are hard to chew.

Uriah nailed the bake on her cookies, they are nice and chewy. Gordon is very impressed.

Drew, Uriah, Hunter and… Zachary are safe

The 4 remaining kids must bake 3 perfect cupcakes.

Kenzie’s Raspberry Cupcakes are baked well, but some of the raspberries still have seeds in them and it ruins the texture of the sponge.

Nikki’s Chocolate Cupcakes are a tad under baked, but they still have that amazing chocolatey flavor.

Elijah’s Strawberry Cupcakes are under baked because the fresh strawberry made the sponge very wet.

And Jordan’s Vanilla Cupcakes are the bomb! The sponge is baked well, and the frosting tastes so good it’s unreal.

Nikki and Jordan are safe.

Finally, Kenzie and Elijah have to bake a flawless Chocolate Malted Lava Cake! After time is up all three judges taste both cakes without comment and walk away to confer. Both cakes are practically perfect, and it is going to be hard to decide which chef should stay and which should go home.

After much discussion it is finally decided that the last chef in the top 7 is ……. Kenzie. Sadly, that means Elijah is going home. 😦 He starts to cry, but all the kids come from where they are standing and give him a big group hug. 😊 Then the judges ask Elijah who he thinks will win, and he tearfully says it will be his buddy, Drew. All the kids walk Elijah out of the MasterChef Kitchen. He says, “I have been cooking as long as I can remember. This is the best time I ever had in my 8 years of living. ‘Congratulations Elijah.’ I came here with the ultimate goal of being the youngest MasterChef Jr winner. ‘Wow, this tastes gooood Drew!’ But to make it to the Top 8 is an accomplishment in and of itself. ‘Remind me again, how old are you?’ ‘Eight.’ ‘Eight?! Holy Mackerel!’ I’m definitely gonna miss all my new friends. ‘Let’s give Elijah a group hug.’ I got to cook for 3 of the best chefs in the world. ‘That teriyaki sauce is so good you should sell it by the jar.’ ‘Wow they taste incredible.’ I’ve learned so much these past weeks, and you can’t put a price on that. I would pay $100,000 just for this experience. ‘RED TEAM!’ YEAH!!’ I am going to go back home and see what amazing things I can cook now.”
Episode 17
The top 7 lift their Mystery Boxes and find a letter from their family. Drew’s letter says how he has been through a lot and fought though it all, and how he is one of the bravest kids his mom knows. She is very proud of him. Nikki’s letter says her dad is proud of how she follows her dreams, and her family will always support her. Hunter’s letter says his mom is very proud that he never gives up or lets anything get in the way of his goals in life, and she knows he will go far. Zachary’s letter says his dad is very proud of him and he is the best chef and baker he knows. Uriah’s letter says no matter what happens she should never give up on her dreams, and anything is possible. Kenzie’s letter says that her dad is impressed by how much she has grown, and her cooking skills have gotten better and better. And Jordan’s letter says his family knows he is the best baker ever and they know one day he will open up a bakery.

Gordon sends the young chefs to the pantry to collect ingredients for a family inspired dish. When they return they are shocked to find them waiting for them at their stations: Drew’s mom, Abby; Zachary’s dad, Gary; Kenzie’s dad, Sean; Jordan’s mom, Charlene; Nikki’s dad, Mike; Uriah’s mom, Naeemah; and Hunter’s mom, Audrey. After many hugs the kids get cooking.

The first best dish is … Uriah’s Shrimp & Rice Cakes. She makes them for her family a lot for dinner. The shrimp is glistening white and the taste of the shrimp itself is amazing. The cook on the rice is spot on, and the seasoning on both elements is on point. The dish has an overall luscious taste. Christina says she has elevated a very simple dish. Chef Aarón loves the spices and Uriah says she sells them by the jar at home. Aarón asks if he can have some, and she says sure.

The next dish belongs to Drew, he made a Pan Seared Pork Chop. It is cooked perfectly, juicy and delicious. The sear gives it a nice crunch, and his seasoning is excellent. Gordon loves it so much he takes another bite. Aarón loves his homemade Cajun sauce because it gives the pork a great amount of spice, just how his likes pork. When Christina asks Drew what this dish means to him, he says it is one of his favorite dishes to cook for his mom. Christina asks his mom to taste it and Abby says it is very good.

The last best dish belongs to Zachary. He made Pan Seared Sea Bass. The fish has a beautiful cook and it melts in the mouth. The salt and pepper lifts the taste of the sometimes-bland fish. Aarón says the dish proves that Zachary is a well-rounded chef, an amazing savory chef and a great baker.

And the winner is…DREW!!!! He can either save himself from elimination or save someone else. He wants to save one of the friends and picks Zachary. He does this since he does not want to take a free pass to the top 6.

The remaining 6 kids have to make a dish with a type of lamb: lamb chops, boneless lamb, lamb loin, lamb shank, lamb kofta or ground lamb. Drew gets to pick one for himself and hand out the other five. He picks boneless for himself. He gives Kenzie the lamb chops, Hunter gets lamb loin, Uriah gets lamb kofta, Nikki gets lamb shank and Jordan gets ground lamb.

Drew’s Five Spice Boneless Lamb is a perfect medium rare, it has great texture and delicious taste. The lamb still has its juiciness inside, you just want to eat more and more of it. He nailed the Five Spice seasoning because it is not too spicy, and it brings up the taste of the lamb. Gordon says Five Spice is hard to get right and he has mastered it at age 13. The dish is so good it could be put in any of Gordon’s restaurants. Drew is thrilled.

Jordan’s Lamb Burger is very sloppy. The bun is burnt on both sides, and even though the lamb is cooked well it has no seasoning and tastes bland. Aarón says the dish is way too simple for the top 7 of Masterchef Jr, and it is his weakest dish so far.

Nikki’s Lamb Shanks are cooked well, but she did not chop the fat off off one piece, and it has an unpleasant taste. The other piece is moist and well-seasoned and tastes better. Gordon says, “Oh Nikki, if you had cut the fat off this shank, it would have been such an amazing dish. What a shame.”

Hunter’s Lamb Loin is perfectly cooked the meat is so tasty and does not has a lot of fat. His seasoning is the best he has done so far. Christina says, “Hunter, this is one of the best dishes I have ever tasted from you. The lamb is so tasty and flavorful. I can tell you that you are not going home tonight.”

Uriah’s Lamb Koftas are incredible. Her plating is spot on and it looks like it came out of a high-class restaurant. The taste of the lamb is heavenly and the koftas have spectacular seasoning. Gordon loves them so much he wants to eat another one.

Two of Kenzie’s Lamb Chops look very rare and almost raw. Gordon says they are ready to be put back in the field. However, she got one chop right, it is very tasty, and has great seasoning. But is it good enough to get her in the top 6?

Tonight, there was no middle ground. DREW, URIAH and HUNTER are the top 3 of the night And sadly Kenzie, Nikki and Jordan are in the bottom 3 and the one going home is …….. Jordan. 😦

Chef Aarón says he loved seeing Jordan cook and bake, and he wants to help him start up his baking business. Jordan thanks him, he also thinks Hunter will win the whole thing and gets of hugs walking out. He says. “I can’t believe that Aarón is helping me with my business, it means a lot to me. Overall, I had a great time here. ‘Congratulations Jordan.’ I got to cook in amazing places and make amazing friends. ‘It is a very good dish.’ ‘Thank You.’ I learned so much. ‘The winner is, JORDAN.’ I made my family proud; I made my friends proud; and I made myself proud. I will go home with a smile on my face and get to work on my dream of opening up my own bakery.”
Episode 18
The top 6 will cook in the Classic Restaurant Takeover! The Blue Team is Drew, Uriah and Hunter. And the Red Team is Zachary, Nikki and Kenzie. The teams get to pick their captains! Drew is the Blue Team Captain and the Red Team Captain is Nikki.
The teams will cook Cod Fish and Spot Prawns for the Appetizers and Ribeye Steak and Salmon for the Entrées.

On the Red Team Kenzie is having trouble with the spot prawns, but Nikki helps her cook them. And Zachary does amazing on the cod, every plate has perfectly cooked fish.

On Drew’s team Hunter is getting very flustered and overheated in the fast-paced kitchen. Drew calls for a medic just to check him out, and Christina takes Hunter outside for fresh air. She tells him that he is in the top 6 and she, along with the judges know he can do this. After a tall drink of water, he feels better and gets back to work. In an amazing comeback he nails the spot prawns. Uriah and Drew do a great job cooking the cod.

Now it’s time for the Entrées. On Drew’s Blue Team Uriah’s salmon is sticking to the pan, but Drew helps her get it off before the fish gets too overcooked. And Drew cooks all the steaks like a pro. No overcooked or undercooked dishes go up to the pass. Hunter plating is beautiful, truly restaurant quality work. And the Blue Team is done! They group hug and can now relax. Drew tells his team they did amazing. Hunter says it is the most stressful thing he has ever done.

But Nikki’s Red Team is way behind and customers are walking out! Gordon loses it when they put up raw salmon and beef! He has Drew run into the kitchen, and he helps the team finish. Drew cooks the steak to the right temp. He puts Zachary and Nikki on salmon and Kenzie does the plating. They finish service.

And the winning team is obviously the BLUE TEAM.

For the Pressure Test Nikki, Zachary and Kenzie have to make 3 chicken three ways: breast, drumsticks and fried.

Nikki’s chicken breast is cooked well and tastes nice and juicy. But she added too much seasoning and it is overpowering. Her drumsticks look amazing, but they are undercooked near the bone. The meat the judges can try does not taste that good. However, she nailed the cook and taste on her fried chicken, everything is well seasoned.

Zachary’s chicken breast is a hair overcooked, but it still tastes juicy and is seasoned well. His drumsticks have a great sear on the skin, and the taste is nice and crispy. Chef Aarón loves his double coated fried chicken. It is crispy and flavorful.

Kenzie’s chicken breast is cooked well but tastes bland since it lacks seasoning. Her drumsticks are cooked and seasoned well, but the skin is not crispy at all. Her fried chicken is raw on the bone and the judges can’t taste it!

Zachary made the best dishes of the night. That leaves Nikki and Kenzie, since one of their dishes were raw the judges pick the best of the 2 others … and they belong to …….. Nikki. That means Kenzie is going home. ☹ She thinks Nikki will win the whole thing and gets lots of hugs walking out. Kenzie says, “This was such a fun experience. I cooked lots of great dishes. ‘The steak is amazing, good job.’ ‘Thank you chef.’ I made great friends. I never gave up, and I made it so far. ‘Congratulations KENZIE!’ ‘The burger is very tasty.’ I will go back home and never stop cooking.”

Episode 19
The top 5 will cook beef in a 3 round Pressure Test for the Semi Finals. After the first round two kids will be picked to be in the finale. Then 3 will cook in the next round and one will make it to the finale. Then 2 will go head-to-head for the last spot in the finale.

First up Beef Tips. Drew’s beef is nice and rare, the flavor is amazing is melts in the mouth and the seasoning is incredible. Nikki’s meat is super overcooked, it is very chewy. It also has no seasoning. Hunter’s beef is cooked well and tastes amazing. But he also forgot to season it. Uriah nailed the cook of her steak and the taste is divine. The spice blend she made is great, one of the best Aarón has tasted. Sadly, Zachary’s beef is so undercooked it is like a tartare. The first 2 chefs in the Finale are ….. DREW AND URIAH!!!! They get their chef coats and go up to the balcony.

The remaining 3 kids have to make Homemade Meatballs. Hunter’s Spicy Meatballs are cooked amazingly, his creative use of spice is spectacular. Nikki nailed the cook on the beef, but again, her dish lacks seasoning. Gordon says it is too bland for a top 5 chef. Zachary’s meat is very overcooked and tastes dry, but he does a good job with the seasoning. The next kid in the Finale is … HUNTER!!!! He gets his chef coat and runs up to the balcony.

Now, Zachary and Nikki must cook NYC Strip, Hanger Steak and a Filet Mignon all it the same time! It is a very intense challenge. When the young chefs bring the steaks to the front the judges taste them, say “thanks” and head back to the main stage to discuss the results.

The best NYC Strip belongs to … Nikki since she seasoned it better. The best Hanger Steak belongs to Zachary since he did better trimming the fat without losing the juicy tenderness. And the best tasting and seasoned Filet Mingnon belongs to ……. Zachary.
So sadly, Nikki is going home. ☹ She says doesn’t know who will win since all four remaining chefs are so good. Arm in arm, she is walked out of the kitchen by her fellow young chefs.

Nikki says, “Coming into this competition I cooked a lot of rustic food. ‘This is some of the best shrimp I ever had.’ But now I know how to make a restaurant quality dish with refinement, finesse and beauty. ‘This is amazing plating Nikki! Great job.’ ‘Thank you chef.’ I’ve learned to build more flavor, which is something I thought I already had. ‘Can I take some of these for later?’ ‘You take as many you want. I have some at my station you want those to?’ I had a great time here and made lots of incredible friends. ‘Blue Team! Congratulations!’ ‘Congratulations Nikki!’ A lot of people spend their entire lives wondering what they want to do when they grow up. Now, I know.”
Episodes 20/21
It’s the Masterchef Jr Finale! Drew, Uriah, Zachary and Hunter will cook an Appetizer, An Entrée and a Dessert in 3 rounds, 4 plates per round. Along with Gordon, Christina and Aarón, previous MasterChef Winner, Christine Ha will be the guest judge. All the past contestants and the finalists’ families are up on the balcony to cheer them on.

Drew made Cajun Calamari. It is cooked perfectly, but Gordon says it is all about the taste, and the taste is amazing! The squid has the right texture and it is unbelievably crispy. Chef Aarón says the spices are well balanced, and he loves the fact that Drew took a huge risk by not just seasoning the breading but also seasoning the squid itself. It is all fabulous. Chef Christine loves his sauce. She was worried it would be overpowering, but it gives everything wonderful heat. Christina says it is the best calamari she has ever eaten!

Uriah made Beef Pierogis. Sadly, the beef is overcooked because she left it in the pressure cooker too long. However, Christina says that the dough is fantastic and helps hide the fact that the beef is overcooked. Chef Aarón comments on Uriah’s spice blend, “Young lady, the combination of spices is creative and powerful. The result is out of this world! I love it.” Gordon is disappointed about the beef, but agrees the dish comes together in the end.

