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June 4
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June 11


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

Recaps by Chico Alexander, GSNN

Joe Bastianich
Graham Elliot
Gordon Ramsay
Announcer Charlie Ryan
Creator Franc Roddam (based upon "MasterChef")
EP Elisabeth Murdoch
Eden Gaha
Robin Ashbrook
Gordon Ramsay
Adeline Ramage Rooney
Pat Llewellyn
Ben Adler
Packager One Potato Two Potato (an All3Media company) and Shine America
Origins Los Angeles
Web fox.com/masterchef
Airs 9p ET Mon & Tues, Fox

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Round 1: Heat 1
June 12

We have the top 18, as the competition moves to the MasterChef Kitchen, the culinary theatre of dreams. But to earn the title of MasterChef, you have to put perfection on every plate and cook every dish as if it were your last.

On a rainy day in Los Angeles, we reopen the MasterChef Kitchen for season 3 (which is now equipped with its own restaurant, winery, and lounge) and our first...


The cooks are given a three-piece set of knives from Global. That's theirs, win or lose, but now it's time for you to use them.

Inside our first Mystery Box is... duck breast, bananas, kale, rhubarb, dark rum, sweet potatoes, Chinese five-spice, and some maple syrup. Use only the ingredients in front of you and cook ONE dish in 60 minutes.

And we start with a fire. Gordon's got that handled... and now time's called. Let's identify three standouts....

- Ryan Umane: Seared Duck Breast with Bananas & Sweet Potato Puree.
- Samantha de Silva: Seared Duck Breast with Sweet Potato Rhubarb Puree.
- Scott Little: Duck Profiterole with Mashed Sweet Potato

These ... were the WORST dishes of the first challenge. And now, on the back of that, one of them is going home.

That person... ... and shut up, Ryan...

.... is SAMANTHA.

But there was one dish that stood out for all the RIGHT reasons. That dish belongs to Felix for her Chinese Five-Spice Seared Duck Breast! She earns an advantage going into....

INNOVATION TEST #1: Most Intimidating Dishes

Felix is in control of the style of food or dish, but not the theme of the challenge, "most intimidating dishes". Joe offers.. Italian risotto. Graham's dish... New England Clam Chowder. Gordon's most intimidating dish... believe it or not, his notorious Beef Wellington.

Felix's choice... risotto.

Each contestant will have 45 minutes to make a stunning risotto. Each contestant, that is... except Felix. She's going through to the next challenge.

- Monti Carlo: Her risotto doesn't look the part. It's buried in vegetables. The good: the pancetta. The bad, the garnish is better than the actual dish.
- Frank Mirando: His impresses with basil, blood orange, and pancetta
- David Martinez: He has portabello and poblano peppers in a veal stock. He nails a "dangerous game".
- Helene Leeds: She has a saffron risotto... but it is undercooked. And the scallop basket? "Goes in the garbage basket." Rice is undercooked, and the scallops are a joke.
- Christine Ha: Risotto with Scallops, Mushrooms & Garlic. Subpar.
- Ryan Umane: Mushrooms in every bite. Good technique on the rice.
- Scott Little: His risotto has fennel and onion. Texture is nice.
- Tali Clavijo: Cranberries? Cherries? Gooseberries? And that sorta sprinkly thing on the side? No way.
- Dave Mack: He incorporated morel and portobello mushrooms. That haven't been rinsed. It's gritty.

And it's Ryan and Tali vs. the Daves I Know, it looks like.

Top two... Frank and the winner of this challenge... David Martinez.

The big bad bottom three... Dave Mack, Helene, and Tali.

The WORST risotto, and the next one out... DAVE MACK. Which leaves just one David. He and Frank will control the timbre of the next challenge...

To see this episode in its entirety OR to apply to be a contestant on season 4 of MasterChef, go to fox.com/masterchef.