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Home cooks from all over the country have a shot to become the newest star in the culinary firmament.

Recaps by Chico Alexander, GSNN

Host/Judge Gordon Ramsay
Judge Joe Bastianich
Graham Elliot Bowles
Announcer Jason Thompson
Creator Franc Roddam (based upon "MasterChef")
EP Adeline Ramage Rooney
Elisabeth Murdoch
Gordon Ramsay
Howard T. Owens
Pat Llewellyn
Todd Nelson
Robin Ashbrook
Ben Adler
Liz Cook
Packager One Potato Two Potato
Origins Los Angeles
Web fox.com/masterchef
Airs 8p ET Mon, Fox

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Round of 9
July 19

Last night, Gordon outlined his case for raising the debt ceiling. Oh, sorry, that was the President. I keep getting those two confused.

LAST WEEK, it was all about mom. The judges' three moms - Helen Ramsay, Kate Bowles, and Lidia Bastianich - dined on the final 10's wares, leading to a Pressure Test of a different kind. Then came the ACTUAL Pressure Test, which left Giuseppe with a sour taste on the back of some bad eggs Benedict. Now nine remain, and time is running out to make a lasting impression in this... our FIFTH round..


Inside the fifth Mystery Box... bananas, scallops, arugula, avocado, eggs, cauliflower, corn on the cob, shelled peas, pancetta, a croissant, and a shot of brandy. As always, selection of the top three will be based on presentation. To the winner, another huge advantage in the next challenge.

Jennifer has won the last TWO Mystery Boxes.

One hour... ONE DISH. Top three will taste. And Ben is pairing scallops with bananas. Not relevant, but Ben won't shut up about it.

The top three this week...

- Christian Collins: Scallop Succotash with Lime & Honey Vinaigrette. This is his second final three Mystery Box.
- Adrien Nieto: Trio of Scallops with Corn, Egg, and Cauliflower Puree. This is Adrien's third final table.
- Ben Starr: Seared Scallops with Roasted Banana and Corn. This is Ben's FIRST final table.

Three of the favorites in the competition, but only one can earn that high advantage in the next challenge. The winner... of this Mystery Box... is... ADRIEN! His advantage is... Adrien will meet... a pig. Now that he's met a pig, he gets to choose which cut of the pig he will cook with, and which will be given to his opponents.

ELIMINATION TEST #5: Pork - Nose to Tail

The most difficult cuts: the cheeks and the shoulder. Adrien will pick for himself the double cut bone-in pork chops. The cheeks will go to his chief rival... Christian. The other cuts...

Ben Starr: Pork butt
Alejandra Schraeder: Boneless center cut pork loin
Derrick Prince: St. Louis style ribs
Suzy Singh: Pork belly
Jennifer Behm: Ground pork
Christine Corley: Short ribs

Right now, the judges are calling for pork cheeks, butt, and the ribs to be bottom three. The easiest cut: the loin. Crust it, broil it, you're good to go.

The dishes...

Derrick: Braised St. Louis Ribs with Sauteed Greens & Tomato Tartare (nailed it)
Christine: Dry Rub Baby Back Ribs with Potato Salad, Brussels Sprouts & Leeks. (great flavor)
Suzy: Glazed Pork Belly with Braised Cabbage, Spaetzle, and Gravy (one word for that... that we can't print. We'll just go with "revolting").
Jennifer: Ground Pork Patty with Sauerkraut (disgusting... and Joe? "This is a great example of what garbage is." Right before he files it in #13)
Ben: Pork Butt Chili with Green Chile & Red Onion Cornbread (the beans that he was frantically picking out... actually worked).
Christian: Braised Pork Cheeks over White Bean Puree with Apple Fennel Slaw (nailed it)
Adrien: Double Pork Chop with Apricot Apple Beer Sauce & Sweet Potatoes (safe)
Alejandra: Pork Loin with Apricot Wine Sauce (it's raw)

First up, respect must be paid to the top two dishes... Most difficult cuts.. Most amazing miracles. The winners of this challenge... CHRISTIAN and CHRISTINE.

Now for the bottom three... And most deservedly... SUZY, ALEJANDRA, and JENNIFER. Easy decision. And for all the right reasons.

Jennifer... is SAFE.

The person leaving MasterChef tonight....

... is ALEJANDRA. Suzy got lucky by a raw side of pork. So much for Christian's ouster.

And then... there were eight.

To see this episode in its entirety, go to fox.com/masterchef.