Zachary’s handmade Ricotta Ravioli looks beautiful and is cooked well. But Gordon says, “You had 60 minutes to cook something special and I wonder if this dish is too simple for the finale.” Chef Christine says she thinks pasta from scratch is difficult and the 3-cheese blend is heavenly. She loves his homemade sauce; it is so good it would be tasty on its own. Aarón says the pasta tastes amazing, but his ravioli has too much cheese. Christina agrees, her ravioli is a bit out of balance.

Hunter made Kentucky Style Chicken Wings. They look amazing and are cooked to perfection. Christina loves how they are nice and juicy, which is hard to get with chicken wings. Aarón loves the Kentucky spices because they lift up the taste of the amazing chicken. Chef Christine loves how he got the skin super crispy; it gives it a nice crunch. Gordon says chicken wings are usually simple, but Hunter’s are elevated. “This appetizer shows what a good chef you are. These are the most sophisticated chicken wings I have ever been served.”

Drew made a Panko Crusted Double Cut Lamb Chop. Gordon slowly cuts into it and says, “This lamb is not perfect, it is beyond perfect! The meat is a nice medium rare. The taste is wonderful; it is melt in your mouth good. Honestly young man, this is better than I can do.” Aarón says Drew nailed the Cajun spice on the lamb. The combination of the crunchy Panko and the flavorful spice enhances the moist lamb more than he thought possible! Chef Christine says this is the juiciest, most delicious lamb chop she has ever eaten, and she can’t believe a 13-year-old can cook this well. She wants to finish her entire portion.

Uriah made Pan Seared Halibut. The fish is cooked amazingly. Gordon says the fish is very tasty and the skin is crispy and well-seasoned. Chef Christine loves that Uriah’s spices give it a nice kick without overpowering the fish. But Christina and Aarón both say the rice is overcooked. Gordon disagrees. He loves the rice, and argues the texture and seasoning is textbook.

Zachary made BBQ Pork Chops. Sadly, Gordon says they are overcooked and taste slightly dry. However, Chef Christine loves his homemade BBQ sauce because it lifts up the taste of the pork. She says it is okay to make mistakes since they make you better. Aarón loves Zachary’s fried rice. Christina says, “Zachary, you nailed everything but the pork. I really hope you have a great dessert up your sleeve.”

Hunter made Lobster and Waffles. Gordon says he has never seen anything like it before and hopes it will work. Hunter says he hopes so too, since the idea just popped into his head and he is winging it. Gordon’s serving of lobster is glistening and tastes amazing. Chef Christine says, “The lobster is very moist, and the edition of the seasoned panko is so good. And I love your waffles, so fluffy and light! Great job.” All four judges love his white wine butter sauce. Chef Aarón says it is a great twist on Chicken and Waffles and if Hunter opens up his café one day it has to go on the menu.

Drew made a Cajun Bread Pudding with Vanilla-Bourbon Ice Cream. Gordon is very skeptical, but the other judges say it is popular in Louisiana, USA. When Gordon tastes it, he decides it is actually super delicious! The bake is spot on and the praline is to-die-for. Chef Christine loves the heavy hit of cinnamon and crunch of the candied pecans. This is one of the best bread puddings she has ever tasted. And his creamy grown-up flavored ice cream is the perfect compliment. Aarón says, “Mijo, you hit this one out of the park! This dessert reminds me of dishes I grew up eating in my Abuela’s cocina. There is no higher praise I can give a fellow chef.”

Uriah made a Dark Chocolate Tart. The tart shell is baked well, but Chef Aarón says it has too much cream filling. Chef Christine agrees the cream overpowers, but she loves the crust itself. Christina loves the extra chocolate cream and says a tart like this could be sold at Milk Bar. Gordon says, “Let’s get one thing straight, the tart is great. The pastry is flaky, the cream is rich, and the overall flavor is mind blowing. Well done, young lady.”

Zachary presents the judges with a Chocolate Sphere hiding a Mini Olive Oil Cake inside. Gordon thinks the dessert looks wonderful. And when Zachary pours the hot caramel sauce on the sphere it melts like magic. Chef Christine loves the decadent taste of the melted chocolate and caramel sauce with the moist sponge. It has just the right amount of sweetness and is very rich. Aarón loves the mini cake inside. “This cake tastes amazing. You have struck a perfect balance here and I will need to eat the entire dessert.” Christina says it is the best dessert she has seem from him in the competition. She also wants to finish her plate.

Hunter made a Derby Pie. The presentation is dazzling. Gordon says the crust is nice and flaky and the creamy filling is delicious. Aarón says the whipped cream on top is textbook and a feast for the eyes. Chef Christine says the chocolate and pecans taste stupendous. “All the flavors work together to make the best Derby Pie I have ever tasted! Nicely done.” And Christina wants more of his vanilla bean whipped cream because it is that good. She says, “This dessert is a great way to end your journey in the Master Chef Kitchen. You started out with a great dessert and you are ending with a great dessert. You should be very proud of yourself, Hunter.”

Time to deliberate.

After much discussion the judges return to the stage to reveal the winner. Gordon says, “You should all be incredibly proud of yourselves for making it this far. I know your families are proud of you, and we judges are proud of you too! We asked ourselves which two young chefs prepared meals that came together best? Which two meals would we definitely what to eat again? …”

The judges tell the kids it’s time to take their place on the main stage …

And the two winners of this Fantasy Season of MasterChef Jr. are …

Congratulations goes to …


Both boys are ecstatic, but have drastically different reactions. Hunter is standing perfectly still, in shock, and Drew is so happy he is bouncing up and down, eyes tearing up, and hugging his fellow competitors. Both boys get MasterChef Jr Trophies and $100,000. Amazing!

And Uriah and Zachary get Masterchef Jr medals and $50,000 each. Not too bad!

Drew says, “I can’t believe I won MasterChef Jr! I have been dreaming about this for so long and I did it! I have shown other kids that no matter what anyone else says you can make your dreams happen.”

Hunter says, “Honestly, I’m in shock. I never thought I would win. This proves you should never give up! No matter what, you can do anything you put your mind to.”

Uriah says, “I am so happy for Drew and Hunter and very proud of myself. Even though I didn’t get top prize, I totally feel like a winner. This has been a great day!”

And Zachary says, “I’m thrilled for my friends. They earned it. And even though I did not win today, I know that I will still be an amazing chef one day.”

The 2 winners also say they made so many friends that they will be friends with forever and then together they shout …


MasterChef Jr Season 7 My Way

This takes place after my season 7 that I made up, so technically it is my season 8. 😊
In this season there are 24 kids competing and the judges are chefs Gordon, Aarón and Christina. Each judge will pick 8 cooks be on their team and each judge will mentor their young home cooks throughout the competition.
Team Gordon: Sadie, Kyle, Malia, Ben, Reid, Kate, Miguel & Ashely.
Team Christina: Aaron, Jaala, Che, Evie, Shannen, Mateo, Tal & Brielle.
Team Aarón: Rhashad, Thomas, Neko, Ivy, Nayeli, Jayden, Matthew & Talulah.

Episode 1
For the first Mystery Box the top 24 cook a Signature Dish and the judges pick the best dish on each team. The first dish belongs to Reid. He made a grilled Pork Chop. The cook is amazing and the sear gives it a nice crunch. Gordon says, “This is an amazing start young man. I am so happy I gave you an apron.” The next best dish belongs to Jaala. She made Honey Cake. The cake is nice and fluffy and you can really see the layers. Christina says, “Jaala with this slice of cake you can go all way! Great job!” And finally, Jayden’s Fried Hawaiian Shrimp is chosen. It is seasoned well and the shrimp is just amazing. Aarón loves the spiced Panko crumbs. He says, “I am in shock. If this is how you cook at age 12, I can’t wait to see what other dishes you have up your sleeve. Amazing job buddy.”
And the winner is … ALL 3 KIDS!!! They are safe. Now the judges will pick the weakest dishes of the night. Mateo from Christina’s team made very dry sea bass. Thomas from Aarón’s team served raw beef. And Ashley from Gordon’s team baked a mess of a cake. All the other kids are safe and join the three winning cooks on the balcony. The bottom 3 can make their signature dish again or make a whole new dish. And tonight, 2 will go home!!!!
Mateo makes Sea Bass again and it is slightly over cooked, plus the seasoning is bland. It’s a good dish, but nothing special. Second time around Thomas’s steak is perfectly cooked and tastes all right, but Gordon thinks it is over seasoned. Ashley bakes cupcakes this time, but they sink and the insides are underbaked.
And the one who is safe from elimination is ….. Thomas.
Sadly, that means Ashley and Mateo are going home. All the kids come downstairs to hug them goodbye. Christina gives them gift certificates for free cupcakes at Milk Bar in NYC. Cool. 😊
Now 22 cooks remain.
Team Aarón – 8, Team Christina – 7 & Team Gordon -7

Episode 2
The top 22 break down a whole salmon in 20 minutes! Then, the judges inspect the work and decide who is safe for the night and who is not.
Ivy Yes, Ben Yes, Shannen No, Reid No, Jayden Yes, Matthew Yes, Neko Yes, Kyle No, Nayeli No, Thomas No, Jaala Yes, Talulah No, Kate Yes, Che Yes, Miguel No, Sadie Yes, Rhashad Yes, Evie No, Tal Yes, Aaron No, Brielle Yes and Malia yes. The judges praise JAYDEN & SADIE for doing the very best of the 12.
Next, the remaining 9 kids are asked to make a salmon & rice dish. Again, 2 kids will be going home.
Thomas’s salmon is cooked right and the skin is crisp, however the rice has no seasoning and tastes bland. Aarón says, “Overall, a good job.”
Aaron’s salmon is super dry and Gordon can’t even sallow it. He says, “The only one who would like this dish is my cat!” However he nailed the cook on the rice.
Evie’s salmon is a hair overcooked, but Christina loves the way she put the rice between the fish and the skin. “It tastes great and has a bit of pizzazz.”
Reid nailed the cook on the fish and rice and the crispy skin is one of the best Gordon has ever tasted. He says, “If you keep cooking like this, I mean forget the top 20, you will be in the top 4!”
Talulah’s cook is spot on and her plating is professional. Aarón loves how she is putting her French background into all her dishes.
Miguel made a big mistake when he plated his salmon skin-side down. It not only made the fish soggy but his rice as well!
Despite Nayeli’s sloppy plating and over cooked rice, her fish tastes amazing
Kyle’s salmon is glistening pink and the skin is crisp. Christina says, “Your dish is mind-blowing!”
Shannen’s dish looks great, but sadly, her fish is raw and the rice is like bullets. Christina says, “I am very disappointed, I know you can do better than this.”
REID, KYLE & TALULAH are the top 3 . Thomas, Evie and Nayeli are also safe. That leaves Miguel, Shannen and Aaron. In the end, Aaron is safe. So unfortunately, Miguel and Shannen are going home. The young home cooks gather for a big group hug. These kids will be friends for life. Aarón steps forward to give Shannen & Miquel signed aprons from his New Orleans restaurant Johnny Sánchez! They love them. 😊

Now 20 remain.
Team Aarón – 8. Team Christina – 6. Team Gordon -6.

Episode 3
The top 20 arrive at a beach for the first exciting Team Challenge. They will be cooking Fish & Chips for 101 guests. Jayden and Sadie are the Captains and need to pick their teams. Jayden picks Jaala, Aaron, Rhashad, Brielle, Reid, Thomas, Ivy, Nayeli &Talulah for the Blue Team. Sadie picks Tal, Malia, Evie, Kate, Kyle, Che, Ben, Neko & Matthew for Red Team.
Right off the bat Nayeli from the Blue Team gets stressed with the fast paced service and begins to cry. Jayden takes her aside and offers a hug. He kindly assures her, “I would not have picked you for my team if I did not think you could do it. I know you can!” Nayeli smiles and wants to try again. 😊 Meanwhile, the Red Team puts up raw fish and Gordon blows his top. Tal steps in and helps fix it, but they do get behind with plates going out. The votes are tallied and the wining team is the … BLUE TEAM!!!!!
Back in the MasterChef Kitchen Sadie gets to save 3 members of her team from the dreaded Pressure Test. She gives it some serious thought and decides Tal, Neko and Matthew are most deserving. They are thankful and rush to join the Blue Team on the balcony. The remaining kids have make a perfect Cheesecake.
Sadie’s cheesecake looks wonderful. It cuts well and tastes delicious. Gordon says, “Let’s get one thing right, the flavors and texture are spot on. I just wish you had done a better job with the topping. It’s a bit messy. But, overall, amazing job.”
Evie put too much butter in her crust and it is too thick. Aarón can’t even cut through it. But Christina says, “Still, the taste is amazing.”
Che’s cheesecake is absolutely incredible. He nailed the crust and the cheese has just the right creamy flavoring. Christina says, “This dessert is so good I want to have in Milk Bar.”
Malia’s cheesecake has a nice taste, but she burned the bottom.
Kyle’s crust is well baked but the cheesecake is very bitter. Gordon wonders if he mixed up the ingredients.
Kate’s cheesecake lacks filling so it is much too thin. Aarón says, “Your flavors are here and I love them. You just need to get your proportions sorted out.
And finally Ben’s cheesecake is so underbaked it’s leaking cheese and it does not taste good at all.
CHE had the best cheesecake of the night. Sadie, Kate and Malia also did well enough to stay. That leaves Kyle , Evie and Ben. And the one going home is … Ben.☹ He’s pretty sad but he gets lots of hugs from his friends. Before he leaves the kitchen Gordon gifts him with a large John Boos Cutting Board. Ben is all smiles and has to ask Che to help him carry it out! 😊
Now there are 19.
Team Aarón – 8. Team Christina – 6. Team Gordon – 5.

Episode 4
The top 19 run into the MasterChef Kitchen ready for the next Mystery Box Challenge. They lift the boxes to find fresh picked apples. They must make a sweet or savory dish highlighting this simple fruit.
The judges will taste the three best dishes. The first belongs to Che. He made an usual Apple Crusted Steak. The meat is nice and pink and apple crumble crust is fantastic. Christina says, “I’m thrilled to see you took a risk here. Desserts are expected, but you created the unexpected. Nice job!”
The next dish belongs to Ivy. She made an Apple Tartlet. Gordon said, “Your crust and cream are perfection. But the apple slices are a bit too big for such a small dessert.”
And the third dish belongs to Aaron. He made a Mini Apple Pie that had lots of potential, but sadly does not come through. Aarón says, “This mini pie has amazing flavors, the cinnamon bursts in my mouth. But unfortunately there are just not enough apples in your dessert. Dude, it’s an apple pie, I want it bursting apples!”
And the winner is … CHE! He is safe from elimination and he gets to save 10 other kids as well. He chooses Thomas, Tal, Kyle, Sadie, Ivy, Brielle, Rhashad, Aaron, Evie & Malia. They all rush to the balcony to enjoy Apple Pie A la Mode prepared by Christina! 😊
The remain 8 kids must make Churros. A churro is a fried-dough pastry—predominantly choux— dusted with sugar or cinnamon. Reid’s Churros are super burnt and the Chocolate Sauce is loose. Gordon says, “You’ve got one foot out the door. Unless these taste really good you will back hunting in Newnan.” They do taste pretty good, but Gordon doesn’t know if it is enough to keep him in the competition.
Nayeli’s Churros are the bomb. They have the right amount sugar dusting and Aarón loves the Chocolate Sauce .
Jayden’s Churros are very good. They are nice and crisp and have the best cook on them and the Chocolate Sauce is amazing. Aarón says, “These are the best I have ever had. And I have eaten A LOT of churros in my lifetime!”
Matthew’s Churros are very small, but they are packed with flavor. Gordon says, “They are small but amazing, just like you.” 😊
Jaala had success with both the pastry and the dipping sauce. Christina says, “They are amazing Jaala! I really think if you keep cooking like this you have a chance to win the whole thing.”
Neko made a big mistake with her Churros. She dusted them in salt in place of sugar, so they taste very bad. And her Chocolate Sauce is just ok.
Talulah nailed the taste and texture of her Churros, but her Chocolate Sauce is gloppy. And sadly, Kate’s Churros are underbaked and floppy. Gordon asks if she has given up
and Kate says she has not. Luckily, her Chocolate Sauce is die to for. It is so good Gordon licks it from his fingers 😊.

JAYDEN, JAALA and NAYELI are the top 3. So, sadly, Neko, Reid and Kate are the bottom 3. Kate is the first saved. And the next kid who is safe is … Reid. This means Neko is the next to go home☹. All the kids give her a hug and tell her they will miss her. Aarón gives her a MasterChef Baking Tool Set and tells her to keep on baking! Neko promises she will 😊
Now, 18 are left.
Team Aarón-7. Team Christina-6. Team Gordon-5.
Episode 5
Christina friends are getting married and the top 18 will be cooking lamb and salmon for the guests! Che is the Red Team Captain and he picks Ivy, Kyle, Reid, Matthew, Malia, Jaala , Kate & Tal. Thomas is the Blue Team Captain and he picks Jayden, Rhashad, Sadie, Nayeli, Evie, Brielle, Talulah & Aaron.
On the Blue Team eager Thomas is moving way too fast and drops an entire tray of COOKED LAMB!!!! Panic happens, but Jayden and Sadie remain calm and quickly save the team by getting more lamb in the oven. On the Red Team Kyle mistakenly puts up raw salmon, but Che catches it before it goes out to the dining room. Reid and Jaala fire it again.
The guests at the wedding place their votes and the winning team is the … RED TEAM!!!
Back in the MasterChef Kitchen Thomas gets to save either just himself or 5 of his teammates. It doesn’t take a second for him to decide he wants to save 5 of his friends. He chooses Sadie, Rhashad, Nayeli, Aaron & Evie. The remaining 4 have to make authentic Fried Chicken. And one of the four cooks will be going home.
During the cook time Talulah discovers her chicken is still raw near the bone, but she gets it back in the oven in time. All four home cooks are careful with their deep fryers and careful not to get burned by the splatters of oil.
Thomas’s drumsticks are overcooked and dry, ultimately they have no flavor. He tears up and Jayden gives him a nice hug, telling him it’ll be okay.
The cook of Jayden’s chicken is spot on. The outside is golden brown crispy and the inside is juicy and tender.
Talulah’s wings are a tad overcooked, however she seasoned the breading well.
And sadly Brielle’s chicken is raw and not safe for the judges to taste.
JAYDEN made the best chicken of the night. Not surprising, Brielle is the cook going home. Uncooked poultry is always a serious problem. The other home cooks gather around her to say good bye and Christina brings her a brand new deep fryer. “Maybe you’ll want to practice fried chicken at home with your family!” Brielle laughs and says her parents are going to be thrilled. 😊
Now there are 17 .
Team Aarón – 7. Team Christina – 5. Team Gordon – 5.
Episode 6
The top 17 return to the MasterChef Kitchen to find it is a Mystery Box Challenge. They find scallops and are asked to make a restaurant quality scallop dish. The judges also announce that one of the three weakest will be going home before the Elimination Round.
The first weakest dish belongs to Talulah. Her Pan Seared Scallops are rubbery and dry and the don’t have any seasoning.
Matthew’s Baked Scallops are undercooked and fall apart when Gordon cuts into them.
And Aaron fried his scallops too long and they are overdone. And the one going home is … Matthew. He is shocked and very sad, wiping tears from his eyes. But all the kids hug him and tell him how much they are going to miss him. Gordon brings a Matthew a special invitation to bring his family and friends to dine at Gordon Ramsay Steak in NYC! This cheers him up a bit! 😊
Next, the judges each pick the top two dishes from their mentor teams. Aarón chooses THOMAS & IVY, Christina chooses CHE & TAL, and Gordon chooses REID & SADIE. They are all safe, but the best dish belongs to THOMAS. He will get a BIG advantage in the next stage.
The remaining 10 kids have to make Fried Mac & Cheese. During the cook time Jaala burns her breading but she fixes it just in time. TIME IS UP Jaala’s dish looks amazing, it has the right amount of mac and cheese and perfect Panko crust. Christina says, “Seeing how you did not give up when things were going wrong shows me that you belong here. Amazing job!”
Aaron nailed the cook on the mac and cheese, but the panko is a bit over browned.
Rhashad’s mac and cheese is gloopy but the taste of everything together saves it.
Kyle’s crust fell off and he overcooked the mac and cheese, but the seasoning and flavors just sang.
Sadly, Nayeli’s fried mac and cheese is very soggy and falling apart☹.
Kate’s mac and cheese balls taste very good inside but they are too hard on the outside.
Jayden’s fried dish is amazing, the mac and cheese is super creamy and the fried crust is nice and crunchy. Aarón says, “You continue and continue to amaze me! Great job!”
Evie’s plate is perfect, the homemade taste is divine.
Talulah’s mac and cheese is delicious, but her coating is overcooked and carries a bitter aftertaste.
And finally, Malia’s dish is actually burned on the outside. Gordon says, “Unfortunately, young lady, this is unappetizing. It’s a shame.”
JAALA, JAYDEN and EVIE are the top 3 and Kyle, Nayeli and Malia are on the bottom. And the next one going home tonight is … Nayeli.
She is so disappointed. She gets a big hug from Jayden before all the other kids surround her with cheers and well wishes. Jayden even picks her up so she can see the Aarón is on his way over to bring her a huge wheel of aged cheddar cheese. Nayeli is stunned, but thrilled too. She says, “Cheeeeesssee un Crackers!” Jayden helps her turn it on its side and roll it out of the MasterChef Kitchen.
15 Left .
Team Aarón – 5. Team Christina – 5. Team Gordon – 5.

Episode 7
Today we start with a Chicken Dish Team Challenge. Since Thomas made the best dish last time he is safe from elimination and goes straight to the balcony after dividing the remaining 14 into teams of two. He pairs up Jayden & Ivy, Kate & Reid, Malia & Sadie, Che & Kyle, Aaron & Jaala, Tal & Talulah and Evie & Rhashad.
Jayden & Ivy make Pan Seared Buttermilk Chicken Breast. The chicken is cooked spectacularly and it tastes divine. Aarón loves how they kept it juicy using flavorful buttermilk. “This is a great dish made by 2 great members of my team!” 😊
Kate & Reid make Fried Chicken. Unfortunately, it is overcooked inside and out. The meat is dry and the Panko is over browned. Gordon says, “I really expected more from you two. I am very disappointed.” ☹
Together, Che & Kyle make NYC Style Fried Chicken and it is cooked beautifully. The batter fried coating has a really nice crunch and the seasoning is amazing. Christina says, “Overall the taste here is nothing short of delicious!” 😊
Aaron & Jaala’s Fancy Chicken Breast is not too fancy. Chef Aarón doesn’t want a second bite. “I’m sorry to tell you that this breast is way overcooked. I wouldn’t be able to serve this in my restaurants. It’s just not MasterChef quality here.” ☹
Tal & Talulah’s Spicy Chicken Wings are very good. They are cooked well and have the just the right amount of spice. When Gordon asks who mixed the spices for the rub, the team says they worked together to decide how much pepper was needed. “Well, let’s get one thing straight, you nailed that spice mix. I’d like to get copy of that recipe.” 😊
Rhashad & Evie’s Smoked Chicken Thighs are a simple but effective dish. Christina is impressed with the execution. “The meat is tender, the skin is crisp, and that hint of smoke is genius. Super good you two. Be proud.” 😊
And last but not least, Sadie & Malia. This team struggled to get the chicken cooked and only ended up getting one chicken leg on the plate. And that was undercooked! Gordon says, “Oh dear, oh dear, oh dear, oh dear. What happened here ladies? This will not do. Are you ready to go home?” ☹ They say “NO!” They say, “We know we can do better!”
The judges decide the best chicken dish of the evening belongs to … JAYDEN & IVY! Che & Kyle, Tal & Talulah and Evie & Rhashad have also made good dishes, and they are all safe.
The remaining 6 kids will have 60 minutes to make a Cheese Soufflé. Gordon explains they can bring their dish up to be tasted when it is ready. They get to it and eventually all six soufflés are completed and tasted by the judges.
REID’s is the best. It is light and airy and creamy and perfectly risen. Sadie, Jaala & Malia also make good soufflés and are safe from elimination. Unfortunately, Aaron’s soufflé has a bit of eggshells inside and Kate’s is undercooked and kind of soupy. Aaron is safe, and sadly Kate is going home. ☹ She gets lots of hugs from her friends and Gordon gives her a new ramekin set so she can practice at home. She is pretty thrilled about that. 😊
Now there are 14.
Team Aarón – 5. Team Christina – 4. Team Gordon – 4.

Episode 8
The top 14 will be cooking either filet mignon or sea bass for Firefighters, Doctors, Nurses & EMTS. Jayden and Ivy are Team Captains. They play Rock-Paper-Scissors to see who gets the first pick! Ivy wins first pick!
Ivy’s Blue Team: Malia, Kyle, Tal, Talulah, Reid & Evie . Jayden’s Red Team: Jaala, Thomas, Rhashad, Sadie, Aaron & Che.
On the Blue Team Reid loses track of time and leaves the expertly seared filet in the oven way too long. They dry out and are practically burnt. Ivy tells her team they will have to switch their menu to the sea bass. Malia steps up and cooks them at lightning speed.
Meanwhile, over on the Red Team, Aaron struggles at the grill and puts up steak so raw Gordon says, “Come on! It is moo-moo blue!” Luckily, Jayden catches it too and gets it back in the oven. For some reason, plates are going out from this side at a slower pace than the Blue side.
The Life Saving Guests vote and decide the winning team is the … RED TEAM! On the Blue Team, Malia is saved from the Pressure Test because of her amazing job cooking the sea bass under pressure.
The remaining 6 face the dreaded Pressure Test: One Dozen Cupcakes.
At the beginning of the pressure test Reid is still a bit flustered and has to redo his cupcakes because he forgot the sugar! He rushes at the end and has to serve them in the tins. Unfortunately, his cupcakes are underbaked. Gordon says, “This is just not your day young man. I can’t get the cupcake out of the tin. I’m just going to use my fork!” And then, “Well, that tastes amazing! 5 more minutes in the oven and you would have a winner here. Good for you for not giving up.”
Ivy’s vanilla cupcakes are pretty in the box, but when Aarón bites into one he says, “ They taste okay, but they need more flavor, more frosting, more everything a cupcake is supposed to be!” ☹
The bake on Kyle’s double chocolate cupcakes is spot on. Christina says, “I love the velvety frosting, Kyle. And the cake is moist and perfectly balanced. I want to send this batch to my family!” 😊
Evie’s cupcakes are a tad overbaked but they still taste amazing. Aarón says, “It’s unfortunate, because the flavors are here. I love the pineapple and coconut in the creamy frosting. But the cupcakes were in the oven about 3 minutes too long.” ☹
Tal had issues with technique. His pumpkin spice cupcakes were underbaked and stuck to the paper liners. Gordon says, “It was a nice idea young man, but they look a mess, and no amount of cream cheese frosting is going to fix the bake on these little orange puddings.” ☹
Tallulah’s matcha tea cupcakes taste amazing, but they are just too big. Christina says, “You were on your way to a perfect cupcake here Tallulah, but you put too much batter into the tins. The cupcakes have muffin tops, and they barely fit in the box. And you needed so much more frosting to cover them. But the cake, is very, very good.”
KYLE made the best cupcakes of the night. Ivy, Evie and Talulah are safe. That leaves Tal and Reid. And the young home cook going home is … Tal.
Tal receives many nice hugs and goodbyes from his friends. Before he leaves the MasterChef Kitchen Christiana gives him a Cupcake Kit so he can perfect his cupcake game. He promises he will post his progress on his Instagram account and Christina promises she will follow him ❤
Now there are 13.
Team Aarón – 5. Team Christina – 4 Team Gordon – 4.

Episode 9
The top 13 lift their Mystery Boxes to find Eggs! They are asked to make a restaurant quality dish that stars the incredible edible egg. Gordon, Christina and Aarón watch closely as the cooks create their dishes and choose three they want to taste.
The first dish is Evie’s Fried Egg Supreme. The cook is spot on and Aarón loves how the yolk is nice and runny. He says, “I’ve seen line cooks that can’t nail the cook on fried eggs. You did something special here, young lady. Nice job.”
The second dish the judges want to try belongs to Sadie. Her Goat Cheese Egg Cups are seasoned well and taste amazing. Gordon says, “I think this is your best dish so far. The goat cheese is surprisingly pleasing and your egg is light and fluffy. A delicious bite. Well done.”
And the third dish the judges choose is Kyle’s Poached Egg. The whites are a bit sloppy but the yolk runs like a dream. Christina says, “The look of your dish has let down Kyle, because this egg is so yummy. A lot of chefs struggle with the perfectly poached egg, and I admire you for trying this difficult technique.”
The Mystery Box Challenge Winner is … SADIE!
Sadie is safe from the Elimination Challenge – a chocolate dessert. During the bake time Kyle burns his tart and starts to panic. Che helps him focus and quickly make a new one. The judges are impressed with the young cooks willingness to help each other even though it is a competition. Sixty minutes end and it is time to taste.
Creative Thomas made a dessert imposter – a Brownie that looks like a piece of steak. Sadly, it is very underdone and has way too much chocolate inside. Aarón says, “I like your idea better than the dish itself.” ☹
Talulah’s Chocolate Macarons have nice feet and taste nice and chewy. Gordon is impressed. He says, “The chocolate flavor really comes through in the macaron and the filling. Outstanding. “ 😊
Aaron’s German Chocolate Cake is overbaked and the frosting is too sweet. Christina says, “This is not an easy cake to pull off in just an hour. And the coconut is delicious. But the cake is dry and the frosting is unbalanced. I want to remind you to taste as you go along. Taste is everything.” ☹
Che’s Dark Chocolate Mousse is just perfect. Aarón loves the texture and rich taste. “Mousse can be tricky to pull off, but you took the risk and this is a big success. Nice job, my man!” 😊
Ivy’s Chocolate Cream Puff tastes amazing, but is underfilled with chocolate cream. Gordon says, “Ivy, this is a very tasty dessert, but I want more more more chocolate inside! Give me more!” ☹
Rhashad’s Chocolate Filled Madeleines are buttery and light. Aarón and Christina disagree on the filling. Aarón can’t taste enough chocolate, but Christina thinks it is perfect for the delicate butter cookie. 😊 ☹
Jaala nailed her Milk Chocolate Panna Cotta. Christina says, “Jaala, your dessert has just the right amount of milk chocolate and the taste is divine. You can bake, girl!” 😊
Jayden’s Layered Chocolate Cake has nice clean layers and a yummy taste. Chef Aarón detects a bit of spice in the chocolate and loves it. “You took a big risk timewise, but you made it happen. The cake is perfectly baked and the frosting is rich and creamy. I think you can go all the way in this competition!”
Kyle’s Chocolate Tart has some problems. It is overbaked and cracked on top. Gordon says, “I’m sorry lad, but this dessert is not top 12 worthy. It tastes better than it looks, but still, is it good enough to keep you in the competition?”
Reid, Evie & Malia all happened to make chocolate coconut cookies. They are surprisingly similar and the judges are not too impressed either way. The cookies are just okay.
CHE, JAALA and JAYDEN are the top 3 chocolate bakers. Kyle, Aaron and Thomas are the bottom 3. And the one going home is … Thomas.☹His friends surround him with hugs and well wishes. They tell him they will miss him so much. And he predicts Jayden will be one of the joint MasterChef Jr Champions. Aarón hands him a beautiful wooden Molinillo, a Mexican kitchen tool for mixing chocolate. Thomas says he will be making hot chocolate for his family as soon as he gets home. 😊
Now there are 12.
Team Aarón – 4. Team Christina – 4 Team Gordon – 4.
Episode 10
The top 12 have to break apart a rack of ribs for the Skills Test. The judges announce that only the top 4 will be safe in this test. The young home cooks work carefully with their sharp knives and do the best they can. Everyone does very well and the Gordon says they had a hard time picking the best work. But in the end, EVIE & CHE are the top 2, and Talulah and Kyle are the next best two. They are also safe.
The remaining 8 face a Replication Challenge and have to make Gordon’s Ribs & Rice. They watch carefully as he demonstrates the necessary techniques and then it’s game on.
During the cook time Ivy drops her entire plate of ribs!!! Uncharacteristically flustered, she starts to cry (Commercial Break)but Jayden has extra ribs and gives them to her. 😊(Gordon thinks Jayden may have just given Ivy a $100,000 prize, but Christina and Aarón think it was kind and good sportsmanship to help his friend.)
Alas, Ivy’s second batch of pork has problems too. Christina says “Oh, Ivy! Your pork is burned on the outside and dry inside. I know this has been a rough challenge for you. I want you to know that your rice is delightful. Sadly, this has been the weakest dish I have seen from you. I’m sorry young lady.” ☹
The cook on Rhashad’s ribs is cooked spot on and he nailed the exotic spices. Chef Aarón says, “This shows that you are an amazing chef and I was 100% correct handing you an apron.” 😊
Reid nailed the cook on his meat, but the taste is just ok. Gordon says, “It lacks seasoning! I’m disappointed, because you are the meat guy. On the other hand, you seasoned the rice perfectly. It’s extra spicy and terrific.”
Jaala’s meat tastes amazing, but the rice is sticky. Christina says, “If the rice was cooked just a bit more it might have been THE dish of the night.”
Malia’s ribs are way overcooked. Gordon says, “Oh, Malia, the ribs are so overcooked they have lost all their juicy flavor. Not even not even your amazing spice rub or tasty rice can save it!” ☹
The plating on Sadie’s dish is rushed but she nailed the taste of everything. Gordon says, “Let’s get one thing right, the pork is beautifully cooked. Tastes Amazing. And your rice is to die for. But the look of this dish is atrocious. You need to work on your presentation. As everyone gets better, poor plating is something that can send you home my dear.”
Jayden’s pork ribs are cooked beautifully. They are juicy and delicious. And his rice is the best of the night. Chef Aarón says, “Jayden! Wow! Just wow! Are you sure you are 12 years old? This dish looks and tastes like a pro chef made it! Amazing job, mijo!”
And sadly, Aaron’s pork is very undercooked. This means the judges can only taste a bit of the side. And that does not taste too good. Christina says, “Aaron, I am trying to find something nice to say here but the pork is almost raw and rice is very underdone. I’m sorry buddy. Tonight was not your night.”
Chef Aarón is happy to announce that JAYDEN & RHASHAD are the top 2. Aaron, Malia, & Ivy’s dishes have left them at the bottom. And the next young home cook going home is … Malia! ☹
She gets lots of loving hugs walking out. Gordon calls her back to give her a free table in any of his restaurants in California and she is overjoyed. 😊
Then the judges shock everyone by saying they are going to send one more cook home!!!!! And that cook is Aaron! ☹ He tears up and all the kids give him a big group hug. Knowing how much he loves to bake, Christina gives Aaron a new stand mixer before he quickly exits with a smile. 😊
Now the Top 10 remain.
Team Aarón – 4. Team Christina – 3. Team Gordon – 3.

Episode 11
The top 10 arrive at Venice Beach for the Food Truck Challenge. They will make a Classic Burger and Fish & Chips. Evie is the Blue Team Captain. She picks Rhashad, Talulah, Sadie & Reid. Che is the Red Team Captain. He picks Jayden, Ivy, Kyle & Jaala.
On the Red Team Kyle’s fries are coming out very soggy, but Che realizes the oil needs to be hotter and the fries crisp up. Jaala forgets to sear the fish before putting it on the grill and it falls through. Che encourages her to start over and in the end the team works together to end well.
On the Blue Team Sadie puts up raw burgers three times in a row!!! And Gordon flips out, “Have you all given up?!” Evie assures him they have not. He says, “Step it up please. I don’t one guest spending the night in hospital!” Reid quickly cooks 3 new burgers and Rhashad and Talulah help with fast plating.
When all is said and done the judges reveal the winning team is … RED TEAM!!! Back in the MasterChef Kitchen the judges save Talulah, Reid and Rhashad, leaving Evie and Sadie to cook a Coconut Cake in a one on one Elimination Challenge.
During the bake time Sadie’s cake falls apart when she removes it from the cake tin. She remains calm and hastily puts it back toghter with frosting. “Fingers crossed!” she says. Time is up .
Sadie’s Coconut Cake is a bit of a mess. Christina says, “This is not your best work Sadie, but you and I know it is all about the taste.” Sadie nods in agreement. “Sadie … It’s delicious! The sponge is nice and fluffy and the layers of coconut cream are so smart. You added just the right amount of coconut. I hope it is enough to save you? We will see.”
Evie’s Coconut Cake is tall and even and looks amazing. But, when Gordon takes a bite he looks perplexed. He gives a bite to Evie and asks her what she thinks. Evie is surprised by the crunch in her cake. Too much toasted coconut over takes the delicate sponge. Gordon says “Oh Evie, when you bake with sweetened coconut you have to be very careful not to overdo it. It has overwhelmed your dessert adding too much texture and too much sweet. It’s a shame really.”
And the one who is going home is … Evie ☹
Sadie is safe and even though she is happy to be staying she is so sad to see Evie go. Evie says congratulations to Sadie and Sadie gives her a whopping tearful hug. Evie gets hugs from the judges and all her friends. Christina gives her an autographed Milk Bar Cookbook, a gift certificate for a life time supply of Corn Cookies and asks her to promise she will continue baking. Evie says, “Of course. It is my favorite thing to do! Thanks so much everybody! This has been a real blast!” 😊
Now there are only 9 left.
Team Aarón – 4. Team Christina – 2. Team Gordon – 3.
Episode 12
For the next Mystery Box Challenge the home cooks find something very familiar under the boxes. Peanut Butter and Jelly! The top 9 have to make a PB & J Dish that is not a sandwich. Gordon says, “Let your imaginations go wild!”
The first best dish belongs to Jaala. Her turnovers are nicely baked and are extremely flaky, but they do lack jelly. Christina says, “If your turnovers had a bit more grape jelly inside this would be an A+ dish.”
The next dish belongs to Kyle. He made a PB&J Tart. “I know it’s risky, but I want to redeem myself from my last disaster!” And he nailed it. The crust is golden brown and flakey and the peanut butter and jelly flavors are the star of the dessert. Gordon says, “Let’s get one thing right young man, this dish proves you are a great student because you have learned from your mistakes. Nicely done.” High five!
And the last dish belongs to Sadie. She made her grandmother’s favorite Peanut Butter and Apricot Jelly Cookies. Aarón says, “I’ve never seen this cookie before, it looks classic but tastes so modern. The cookie is well baked, but I think there is a bit too much peanut butter, it overpowers the apricot. But, overall, nice job.”
And the winner is … KYLE!! He is safe from elimination and gets to pick the teams for the Mexican Food Platter Tag Team Challenge. In this pressure cooker of a challenge the young home cooks will have to create homemade Chips & Salsa, Spot Prawns, Lamb Taquitos, Red Snapper Tacos, Chicken Lollipops and Churros. Woah!
Kyle sets the teams in pairs that he thinks will be able to work well together: Jayden & Ivy, Sadie & Rhashad, Che & Jaala, and Reid & Talulah.
But things don’t always go as planned. During the cook time Reid and Talulah struggle as a team and argue over just about everything. Christina says, “I worry about food coming out of that angry station.” Over at another station, Jaala gets flustered by the rush of preparing so many different foods, but Che keeps motivating her with calm support. Jayden and Ivy work well together and switch back and forth with ease. And though Rhashad and Sadie have a very rocky start, they eventually pull it together and get everything on the platter. Time is up! Hands in the air!
Ivy & Jayden’s platter looks amazing! The chips are cooked well and Jayden’s Texas Style Salsa is excellent. He also nailed the cook on the chicken and lamb items. Ivy did well on the prawns and the snapper and the homemade taco shells. They both did amazing with the churros. Aarón says, “You two worked like a dream together. This platter is something very special. Not a single miss. This kind of cooking tells me you are both prepared to go all they way!” 😊
Reid and Talulah’s platter is a mess. The chicken is undercooked and lamb is all but raw. Reid’s chips are soggy and his salsa is watery. And the prawns are way overcooked. But Talulah did well on the tacos and the churros actually taste okay. Gordon says, “Oh dear, Oh dear. This is far below my expectations for you at this stage in the competition. You two never got on the same page with this challenge and this platter shows it. Someone is going home tonight. I’m worried for you.”
Che and Jaala’s platter is great. Jaala nailed the tacos and lamb taquitos and Che’s churros are restaurant quality. The chicken is nicely seasoned and cooked beautifully, the skin is especially crispy. Christina says, “I love the salsa you created together, the flavors are popping! You two showed that when you work together and support each other good things can happen!” She also praises Che for helping Jaala through her moments of doubt, that’s what a being a true friend is all about.
And finally, Rhashad and Sadie’s platter is adequate. The chicken lollipop is a tad overcooked but Rhashad’s spices save it. He also made the best lamb of the night. Sadie exceled on the churros, her pastry was light and fluffy and her chocolate dipping sauce was just as Aarón likes it. “I get that hit of red pepper in the background and it adds just the hint of heat I like in my desserts. I guess overall your platter proves it’s not how you start it’s how you finish. Nice job you two.”
JAYDEN & IVY, CHE & JAALA AND RHASHAD & SADIE all did so well they all won the Team Challenge! That leaves Reid & Talulah’s platter on the bottom. Since Talulah’s items were a bit better the judges decide she is will be saved, which sadly means Reid is going home. ☹
Reid hugs Talulah and says he is sorry for yelling at her. “I guess today was just not my day.” Talulah says she is sorry too. Everyone give him a group hug and Gordon brings him a special grill set. “You have done an amazing job here Reid. I have never seen an eight year old who can work the grill as well as you. You have a truly bright future!” Reid says, “I’ll be sure to use this with my grilling when I get home!” 😊
Now there are 8.
Team Aarón – 4. Team Christina – 2. Team Gordon – 2.

Episode 13
The final 8 home cooks arrive in the MasterChef Kitchen to find a great big surprise. Previous Master Jr winners Evan & Ariana from My Season 6 and Mason & Devlyn from My Season 7 have come to announce the next Team Challenge. Two teams of four will go head to head to make the winners’ favorite dishes: Mason’s Spicy Street Taco; Ariana’s Goat Chop; Evan’s Double Cut Pork Chop; and Devlyn’s Blackened Salmon.
The kids are randomly put into two teams. On the Blue Team Jayden, Talulah, Che & Ivy will go up against Red Team’s Kyle, Sadie, Jaala & Rhashad. Jayden and Kyle will cook Mason’s Taco, Talulah and Sadie will cook Ariana’s Goat, Che and Jaala will cook Evan’s Double Pork Chop, and Ivy and Rhashad will make Devlyn’s Salmon. The former winners coach the young home cooks throughout the cooking time and help them come up with the best possible dishes. In the end they help the judges pick the winning dishes.
First up Evan’s Pork Chop. Che’s pork has nice grill marks and the cook is spot on. Evan loves that the chop is nice and juicy, but Gordon says the chop lacks seasoning. Evan disagrees with the Chef and argues the seasoning is just the right on the white meat.
Jaala’s pork dish is also cooked nicely and tastes good, but the top is too crisp. Evan says, “If the top was not overcooked it might have been my favorite of the night.” The judges agree the best pork chop belongs to … CHE! One point for the Blue Team!
Next up the Ariana’s Goat Chops. Talulah’s goat is a tad under done but Ariana was excited about the use of spices.
The cook on Sadie’s goat is a bit over, but the taste is great. Ariana says her sauce is one of the best she ever tasted. She is thrilled when the judges announce the best goat chop belongs to … SADIE! One point for the Red Team!
Next Up is Mason’s Taco. Jayden’s taco looks amazing. The wagyu beef is perfectly cooked and the coleslaw and crema seasoned well. Mason is impressed, “Wow! Jayden, just wow! You nailed the cook on the wagyu and your spicing is spectacular. You really lifted an already amazing beef. Honestly, this taco is just as good as my tacos, if not better!
On the other hand, Kyle’s taco is a bit of a disaster. The tortilla is soggy, the beef is overcooked and the topping is everywhere. Kyle starts to cry and Mason says, “It’s okay buddy. You just had a bad day and what I have learned is that it is the bad days that make you into a better chef.” Today the best taco was made by … JAYDEN! Now Blue Team has 2 points!
Last up is Devlyn’s Blackened Salmon. Ivy’s salmon skin is beautifully crispy and the cook on the fish is a dream. The fish tastes wonderful but the coating is a bit too spicy. Devlyn says, “You know Ivy, the fish is amazing and I love the taste, but when you over spice something like fish it overpowers the palate. All and all, though, great job.”
Rhashad nailed the skin and fish but it’s not blackened enough and that’s what makes the dish stand out. Devlyn says, “ Oh Rhashad, you nailed everything on this plate, but without that amazing blackening on the salmon it’s just not completely right. I’m sorry buddy.” The best salmon dish belongs to … IVY. 3 Points Blue Team!
After saying goodbye to the amazing guest chefs the Red Team goes directly into a Pressure Test. They have to make Profiteroles.
Kyle’s pastry is light and fluffy. His vanilla cream filling and the chocolate frosting on top is delicious. Christina says, “Kyle, they are amazing. I knew you can cook and know I know you can bake!”
Sadie’s puffs look great, but they are undercooked inside. The cream filling was too loose and the chocolate frosting on top too thin. Christina says, “It’s sad, because they look so good. I’m sorry to say your profiteroles are a big letdown.”
Rhashad ‘s cream puffs are not uniform and they look a little bit lopsided, however they taste great. Aarón says, “The cream inside utterly scrumptious. I need to have another one!”
And finally, Jaala’s profiteroles are problematic. The pastry is very flat and the cream is gloppy inside. Although the taste is of the pastry and cream is okay, the milk chocolate glaze is too thick and too sweet. Gordon says, “These little desserts might be okay for extras at home, but they are not good enough for MasterChef Kitchen. But you knew that. Next time you will do better.”
The best profiteroles belong to … KYLE!! Rhashad and Jaala are also safe and that means Sadie is going home. ☹
Tearful Sadie gets lots of hugs when she gets the bad news. Gordon says, “Young lady, head held high please. You are an amazing young cook. I have no doubt we will be seeing more from you in the coming years. I want you to take these professional knives home with you and keep working on your cooking skills!” Sadie wipes her eyes, thanks all the judges and says this has been the best thing she has ever done.
Now, only 7 remain.
Team Aarón – 4. Team Christina – 2. Team Gordon – just 1 left!!!!

Episode 14
The top 7 young home cooks enter the Master Chef Kitchen to find whole tuna under the Mystery Box. They have to break it down and make a restaurant quality dish that shines a light on this beautiful protein. Kyle is immediately flustered because tuna is not his favorite food. In fact, he hates it. He struggles so mightily with the prep and cook he gets absolutely nothing on his plate!!! A Master Chef Jr first that baffles the judges. Gordon wrings his hands in worry, “Oh dear. Oh dear. Oh dear.” No one will be tasting Kyle’s plate in this round.
The first best dish belongs to Che. He made Tuna Filet. The fish is nicely seasoned and cooked well. Christina goes for a second bite and says, “This tuna is melt in mouth good, Che! You are an inventive chef and I believe you are going places.”
The next best dish is Ivy’s Tuna Tacos. The fish is nicely cooked and the tacos are utterly amazing. The grilled tortilla, the hand smashed avocado, the spicy Pico de Gallo are all spot on. But Aarón says, “Ivy, these are such good tacos. I could eat them all day. But it’s a tuna challenge not a taco challenge and at the end of the day I’m not sure you made tuna the star here.”
And the third best dish belongs to Jaala. Her Tuna & Rice dish is a pleasant surprise for the judges. Gordon says, “You nailed the cook on this fish young lady, and your seasoning is spot on. Unfortunately, the rice is a bit under done. It’s too sticky for my taste. Overall though, good job.”
The winner of the Mystery Box Challenge is … CHE!!! He is safe and gets to pick one kid to go in the top 6 with him. He chooses Kyle. “I know he had a rough time with tuna challenge and is a bit shaken up. I’ll bring him to the top 6 with me because I know he is a good cook and I don’t want one bad day to ruin everything for him. And, he’s my friend.”
The 5 remaining cooks are sent straight to the pantry to gather anything they like. Christina says, “This Elimination Challenge will only be limited by your imagination. Make whatever you want to make. And make it taste good. You’ve got 60 minutes, starting … NOW!”
Jayden’s Kalbi Short Ribs with Rice is nice and juicy inside. His spices are expert and his creative friend rice is to die for. Chef Aarón says, “I can tell you one thing young man, you are not going home tonight.”
Talulah’s Fancy Pork Loin is cooked well and tastes fine, but it lacks seasoning. And unfortunately, her apple puree is broken! Aarón is very disappointed with such a lack luster dish for top 7. He says, “This kind of dish is okay for top 24, but at this point in the competition I don’t know if it’s good enough to keep you in the kitchen.”
Jaala’s Halibut is perfectly perfect. The flavor is amazing and this time she nailed the rice. Gordon says, “Redemption Jaala. You have proven you can cook a fish & rice dish to perfection. I have to admit that your cook on this fish is one of the best I’ve ever seen or tasted. How can a 10 year old do it? I don’t know.”
Ivy’s Hanger Steak is cooked nicely. It is pink inside and oh so tender. Christina is impressed by the bold steak sauce and Aarón says, “Mouthwatering meal. This dish is Masterchef Jr Finale worthy!
And lastly, Rhashad’s Sea Bass. His fish has a lovely cook, but lemon sauce is too loose and runny. The overall taste is still amazing but Gordon wonders if it is good enough to compete with the other dishes. “I wish you left the sauce off because the rest of the dish is amazing. It would be a shame if you left now.”
JAYDEN, JAALA and IVY have the top 3 dishes this time, which leaves Rhashad and Talulah’s dishes at the bottom. The judges have to have another talk to figure out which cook will stay and which cook will go home. Eventually they decided that the cook making it to the top 6 is RHASHAD.
Chef Aarón says, “Sadly, Talulah, that means you are going home. But, I have loved having you on my team! I hope you know what an amazing cook you are becoming. We have been so impressed with your calm, confident cooking style in this kitchen. Before you go, I would like to give you one of my favorite French Cookbooks to take home with you as you continue on your cooking journey.”
Talulah accepts the book and hugs with a smile. She promises she will keep on cooking and learning new techniques. Rhashad tells her he will miss her very much.
The Top 6 remain.
Teams Aarón – 3. Team Christina – 2. Team Gordon – 1.

Episode 15
The top 6 arrive at a high class restaurant for the Classic Restaurant Takeover. The teams selected by the judges are Kyle, Rhashad & Jaala on the Blue Team and Jayden, Ivy & Che on the Red Team. Gordon explains to them that during this stressful challenge they will all take turns as the team captain! He demonstrates the prep and cooking of Scallops & Spot Prawns for the Appetizer and Steak & Pork Chop for the Entrée. The six home cooks take lots of notes hoping they will be able to remember everything needed to make the dishes great.
On the Red Team Rhashad is having trouble with the Spot Prawns but Kyle helps him with the grilling technique. Then Jaala burns a whole pan of scallops. Kyle rushes to the refrigerator to get more and helps Jaala get them going again. This time they come out perfectly.
On The Blue Team Che overcooks the scallops but Ivy steps in to help and the second round come out perfectly seared and tender. Ivy also nailed the cook on the spot prawns and Gordon is impressed. Jayden works hard to get the appetizers plated well and the first half of the challenge seems like a success.
For the Entrée round Jaala burns a lot of the pork on the Red Team. Both Kyle & Rhashad jump in and cook new portions in time. Christina is worried they will neglect the beef dishes, but they stay focused and do amazing well serving up medium rare steaks that taste top of the line. On the Blue Team Ivy is having a bit of trouble with undercooked pork and Jayden steps in and helps her get them back in the pan and appropriately cooked. Jayden also does extremely well with the prep and cook of the beef. Pressed for time he manages to cook 4 filets at once, each cooked perfectly to order!
On the Red Team Jaala excels as the Team Captain. She is calm and pays close attention to the plating during the appetizer round, catching plates that have too few spot prawns and undercooked scallops. On the Red Team both Jayden & Che do super amazing jobs as captain, while Ivy gets a little flustered by the fast paced kitchen and needs a little extra support from her friends.
Both teams end well and all the guests love the dishes. The judges agree this will a tough call. All the young cooks worked hard and did their best. All six had high points and low points. The judges read the diners comments and talk over the taste and presentation of the dishes, the ability to work together in the kitchen, the leadership and willingness to keep going even when things were going wrong. They make their choice.
And the winning team is … THE BLUE TEAM! Jayden, Ivy & Che are safe. Kyle, Jaala &Rhashad are going to the dreaded Pressure Test.
What? They have to make a perfect box of White Chocolate Eclairs. Christina explains they must be uniform in size. He pastry must be light and airy. The cream must be rich and delicious. The glaze must be smooth as silk. The decoration creative. And they only have 60 minutes to get it done. And the baking begins right … NOW!
The eggs are cracking and the flour is flying as the young bakers rush to create the perfect Pâte à Choux. The pastry cream is whipped up and stuffed in piping bags and pumped into almost cool pastry. Before you know it the young bakers are running to the front with boxes filled with eclairs and the final judging begins.
Kyle’s box in simply amazing. He nailed the bake on the dough and filled them with the right amount of white chocolate pastry cream. The finishing glaze is as shiny as glass. And they taste divine. Christina says, “My, my, my. You can bake with the best of them young man. Stupendous eclairs. Awesome!”
Jaala’s eclairs look wonderful. Her finishing glaze has beautiful dark and white chocolate lines as if they just came from a professional pastry shop. The choux puffed up well and has lots of room inside for her delicious pastry cream, but they just aren’t filled enough. Gordon asks, “What happened my dear? Did you run out

of cream? Because these eclairs are perfect in every way but one, not enough filling. It’s a shame.”
And sadly for Rhashad his eclairs just didn’t work. When Aarón cut into the pastry the dough was still raw. The white chocolate did not fully melt into the pastry cream and it tasted unfinished as well. And the eclairs themselves were different shapes and sizes.
And the one going home is … Rhashad. Aarón says, “I’m glad to see you are still smiling my friend. Eclairs may not be your favorite thing to bake, but you have made some amazing dishes during this competition. Your attitude and your creativity inspire me. I love watching you cook and I want to invite you to come cook with me in one of my restaurants when you get a break from school. We can teach each other!” Rhashad says he would love to do that. He has learned so much in the MasterChef Kitchen and looks forward to learning even more. He wishes the rest of the kids best of luck and everyone shares one big group hug. There are some tears, but mostly smiles.
FIVE cooks remain.
Teams Aarón – 2. Team Christina – 2. Team Gordon – 1.

Episode 16
For the First Technical Challenge in the Semi Finals the top 5 will make as many perfectly seared scallops as they can in ten minutes. The young home cook who makes the most wins the first of four spots in the Finale! Gordon demonstrates how to cook the seafood properly. “DO NOT, I repeat, Do Not put the scallops in the pan unless it is piping hot! Season one side and as they go in the pan, season the second side in the round! The first scallop goes in at 12 o’clock, then 1 o’clock, 2 o’clock and so on. And you should hear it sizzle! By the time you get back up to 12 o’clock time to flip them over. And then their done. Out of the pan and on a plate.”
Jaala gets 6 cooked properly, Kyle gets 8, Ivy gets 9, Jayden gets 11 and Che gets all 12. With the most perfectly cooked scallops CHE wins the first spot in the finale.
The remaining 4 home cooks will continue cooking with either beef, lamb, chicken or pork. Che gets to choose which protein will go to each cook. He gives lamb to Jayden, steak to Kyle, chicken to Jaala and pork to Ivy. The pressure is on these four to get their meat cooked just right and they don’t hesitate to get started. 30 minutes later it is time for the judges to taste and choose the best 3 dishes.
Jayden’s Crusted Lamb Lollipops look freaking amazing and the lamb is cooked beautifully. The taste is so good and the mustard and Panko makes it taste even better. The meat melts in your mouth. Aarón says, “Based on how great this bite of lamb is, you have one foot firmly in the finale.”
Kyle’s Filet Mignon is cooked very nicely. He nailed the seasoning and the taste is nice and juicy, but unfortunately his sauce is too spicy. Gordon says, “This is a good job young man, but I’m asking myself whether it is good enough to get you into the finale?
Ivy’s Pan Fried Pork Chop is text book. The sear and the seasoning are as good as any professional chef could manage and the pork is tender and juicy inside. Christina is shaking her head in amazement and Gordon says, “It is so good. I think it is even better than I can do. Brava.”
And Jaala’s Tarragon Chicken Breast is boldly flavored, but a tad undercooked. Christina says, “I love the addition of the herb. It is a classic combo with chicken and really elevates your dish. Unfortunately, the breast is still pink in the middle, but the part on the edge I can test tastes wonderful. I commend you for that and I wish the chicken had stayed in the pan a few minutes more.”
The 2nd young home cook in the Finale is JAYDEN!!
The next one in the Finale is … IVY!!
And the last one in the Finale is ……….. KYLE!!
That’s means Jaala is going home. ☹ She is sad to be leaving the competition. Christina says, “I know it has to be hard to have gotten this close to the finale and be going home, but you hold your head high girl. You can cook so much better than I ever dreamed of cooking at your age. You have an amazing future in the culinary world if you want it. Before you go I would like to give you 3 things I hope will keep you cooking and baking. My first Milk Bar apron, this Chef Hat autographed by Aaron & Gordon, and my mom’s secret recipe for Snicker Doodles. They always cheer me up!” Jaala accepts her gifts and laughs a little. Everyone gives her a hug goodbye and all 4 remaining friends walk with her to MasterChef Kitchen doors. It’s a long good bye and a nice one.
FOUR home cooks remain.
Teams Aarón – 2 (Ivy & Jayden). Team Christina – 1 (Che). Team Gordon – 1 (Kyle).

Episode 17/18
It’s the Masterchef Jr Finale! Che, Ivy, Jayden & Kyle will create their own 3 course meal with an Appetizer, an Entrée and a Dessert. They will cook them in 3 rounds, a round for each course. In each round they will make 4 identical Plates! In the end 2 fantastic home cooks will win the grand prize.
The past contestants and the Finalists’ friends and families are there to cheer them on. Gordon, Christina & Aarón will be joined with guest judge Gerron, MasterChef 9 Winner. Here we go!
Appetizer Round
Jayden made Hawaiian Style Calamari. Aarón loves the fried coating and cook on the calamari. “It tastes amazing, so tender, not rubbery at all, and the seasoned Panko is genius. Well done my friend.” Gerron loves the sweet and sour dipping sauce. He wants the recipe. Gordon says, “First of all, the taste is here. I love it. But don’t you think this is just a little ‘Plain Jane’ for a finale?” Aarón disagrees. “Come on, Gordon! It might be a little rustic, but this is elevated seafood at its best!” They go back and forth the few more times before moving on.
Kyle made Tuna Steak. He wants to redeem himself after his Mystery Box fail in Episode 14. And he did. Kyle nails the cook on the steak. Gordon says, “It is so hard to get it right, but you did. What you didn’t do was stay in control of your seasoning. There is not enough black pepper young man.” Kyle says he only had one large steak for four plates so he did not risk a bite to taste. Gordon shares a chef secret. “If you really don’t want to take a bite of the protein, just press the back of a spoon on it and lift it up to look. If you see salt and pepper then you are fine.” Gerron likes the tip, but disagrees with Gordon about the seasoning. He thinks the tuna has just the right amount of pepper and he loves it.
Che made Pan-Seared Scallops. They are … Cooked … Beautifully. The outside is golden brown and the inside are like velvet. And the taste is amazing. Gordon says he knows pro chefs who can’t cook scallops this well. In fact, he has seen many chefs completely kill the scallops. Everyone laughs, everyone has seen Hell’s Kitchen. Aarón says, “Wow! Just wow, young man. I don’t even know if I can get 12 Scallops cooked this perfectly and plated so beautifully, in 30 minutes no less.”
And Ivy made Pan-Seared Sea Bass. Unfortunately, Gordon’s fish is a tad underdone. However, the taste and seasoning are there. Christina got a good piece of fish and she says, “It melts-in-your-mouth delicious.” And Chef Aarón loves the crispy skin. “Crispy skin is a hard thing to get right. And I love that you plated your sea bass skin side up so the skin would remain crispy. I have to remind myself that you are 11 years old. You have the technique of a seasoned chef!”
Entrée Round
Jayden made Tomahawk Steak & Lobster. When Gordon asks why he cooked 2 proteins, Jayden says, “This is the Finale, go big or go home.” The steak is perfectly charred on the outside and ruby red on the inside. It’s unbelievably good. Gerron says, “It’s juicy! It’s tender! It’s flavorful! My mind is blown. I could never had cooked this at your age!” And the lobster? Jayden nailed it. It is seasoned well and cooked to perfection. Christina loves the lobster so much and she praises him for caring for both proteins like a pro. None of the judges care there are no sides since they would have taken away from these amazing stars.
Kyle made Fried Chicken & Waffles. Sadly, the both the breading and the meat is overcooked. It tastes a bit burnt and too dry. Gordon says, “When you cook something this simple, you really need to get it right. And I’m sorry buddy, you did not get the chicken right.” Christina agrees the chicken didn’t work but she has positive things to say about the waffles. “You Maple Sauce is delicious Kyle. And your Buttermilk Waffles are light and airy. They are perfectly formed and toasty brown on the outside. They remind me of the waffles my mom would make and she made killer waffles!”
Che made Chicken Parmesan. All of the judges agree he nailed the cook on the chicken and the cheese inside is nice and gooey. His Potato Croquetas are crunchy and delicious and everything on the dish has great flavor. Christina says, “This dish really proves your talent in the kitchen. I think it is the best I have seen from you.” Gerron says he admires the dish and how Che is keeping his dad’s memory alive with a craft he loves to do. Che thanks him.
And Ivy made Multi-Spice Duck Breast. She got the cook on the duck right, but the poultry is over spiced. The judges have to scrape some off to taste the duck. Gerron says, “When you spice stuff like duck you have to be very careful, just one spice too many can overpower the whole dish.” Chef Aarón says, “Ivy, I really love your creativity and willingness to take a risk. Chefs have to be willing to try new things, and sometimes they work, and sometimes they don’t. This dish inspires me. And it shows me how much you have grown as a chef since day one.”
Dessert Round
Jayden made a Macaron Trio: Vanilla Bean, Dark Chocolate and Green Tea Macha. All 3 are baked well. Christina says she loves the deeply rich chocolate. “I could eat these all day!” And Aarón loves the Green Tea Macha Macaron. “I’ve never tasted anything quite like this before. I’m excited about the possibilities.” All 4 of the judges love the Vanilla Bean Macaron. It has nice feet, the cookie is nice and chewy and the vanilla cream filling is delectable. Aarón says, “This dessert proves you have all the right techniques to be a well-rounded chef.”
Kyle made a Passion Fruit Cheesecake. The no bake cheesecake is rich and creamy and everything Gordon would want in a cheesecake, but he can barely taste any passion fruit. Christina says, “I agree with Gordon, if you call it a Passion Fruit Cheesecake, I want to taste the fruit.” But Gerron can forgive the lack of passion fruit flavor because he is in love with the amazing White Chocolate Dome Kyle managed to lay on top of the cake. “It is so unexpected. And truthfully, it is one of the MOST interesting presentations and bite tonight.”
Che made a Mini Tart Duo: Chocolate & Vanilla. Both simple tarts have expert crusts. They are nicely browned, flaky and hold their shape – no soggy bottoms. And the cream fillings are extraordinarily good. Gordon & Christina like the chocolate best and Aarón & Gerron love the vanilla. Christina invites Che up to the table to taste a bite from both tarts and asks him what he thinks. He thinks they taste good. She says, “Good? Good? Che, these are literally THE BEST tarts I have ever tasted.
And last, but not least, Ivy made Chocolate Mousse Parfait. Her dish looks amazing, the layers are a work of art. From the bottom layer to the top, the flavors are there, the textures, the creaminess, it’s dessert heaven. But Gordon thinks it’s too sweet. Christina exclaims, “Too sweet?!? No! It’s perfectly sweet! I’m a baker, I know these things!” Gerron & Aarón finish their entire dessert and agree, it tastes good. Christina says, “The mousse is nice and smooth and dreamy. I’m amazed you would try something this challenging in the finale. So many things could go wrong, I’m not sure I would have attempted it. But I’m sure glad you did! My taste buds thank you!”
The judges confab in the dining room. They return to the kitchen and start by thanking the young chefs for 3 delicious meals. They remind them they are all very talented cooks and invite them to switch places on the big stage.
And the winners are …

JAYDEN!!! & CHE!!!

They are shocked and thrilled they won. All four friends hug one another as confetti and balloons rain down. The judges offer congratulations and present the awards. Both Che & Jayden win $100,000 and a MasterChef Jr Trophy. Runners Up Ivy & Kyle win $50,000 and MasterChef Jr Medals. Families, friends, and MasterChef Jr contestants rush the stage and everyone is happy.
In the end all the kids celebrate with each other and Jayden and Che look into the camera and say together:


My Silver Lining: How Mason & I Became Best Friends Continued

Where we last left off the story Mason and I were very close friends.
In October I sent him a package since it was his 15th birthday. In the package was a hamburger press (since he loves to make burgers), a shark themed Cape Cod magnet (with his name on it), a microwave cake (a nod to his Chopped Junior dessert basket) and some bags of delicious Cape Cod Chips. Most importantly there was a friendship bracelet which symbolizes that no matter what happens we will be friends forever. On his birthday I called him from my Grampi’s house to say Happy Birthday and he told me the bracelet was his favorite part of the gift and he is happy to have me as a friend.
On Thanksgiving I posted how thankful I was to have him as a friend and he replied he is very happy to have me as a friend too.
In December we sent each other Christmas gifts. He sent me an Emoji pancake pan, a kindness Advent Calendar, a cook ware Christmas Ornament, his mom’s homemade Apple Butter and some California fresh mandarins. (Man, were those fruits delicious! They became my new favorite fruit!) I sent him a homemade tree ornament that had messages like “BFF” and “Through Thick & Thin” on it, Chocolate Poker Chips and Harry Potter Playing Cards. We both thought it was funny that we used the same pic of us in our Friendship Bracelets for our Christmas Card.
In January he sent me his family’s year in review letter which I liked since it felt like a was a family friend too.
In March when Universal posted “Tag Your BFF” and tell them why they are your friend, I tagged Mason and said that no matter what we will always be friends. He replied by saying. “You know it Max.” When I asked him how I was always there for him, he said I was always rooting for him and was a fan that turned out to be a great friend as well. And in this same month I posted MY OWN SEASON OF MASTERCHEF JR WITH HIM IN IT. Mason said he loved it.
In May it was my 23rd Birthday. Mason posted a video telling everyone to wish me a Happy Birthday 😊. Since due to a short illness I had to postpone going to meet him in San Francisco I called a 2nd time to say hi. Mason said he was still super excited to meet me and how he loves how I always create posts about him and other kid cooks.
In June 8th, Best Friends Day, I posted how he is truly my best friend and how happy it make me to know we will be friends forever. He replied by saying I am one of the nicest people he knows😊.
Later that month I got to meet Mason and his mom in San Francisco! It was an amazing experience. We met for a nice dinner at the restaurant Nopa. When I first saw him I was super happy and got up to give him a big hug. We talked a lot about the different shows he was on and he told me that I am like a part of his family. Then Mason said something amazing about friendship. He said Real Friends will always accept you for who you are and if someone wants you to change to be friends with them they are not real friends.(Note he is just 15 years old 😊) I really like that wisdom.


After dinner we gave each other gifts. We exchanged baseball hates. I also gave him a GeoSearch hat from my Aunt Annie’s company, a keychain with his name on it, his favorite candy bar and a backup Friendship Bracelet incase the original breaks. (turns out it had broken and Mason was very grateful for the replacement!)

Mason gave me all sorts of kitchen gadgets and we played “What The Heck Is This Thing For!” This was really fun. My cousin Katie and mother both were stumped a lot. He also gave me a Kindness Coin. I was so touched I stood up and we gave each other a big hug right over the table😊. After that we went out to take some pics


While we were outside I was really happy when Mason said he supported the LGBT community. Then I got really emotional talking to him and I told him I really has happy to have him as a friend. And how before I knew him it was really hard for me to make new friends. I told him he is my best friend and he gave me a very nice hug and told me he understood and I was his friend too. Then we took lots of good pics and we gave each other a nice hug goodbye. Later Mason posted about the visit and said, “It was super great to meet you tonight, you are joy and it was great to have a meal with my best friend!”

More recently Mason posted that I am a very positive kid and I should always believe in myself. Overall our friendship remains strong and I know we will be friends forever.

MASTERCHEF JR S07 x 14 and 15

The Grand Finale, Parts 1 and 2

The amazing top 3 enter the MasterChef Kitchen all ready to cook in the Finale. Eleven-year-old Californian, Malia, twelve-year-old New Yorker, Che and eleven-year-old Georgian, Ivy are super excited to cook their hearts out as their family and friends cheer them on. Massive group hug! Kyle looks overwhelm with happy to see his friend Che. Tears of joy. He wants his New York buddy to win the whole thing. The top 3 must cook an Appetizer, an Entrée and a Dessert. Cooking times go smoothly for all three young chefs so I will just talk about the judges reactions to the dishes they created.



Malia made Miso-Marinated Black Cod with Fresh Soba Noodles, Pickled Cucumber and Soy Quail Egg. She nailed the cook on her fish. The rich egg yolk works well. Chef Gordon says the dish has saltiness and sweetness, but it needed a bit acidity to cut the richness. Chef Christina loves the dish, but wished the noodles were longer. And Chef Aarón says the dish shows great confidence and that she did a great job!


Che made Pan-seared Prawns and Cuttlefish with Calabrian Chile Butter Polenta, Lemon Vinaigrette and Parmesan Crisp. Chef Gordon says the plate is visually breathtaking and special because he cooked two of the most difficult proteins perfectly. Chef Christina loves the complexity and elements of surprise, but she wanted more seasoning in the polenta. Chef Aarón thinks the cooking of the cuttlefish is amazing and the combination of flavors are magical, but he doesn’t love the use of cheese with shellfish.


Ivy made Pan-Seared Red Snapper with Tropical Salsa, Avocado Crema and Tostones. Chef Gordon says the fish is cooked beautifully and packed with flavor but the skin is soggy. The salsa is super delicious, but it should not have been on the fish. Chef Christina says the dish is Ivy on a plate! She wanted more of crema because it tasted so good. Chef Aarón loves the tropical colors and flavors, but might have used the plantain as a crust on the fish.


Malia’s Pan-Seared Filet Mignon with Fried Shishito Peppers and Dashi Braised Daikon looks delicious. Chef Aarón says the flavor of the dish is unreal good, but sadly the steak is about ten seconds undercooked and the daikon was a miss. Chef Christina loves that the dish screams uniquely Malia but she wanted more seasoning and more sear on the filet. Chef Gordon says the dish looks spectacular and has great finesse. He thinks it is a sophisticated dish and she did a great job.


Che’s Veal Saltimbocca with Fingerling Potatoes, Spring Pea Ragout, Morels and Mushroom Jus is a visual wow. Chef Aarón is impressed with the perfect cook on the veal, prosciutto and cheese together. Chef Christina liked that the dish is both comfort and elegant and tells his story. She wanted the peas to be brighter green. Chef Gordon says the flavors are exquisite and Che did a great job with seasoning to offset the salty prosciutto. “It’s you on a plate. That’s the most exciting thing about everything that you touch – I really get to understand it’s you. Thank you.”



Ivy’s Glazed Hanger Steak with Butternut Squash Two Ways, Brussels Sprouts and Herb Purée is an ambitious because the cut of meat is unforgiving. Chef Aarón says the cook on the steak is beyond perfect and the dish is so well crafted. Chef Christina says it is a stunning dish and she loves the steak, but she wanted more acidity. Chef Gordon says it is a chef’s dream to have a protein cooked this beautifully. And the herb purée is breathtaking, so breathtaking that she didn’t need the sauce on the plate.


Chef Gordon says, “We’re two down, and let me tell you, Ivy, Che and Malia, right now, have one hand each on that trophy. Let’s see who can impress with desserts.”


Malia made Sesame Panna Cotta with Mixed Berry Coulis, Raspberry Cream and Sesame Tuile. Chef Christina is impressed that the panna cotta has just the right amount of gelatin and is luxuriously smooth. The flavor is expert. Chef Aarón loves the combination of vanilla bean and black sesame. “Really impressive.” Chef Gordon agrees Malia has nailed the dessert. “I love it! It’s like the front cover of a pastry chef’s cookbook.”


Che made Gluten Free Chocolate Olive Oil Cake with Orange Glaze, French Ricotta Cream and Pistachio Tuile. It is nice and fluffy and glistening in the center. Chef Christina could do without the tuile, but she wants this gluten free recipe. Both Chef Aarón and Chef Gordon love the cake, but they disagree on the amount of orange zest. Chef Aarón thinks it is too much, Chef Gordon thinks it is balanced well. Either way it is a great flourless cake.


Ivy made Butterscotch Pots De Crème with Caramel Sauce, Pine Nut Brittle and Whipped Crème Fraîche. Chef Gordon says the plating on the dessert is very inviting and eye-catching. He thinks it is delicious, but very sweet. Chef Christina loves the whimsy of smashing the brittle, and the creamy pudding with the crunchy texture. Chef Aarón thinks the flavors are magical, but he would have used less thyme.


After much talking and thinking the judges pick a winner and leave the MasterChef Restaurant to tell everyone who it is. First they ask the top 3 young cooks to trade places with them on center stage. Chef Gordon says it was so close. The winner of MasterChef Jr is …………. CHE!!!!!!!!!!


Che is so thrilled he drops to his knees and falls flat on his back as confetti rains down!!!


He says, “OH MY GOSH, I CAN’T BELIVE I WON IT! I WON MASTERCHEF JR! I’ve been dreaming about this for so long and I finally won! I’m so happy and excited. Cooking alongside Ivy and Malia was amazing. They’re such great home cooks, they deserve the trophy just as much as I do. I wish I could share this trophy with them. You know, cut it in 3rds or something.”


Ivy says “ I am very happy for Che. I feel like he deserves it. He puts his heart in everything he does. He’s just amazing.” Malia says, “I have grown so much in this competition. You know, even if I didn’t win MasterChef Jr, I’m just really proud of myself and I’m really proud of Che.”


Che says, “My dad got me started into cooking and now I have they the trophy, I have the title, and I have the $100,000 and it’s all because of him. If my dad could see me right now he would be so proud of me!” 😊



The Semi-Final

For the Semi-Finals the top 6 return to cook their last Mystery Box. When they lift the boxes they find letters from home! 😊 They are asked to make a dish inspired by their families. After they get all the ingredients they need in the pantry they are shocked to find their families waiting for them back at their stations!


Inspirational guests are: Reid’s dad, Tim and brother, Cade; Ivy’s mom, Timna and sister, Anavi; Aaron’s mom, Erica and sister, Akira; Che’s mom, Elizabethanne and brother, Cosmo; Malia’s dad, Chris and brother Austin; & Sadie’s mom, Rebecca and brother, Elias. They will be cheering on the young home cooks from the balcony. 😊 The judges will be tasting all six dishes and the winner of this Mystery Box gets a place in the MasterChef JR Finale!


Malia’s Salmon & Lemon Pesto with Beurre Blanc Sauce, Carrots & Turnips is on point. The salmon is nicely cooked and all the veggies make sense and the pesto is good but a touch too strong. Chef Christina says, “Gorgeous job.”


Sadie’s Poached Halibut with Squash Blossom, Goat Cheese, Spring Pea Purée and Frisée Salad looks stunning. She nail the cook on the fish and although the cheese is gooey and rich it doesn’t really make sense with the dish because goat cheese is too sharp to be served with halibut. Chef Gordon says, “However, you are a very strong twelve-year-old. Good job.”


Reid’s Fried Chicken with Mashed Potatoes, Gravy, Peas and Fried Parsley looks great. It is golden brown and crunchy on the outside and nice and juicy on the inside. The dish is spiced well but the potatoes are not as fluffy as they should be. Chef Aarón says, “You did such a great job in executing this.”


Ivy’s Veal Schnitzel with German Potato Salad and Vegetable Salad stands out. The veal is truly the star of the dish. Chef Christina loves the warm potato salad but thinks the tomatoes are a tad to large, “but, very nice job.”


Che’s Pan-Seared Red Snapper with Black Bean Purée, Polenta Croutons and Baby Squash is stunning. He nailed the cook on the fish and his polenta croutons are crisp on the outside and nice and creamy on the inside. Chef Gordon loves that the dish has harmony, the flavors go well together. “Refined beyond belief. Good job.”


And Aaron’s Ethiopian Lamb Loin with Injera, Sautéed Spinach and Yogurt Sauce is impressive, especially since he never made it before. The spices are wonderful and he nailed the cook on the lamb, but Chef Aarón feels the plate needs more starch, “but there is a real exotic feel to this dish that is really special and is a testament to your family. Really well done, Aaron.”



And the winning dish belongs to … CHE!!!


He wins his spot in the finale and he gets to hand out 1 of 5 fruits to the other kids. They are: Cherries; Mango; Pineapple; Pear; & Peach. Che says, “Everyone here is a great cook, and we’re such great friends. But I also understand that’s it’s a competition, so I’m not giving anyone a free pass in this finale.”Aaron wants pineapple but he gets Cherries.Reid wants peaches but he gets Mango.
Sadie wants cherries but she gets Pineapple.
Ivy wants cherries but she gets Pear.
Malia wants cherries but she gets Peaches




The most important sixty minutes in the competition for the remaining five fly by. Only two of the five will win spots in the finale. As Sadie says, “These odds are not in my favor.” As the end approaches, from the balcony Che says, “Not a lot of time left guys. Come on you got this.” And Gordon starts the countdown! “Ten, nine, eight, seven, six, five, four, three, two, one! Hands in the air!”


Sadie made a Pineapple Upside-Down Cake with Pineapple 3 Ways. Chef Aarón thinks the dessert shows genius. The grilled pineapple offers relief from the sweetness of the cake and rich caramel. “Good job young lady.” Chef Christina says the dish is complex and bright. It proves she can bake like a MasterChef! One note though is to add a little fatty cream to round out the sweet.


Ivy made Blue Cheese Crusted Pork Chop with Sautéed Cabbage and Caramelized Pears. Chef Gordon thinks the dish looks stunning. She nailed the cook on the pork chop, the inside is moist and glistening. The blue cheese and pear work well together. Everything on the dish fits. Chef Gordon says, “I think it’s one of the best dishes you’ve cooked ever. Great job.”


Reid made Spiced Mango Rum Cake with Passion Fruit-Mango Purée. Chef Aarón likes the sauce and the purée and loves that used the mango in three ways. Unfortunately, he think the cake is undercooked. Chef Gordon loves the cake and doesn’t think it is undercooked. He likes the combo of mango and passion fruit, the richness and tartness elevates the cake. “Really, really delicious. Well done.”



Malia made Peaches & Cream with Buttermilk Biscuits and Candied Macadamia Nuts. Chef Christina thinks this is her best looking dish, it is very elegant. Malia nailed the caramelization of the peaches and the bake of the biscuits. Chef Gordon agrees that visually “it’s got that Wow Factor. It’s an accomplished dish. It’s creative. I would have preferred a little more of the peaches. But I’m seriously impressed.”


And Aaron made Sautéed Duck with Fregula and Pickled Cherries. Chef Gordon likes that he used cherries three ways, but points out the cherries are competing with the duck as the star of the dish. And sadly, the duck is slightly undercooked. But he nailed the seasoning and the cherries. Chef Gordon says, “It’s going to be a tough call. It’s a good dish. I don’t think it’s your best, but it’s a very strong effort. Thank you.”


The next young cook in the Finale is … IVY! And the last chef in the Finale is … MALIA!


Chef Gordon says, “Aaron, Reid, Sadie, you three have been incredible. Sadie! You’re like the princess of pastry. You are a phenomenon. Reid! Eight years of age, you are super talented. Next time I see you, can we go fishing together? You can show me how to catch a proper catfish? I’m going to miss you. Aaron! You’re funny, witty, charming. You’ve got a career in anything you decide to do because you put your heart and soul into it. Right, you three mustn’t ever stop cooking.” YES, Chef! Hugs and hugs and hugs from the judges and final three. Sadie, Reid and Aaron hold their heads high and get cheers from their friends as they walk out. Reid says, “I’m disappointed I’m not in the finale. But I’m proud of what I accomplished. I stepped out of my comfort zone. I cooked my heart out and I did my best.” 😊 Sadie says, “Going home after working so hard is a little frustrating. But when I get home, I can’t wait to open up my French Bistro/Cat Café.” 😊 Aaron says “I accomplished so much! I may not have a MasterChef Trophy, but I’ve got the passion and to make my dreams come true.” 😊



The Restaurant Takeover

The top 6 learn for the last Team Challenge they will do the Restaurant Takeover of a two Michelin Star restaurant. Sadie learns she will captain the Red Team of Aaron and Malia and Reid learns he will captain the Blue Team of Che and Ivy. Reid is a little nervous because, “I’ve never been a team captain before.” And at the end of this challenge there is no Pressure Test, no second chance. At the end of this Team Challenge 2 young cooks from the losing team will be going home.

A MasterChef limo brings the top six to Mélisse where they get amazing Chef Coats and meet the Head Chef, Josiah Citrin! Chef Citrin shows the kids how to make 4 spectacular dishes: Pan-Seared Prawns with Mixed Vegetables; Pan-Seared Halibut with Mushrooms & Brown Butter Chardonnay Sauce; Filet of Beef with Porcini Mushrooms, Glazed Carrots and Charred Leak Purée; and Truffle Crusted Lamb with French Green Lentils & Artichokes. Chef Aarón says, “Guys, this dining room is fully booked with real diners. And they have no idea how old the chefs are preparing this dinner this evening. Age can no longer be an excuse.”

During the hectic appetizer cooking time the Blue Team struggles understanding the orders being read out loud by Chef Gordon. On the Red Team Aaron gets a little overwhelmed and seems to be shutting down, but Chef Aarón and Chef Gordon help to wake him up and get him back on track. Back on the Blue Team Reid accidently throws a hot spoon across the kitchen and gets burned. He tells Chef Gordon he is okay and keeps on cooking with more focus. On the Red Team Sadie lets Malia plate raw prawns for Chef Josiah!! Everyone has to work a little bit harder, but the guests seem to love the appetizers from both teams.

Now it’s time to cook the entrées. Both teams are challenged. On the Blue Team Reid forgets to oil a hot pan and the beefs sticks. Then he struggles with proper basting technique!! Reid starts to get upset when his butter burns and Che comments, “Reid seems to be getting less and less confident as the cook goes. He need to realize that he’s a skilled home cook, that’s why he’s in to 6. We need Reid right now. We can’t get into the Semi Finals without Reid.” Chef Gordon tells Reid he thought he would be a great captain since he really believes in him and he shows him how to baste the steak. Eventually Reid decides to pass the filets off to Che and concentrates on plating instead.  On the Red Team Aaron mistakenly prepares the artichokes before getting the lamb in the oven. Later he puts poorly sliced chops with more bone than meat. And Malia’s beef is not cooked. Chef Gordon says, “Put a pair of horns on that, we’ll stick it back in the field. Dear, Oh dear.”


Chef Citrin enjoyed both teams cooking and all the diners love the entrées. They are shocked to see the chefs are kids. Back in the MasterChef Kitchen the judges read comment cards. Red Team: “Filet of beef cooked perfectly.” “Sauce delicious.” “Santa Barbara Spot Prawns spectacular.” Blue Team: “Halibut prepared wonderfully.” “One of the best halibut dishes I’ve ever tasted.” “Flaky buttery well-seasoned.” “The rack of lamb perfectly cooked.” “Lentils were to die for!” Also for the first time in MasterChef history NO dishes were sent back.
And the wining team is ………… BOTH TEAMS!!!



Too Corny
Chef Aarón begins the evening with a riddle.

“What did the baby corn say to the mama corn?”
“Where’s Pop Corn?!”

Then the young home cooks are buried in cooked corn kernels! For the next Mystery Box the top 8 will make corn the star of a dish! But first, they must get cleaned up. Under the box they find all kinds of corn, and even more in the pantry. They have Black Corn, White Corn, Corn Meal, Baby Corn, Corn Flakes, Freeze Dried Corn, Fermented Corn, Heirloom Corn and much, much more!


The first best dish belongs to Che. He made Shrimp & Corn Sope with Smoked Paprika Popcorn and Pico De Gallo and he nailed it. His dish has elegance, color and freshness. Chef Christina loves he used corn in three ways and made it his own dish. Chef Aarón says, “So, Che, as a proud Mexican I can you that that right there, is spot on. This dish is so delicious I want to adopt a version of this on my own menus at my restaurants!”



The next best dish belongs to Matthew. He made Blue Corn Crusted Tuna with Corn-Roasted Pepper Salsa, Avocado & Furikake Spiced Baby Corn. Chef Gordon says, “Let’s get one thing clear, tuna, cooked beautifully. You’ve coated it in cornmeal. You’ve gone for something with corn I didn’t expect to see this evening.” The avocado works well, but the salad is too simple, needs to be elevated to match the other amazing elements on the plate.



And the last best dish belongs to Ivy. She made Corn Tamale with Corn Elote & Huitlacoche. Chef Aarón is impressed she took on such a difficult dish and succeeded. All of the elements celebrate corn. “Great job.” Chef Gordon wanted more heat but “Every time you turn that stove on, you’re getting more and more confidence. I love that. Well done. Good job.”


And the winner is … CHE! He gets to pick the four teams for the forth coming Tag Team Challenge! Che picks Aaron as partner and then pairs Reid & Ivy, Malia & Sadie, and Matthew & Jaala. They will being working together to make a platter of Tapas including Beef Empanadas, Pan Con Tomate, Shrimp with Chorizo, Cheese Croquets, Pulpo a la Parrilla (grilled octopus) and Churros.


During the frantic cook time Aaron & Che have trouble with time management but with a little coaching from Chef Christina they refocus and help keep each other on track for a strong finish. Reid & Ivy are talking to each other and prove to be strong partners from the start. But on the other side of the coin, Matthew & Jaala and Malia & Sadie struggle with communication and cooperation. These two flustered teams struggle to get it together in time to create a winning platter.



Time is up.
Che & Aaron’s Tapas Platter looks good. The shrimp is cooked perfectly and has nice heat. The croquetas are golden brown and taste delicious but a bit lopsided. The empanadas are great but could have had a bit more color on the pastry. The octopus has good grill marks and the sauce compliments well. The pan con tomate is beautifully seasoned. And the churros fried and coated in sugar well, but too short. Chef Christina says, “It’s not the most perfect tag team platter but I’m impressed by the way the two of you worked together. The effort is on this platter.”


Jaala & Matthew’s Platter reflects two cooks who struggled being on the same page. The empanadas is missing the nice sweet tomato. The shrimp are burned. The churros are a great size, but just a little too dark. The octopus is grilled well but the sauce is missing the acidity of the vinegar. The pan con tomate is delicious. And the croquetas are nice and crispy. Gordon says, “Now, nobody’s been perfect tonight. You may not have been on the same page for the first 30 minutes, but I guarantee that last 25, 30 minutes it came together as a team. Good job.”



Reid & Ivy’s platter invites with its golden brown colors. The shrimp is good, it’s textbook. The croquets are amazing, seasoned nicely with a touch of herbs. The churros are creamy, airy, great color, the y are spot on. The empanadas are a touch under seasoned but cooked very well. The Romanesco sauce is beautiful and the octopus is cooked perfectly. And the pan con tomate has great grill marks and flavor. Chef Aarón is impressed, “Overall, very strong effort. Good job.”


Malia’s & Sadie’s platter is a little sloppy. The croquets are misshaped and lack seasoning, but they taste good. The churros are over sugared. The empanadas are overstuffed and the filling is too lumpy. The octopus is dry. The shrimp is fine, much better the second time around. And finally, the tomato toast needs more seasoning. Chef Gordon says, “I’m just disappointed. What I saw wasn’t brilliant. I think you were a little bit too cocky tonight, and let’s just hope that cockiness doesn’t send you home.”


REID & IVY made the best tapas platter! Che & Aaron also did very good.


And the last team to make it into the top 6 is … Malia & Sadie.
That means Jaala & Matthew are going home. ☹
Matthew is crying ☹ and tearful Jaala kindly supports him. All the kids look very sad to see their friends go home. Matthew and Jaala group hug with the Chefs and get lots of cheers and applause from the balcony as they walk out hand and hand. “We miss you already!” 😊


Jaala says, “I’ve grown so much since I’ve been in the MasterChef Kitchen. When I first came here I was mostly a baker, but now I can cook anything. It’s not really about winning, it’s about the experience and having fun and meeting new people. So, I feel like I’ve won MasterChef Jr just by being in the top 8!”

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Matthew says, “For the 8 years I have been on this planet this has been the best time in my life! I have so memories to take with me. So kids if you ever want to be part of something follow your dream because it’s gonna happen!”

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MASTERCHEF JR S07 x E09 & 10

Pasta Race
The top 10 have to race to make the longest possible sheet of pasta. Ivy gets a free pass and heads to the balcony. The Green Team – Malia, Jaala & Reid – win and get to dump a giant bowl of pesto on Chef Aarón. The Red Team – Aaron, Sadie & Ben come in second and get to dump a giant bowl of marinara sauce on Chef Gordon. And the Yellow Team – Rhashad, Che & Matthew – came in third and get to dump cheese sauce on Chef Christina. Big mess! Green Team is safe from the next challenge. Instant clean up!
Now Aaron, Sadie, Ben, Rhashad, Che & Matthew have to bake three perfect glazed éclairs.
There is a really cute moment when the judges realize Aaron is snacking on the gold leaf at his station. :0
All six get to work on their pâte à choux, pastry cream and glazes. In the end they all do so well that the judges decide no one is going home. The Top Ten remain, the Top Ten! 😊

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Girl Power
The young home cooks return to the MasterChef Kitchen to learn the next Team Challenge will be cooking for strong female figures. Blue Team Captain wins the coin toss and chooses her entire team. She picks Malia, Reid, Che & Sadie. Red Team Captain Rhashad will lead Ben, Aaron, Jaala & Matthew. He gets to choose the protein, and he chooses the salmon. That means Ivy’s Blue Team will be cooking the lamb.



Then the special guests arrive. Some standouts are Christina Wilson the winner of Hell’s Kitchen, MasterChef Winners – Claudia Sandoval & Christine Ha, and MasterChef Jr Winners – Beni & Jasmine.


During the cook time Reid gets badly burned my the oil when he drops the lamb in the pan! It really hurts and he gets super upset. ☹ Reid says it felt like a bunch of bees and ants stung him at the same time! Gordon brings him into the pantry to cool down the burn in cold water. Gordon shows him his old scars from oil burns and Reid feels a little better. He chooses to stay in the challenge to coach the others cooking the lamb and the asparagus! At the last minute he runs in with his injured hand to help plate the dishes nicely! WOW! 😊


On the Red Team Rhashad is having problems leading his team in the proper way to cook the fish. The salmon skin is soggy and the underside is too brown! With a little support from Chef Gordon Rhashad helps his team get back on track and the food on the plates.
Red Team made Seared Salmon with Mashed Potatoes and Broccolini and the Blue Team made Rack of Lamb with Mushrooms, Risotto and Asparagus. The salmon is flavorful, but a little bit overcooked and the mash is perfect. The cook on the lamb is nailed and the risotto is amazing … and the wining team by vote is … BLUE TEAM!!!!


The Red Team heads into the dreaded Pressure Test. Chef Gordon demonstrates his famous Pan-Seared Scallop & Apple dish. During the cook time Rhashad cuts his scallops unevenly and Aaron struggles with the set on his apple jelly.
Sixty minutes is up!


Matthew’s dish looks beautiful! He nailed the sear and the cook on the scallops. Gordon loves the lemon on the dish. Everything is seasoned well and Christina agrees the dish tastes great.


Rhashad’s scallops are not uniform. He has some overcooked scallops and some perfectly cooked scallops. He nailed all the other elements on the plate, but he is concerned because the protein is the star and he didn’t get them all cooked the best


Ben seasoned the scallops too soon and they became rubbery and dry. On the positive side – the color of the scallops is great and puree and the jelly is delicious. Christina loves his creative mind, but noticed he missed some technical points in replicating Gordon’s dish.


Jaala nailed her dish even though she couldn’t taste her dish due to allergy. The scallops have lots of color and they are cooked perfectly. Her puree is nice and smooth and the whole dish is seasoned well. Aarón loves her apples the most.


Aaron’s dish is visually sloppy and it is missing the apple jelly, but he nailed the sear on the scallops. Inside they are glistening and taste delicious. Gordon wants more finesse.


JAALA made the best dish! MATTHEW also did well and is safe. And the last home cook staying in the competition is … AARON!
So sadly, tonight Rhashad and Ben are going home. ☹ Nothing stops Rhashad from smiling though. Chef Gordon says, “What an amazing journey, but tonight you fell short. Ben, you’ve been a powerhouse. Rhashad, you’ve lit this room up. Oh dear, you two dudes, come say goodbye. Give us a hug. Man.”
They get cheers and applause from their friends as they walk out. “You keep on smiling.”  “Good job!”  “You guys were amazing friends!”


Rhashad says, “I am sad to leave the MasterChef Kitchen, but I’m happy because I made it to the top 10 and I got to learn from Gordon Ramsay, Aarón Sánchez and Christina Tosi. This has been a once in a lifetime opportunity.”

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Ben says, “When I first came into this kitchen I was not as strong as I ever thought I’d become. I learned so much new skills and the judges taught me so much. The hardest thing about leaving is saying goodbye to all my great friends I’ve made, but they’ll be my friends for life. I’m going back to Morristown, NJ and I’m going to keep on cooking!”Screenshot_20190514-123926_Video Player


Kidz Bop Kitchen
The top 12 young home cooks are shocked to see the Kidz Bop Kids are in the MasterChef Kitchen! Aaron says, “Oh, my God! The Kidz Bop Kids are here. I never thought that I was gonna meet them in person. I love how they take normal songs and they sing them without the bad words in it so I can listen to songs that I like in front of my grandma.” The Kidz Bop Kids decided the contents for the next Mystery Box Challenge: kale, apple, Oreo, potato chips, broccoli, elbow macaroni, red cabbage, yams, fruit, cheese, meat and many more things. The top 12 will make a MasterChef Quality dish from their choice of the ingredients.


When time is up the judges choose three dishes that they feel elevate the ingredients and celebrate the box.  The first belongs to Jaala. She made a No Bake Cheesecake with Cookie Sandwich Crust and Strawberry-Raspberry Jam representing her dream to open a bakery called Sugar Sugar back home in Rhode Island. Chef Aarón says the piping is masterful and the cake is so delicious. “It’s wonderful. You hit on three elements that I think all great dishes should have — texture, a certain savoriness to it and then a fresh element… Overall, it’s fun, it’s inventive, and most importantly, it’s tasty.”


The next belongs to Reid. He made Cookies & Cream Panna Cotta with Strawberry Coulis to prove to the judges he is not just a grill boy. The judges love he went out of his cooking comfort zone with the dish and Chef Christina loves the texture, the creaminess and the sweetness. She says, “Wow! I could just eat that for days. …Reid, you have exceeded my wildest expectations. You just need to keep destroying any box that we put you in. Incredible job.”


And the final dish belongs to Che. He made Chicken Parmesan with Tomato Sauce, Kale and Fried Mozzarella in honor of his dad who introduced him to cooking and has since passed away. Gordon loves how the cheese inside the breast helps keep the chicken moist and potato chips used as the coating. “You have chef’s mind. You are super creative. I hope dad is watching because that is exceptional. I think that is one of the best dishes you’ve cooked so far. Well done.”


And the winner is … REID. He is safe from the Elimination Challenge and gets to pick a cook to bring in the top 10 with him. He picks his buddy Aaron and they also get to pick the ingredient for the next challenge. Something the judges ate as kids cheese (Chef Aarón), Cereal (Chef Christina) or Canned Tuna (Chef Gordon).


They pick tuna, which some of the kids, like Kyle who absolutely hates tuna, are not super happy about.


Times up and time to taste!
Malia made Tuna Roll with Vegetables, Fried Tuna and Fried Avocado. The presentation looks incredible. She nailed the cook and cut the roll well. Chef Gordon says, “It’s like it’s just come out of a Japanese Restaurant. You are really seriously multifaceted. What I can guarantee with this dish: A. You’re not going home. & B. Congratulations, because you are the first in the Top Ten.”


Kyle made Tagliatelle with Puttanesca Sauce, Tuna and Ricotta Cheese. Chef Christina says the sauce is very spicy, so it overtakes the tuna. In addition the capers, lemon zest and dry herbs, also hide the star of the dish. “But I really appreciate the effort. Thank you.”


Che made Niçoise Salad with a Tuna Cake. It’s wonderful. It has great acidity, the mustard is in check and not over spicy. Chef Aarón also loves the texture of the cake. He says, “All the elements of the salad make sense. It’s hitting really high notes on so many different levels. Great job young man.”


Sadie made Tuna Croquettes with Aioli, Frisée Salad and Fried Vegetables. The tuna is flaky and the flavors are on point and well balanced. Chef Christina says, “I think this is most elegant dish I ever seen made from a can of tuna. Very nice job.”


Matthew made Pan-Seared Tuna Cake with Southwest Salsa. Chef Gordon likes the taste of the cakes but wants more color on the outside and feels like the salsa is a touch heavy on the seasoning. Overall, a good job.


Jaala made Tuna Cakes with Bean-Corn Salad, Salsa and Chipotle Aioli. It has a nice Tex-Mex spice level and the tuna is nice and moist, but Chef Christina wants more aioli. “Otherwise, nice job.”


Ben made Thali Tuna Curry with Coconut Jasmine Rice. Chef Aarón does not find the presentation appealing and the curry a bit muddled. Fresher ingredients would have helped. But the rice is very good. “I love the fact that you went for a curry … but I don’t know if this is enough yet. Thank you, though, Ben.”


And Brielle made a Tuna Pot Pie. Sadly, the pie crust looks ripped since she had to pull it apart to put the tuna in at the end. Chef Gordon tastes it and says, “Oh dear, oh dear … Unfortunately, the rue is not there … And unfortunately, the pastry is raw there … but, what I do like is the freshness of the peas … peas and fish go well together … I don’t think this has been your strongest performance.”


MALIA made the best dish and Ben, Kyle and Brielle’s dishes are in the bottom. And the one who is safe is … Ben. That means Kyle & Brielle are going home. ☹


Gordon says, “Now, Kyle, Brielle, you two have got nothing to be upset about. You made the top twelve. Think how much stronger you’ve become. You’ve got some great friends for life, and you’ve been in the most famous kitchen in America. Just think of the bragging rights when you step into that classroom. Everyone wants to be your best mate now, well done.”  They get lots of loving from the judges and the other young cooks before they walk out. 😊


Brielle says, “I’m really sad I’m going home, but I learned a real lot in this competition. Even though I’m not in the MasterChef Jr Kitchen, I’m still going to keep cooking at home in Atlanta.”

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Kyle says, “It’s really heartbreaking to be eliminated, but out of hundreds of thousands, possibly millions of kids that have tried out, I’ve made it to the top 12. I feel like I made lifelong friends that I’m never gonna forget, including three of the best chef in the world. My MasterChef JR journey might be over, but I still plan to become a travel food blogger or open my own restaurant.”

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After this post I will be taking a short break since my birthday is coming up and I will be going on a special vacation to San Francisco. I will be doing the 2 top 10 shows at the same time. See you then!


Camp MasterChef
The top 14 young home cooks arrive in the great outdoors for their toughest Team Challenge yet. It’s MasterChef Kids Camp! They will be cooking a chicken dish for campers. Since Jaala and Malia won the Cup Cake Challenge last week they will be team captains. Red Team – Jaala chooses Aaron, Kyle, Brielle, Sadie, Che & Reid. Blue Team – Malia chooses Rhashad, Ben, Matthew, Ivy, Evie & Kate. The winning team will get their dish published in Family Circle Magazine!


Red Team works to together to plan