Tonight on FOX Masterchef returns with an all new back to back Wednesday, August 24, Season 7 episode 12 & 13 called, “5 Star Food; Hot Potato,” and we’ve got your MasterChef recap down below! On tonight’s episode in the first half of a combined episode, “Top Chef” Season 7 winner Kevin Sbraga is the guest judge and cooks alongside the remaining nine contestants as they create a dish using premium ingredients.
On the last episode, the losing contestants from the Sweet 16 Challenge in last week’s episode were faced with the Birthday Cake pressure test and had 90 minutes to bake a three-layer birthday cake. Did you watch the last episode? If you missed it, we’ve got your MasterChef recap right here for you.
On tonight’s episode per the FOX synopsis “guest judge Kevin Sbraga cooks alongside the Top Nine in the next Mystery Box Challenge, as they create an impressive dish using unique upscale ingredients. The contestants then go head-to-head in the elimination challenge, cooking with either fresh salmon or canned salmon. Then, the Top Eight face a three-part potato skill test. Find out which contestants gets eliminated.”
Don’t forget to join us for our Masterchef recap tonight at 8:00pm. While you wait for the recap, let us know how you like the seventh season of MasterChef and who are you rooting to win.
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The Top Nine were in a for a treat on tonight’s episode of “MasterChef” when their celebrity guest judge revealed their next Mystery Box Challenge.
Chef Kevin Sbraga was apparently known around the world for cooking for the refined palate. So it was in his honor and cooking style that Chef Ramsay and Christina painstakingly chose what was probably the hardest Mystery Box Challenge yet. Though it seems that some of their contestants didn’t even need to wait to see what was in the box before they gave up because they had walked into the kitchen tonight already discouraged. The Mystery Box itself carried vintage red wine, cod, as well as other complicated ingredients such as baby octopus so right away the contestants knew that they were going to be high-end meals, but surprisingly David’s heart just wasn’t in it tonight. And frankly that was unusual for him.
David had something of a reputation this season for being on the cocky side and having little too much confidence. However, tonight it was like someone flipped a switch with him because David didn’t get excited about his ingredients and he later cooked as if he was merely going through emotions. So the judges were shocked by David. They thought they he would take to this challenge as he would have before. Which meant half-cocked and desperately trying to put his own spin on things yet this new side of David was self-doubting and somehow managed to make what looked like his best dish this season. And so whatever it is that had gotten into David’s head, maybe it wasn’t such a bad thing.
Funnily, the judges ended up picking his dish first because they thought it looked the most appealing and had the best colors. So David’s nearly perfect Tandoori Black Cod with Red Quinoa and Chickpea Puree had left some of the judges naturally curious about David’s earlier behavior in the kitchen. Ramsay had said that the moodier David gets was the better he cooks and even tonight guest judge who had never seen David in the before had remarked on David’s earlier behavior yet amazing results. But Christina on the other hand, wanted answers so she just asked David why he had been upset. And David’s answer was kind of surprising.
David said that he had worked his butt off on the last challenge to cook an amazing dish and that his best work didn’t even come into the Top Three with the judges. So David was apparently frustrated because his work hadn’t been appreciated and that made him ask himself why he was still in the competition. Yet, Christina pointed to tonight’s dish and said, “this is why you’re here”. Christina wanted David to know that he was an exceptional cook and that the judges did see that though she was also clear about MasterChef being a test. She said that the judges are going to test you and push you outside of your boundaries so David in a way had to toughen up.
The next dish that was called after David was Shaun’s. Shaun had cooked Lamb Belly and Black Cod with Balsamic Reduction and Tomatoes, but it was Shaun and so of course, the dish was enjoyable and the judges again complimented the chef was continuing to raise the bar. Though it wasn’t surprising. Shaun was a favorite this season and he know how to rise to a challenge. So really it was Brandi’s dish that came out of nowhere as being part of the Top Three on tonight’s Mystery Box Challenge. Brandi was this small town girl who had never even seen some of the ingredients so the fact she was able to pull off something like Tandoori Black Cod with Octopus and Stuffed Squash Blossoms was quite a feat.
But you know, Shaun won again because he’s Shaun. So unfortunately, the advantage from winning tonight’s Mystery Box Challenge went to Shaun who can be a little Machiavellian when it comes to these types of things. Like last time when he set up a strategy that he hoped would knock out the weakest players although it genuinely screwed over some really good people and, hell, Nathan was still around. And so it appears that Shaun remember what happened last time because tonight he switched things up.
Shaun had been given the chance to pick four contestants that would cook with fresh expensive salmon and four contestants that would cook with canned salmon. So Shaun decided to give the best cooks canned salmon because he had hoped that would be a disadvantage for them and he also though some of their weaker cooks would never be able to handle fresh salmon. Cooking fresh salmon requires cutting the fish like expertly and deboning it properly instead of hacking it to pieces or forgetting to descale it so tonight’s Elimination Challenge was capable of breaking everyone all at once. However, Shaun was given the chance to save someone from cooking and so he chose to save Eric.
Shaun probably thought that Eric would have a tough time cooking fresh salmon however Eric was one of the few people that didn’t look daunted by the challenge and who knows how he would have done. Yet, the others that had to cook didn’t always rise to the challenge. Terry for instance,had managed underperformed tonight when he tried baking his canned salmon in what looked like a nice appetizer. So Terry had been told that his dish tasted dreadful and that was rare for him seeing as he usually was one of the best cooks of the night. And sadly Terry wasn’t the only one that was thrown by the canned salmon.
Tannoria had tried to be her usual talented self and all her hard work resulted in what Ramsay called the worst plating he ever seen. The dish literally looked as if it wasn’t finish and it would barely have passed muster as an appetizer. But like Terry, her dish didn’t even live up to some of her past work. So it was a disappointing night for some yet David and Brandi had managed to follow her their lead from the Mystery Box Challenge and cook two of the most outstanding dishes tonight. As well as prove that they did deserve to be in the TOP Eight.
Though the judges still needed to send someone home during the first hour of tonight’s double episode and that person was Terry.
And to be honest, Terry’s exit was heartbreaking. Terry started out as one of the strongest chefs in the kitchen and everyone had once wanted Terry to be on their team. So the fact he got sent home while some of the people that were admittedly weaker than him in the kitchen got to stay – was upsetting. Yet, tonight’s second hour should be called the Great Redeemer because the judges found a way to truly push out the weaker cooks when they told them that they weren’t going to be facing another challenge and that instead, they were going to be fighting for their position in this competition by battling it out again. Just like they did in their respective Battles for a White Apron.
So to make tonight battles particular harder to survive, the judges brought back the dreaded potato. The judges told the remaining chefs that they were all going to be cooking with potato as their main ingredient and so were reminded of what happened the last time they cooked with potato. There were a few that burnt their dishes and some that nearly went home. However, their first battle that would determine who was safe automatically all came down to French Fries. The chefs had to cook a perfect handful of French Fries and frankly even that was considered daunting.
Katie who’s running excuse has been that she’s a Fitness Trainer had dreaded cooking French Fries. She said that she would normally tell people to stay away from such foods in favor of something healthier and so she didn’t know anything about cooking French Fries nor was she all that enthused about cooking them. So her lack of her experience and slight reluctance resulted in her still cutting potatoes while everyone else was busy cooking them. And not that surprisingly her finished product did not wow the judges.
The judges though loved Brandi’s, Shaun’s, David’s, and Nathan’s fries. So those four passed the first battle while everyone else then had to face the second skill test. The second test was Mashed Potatoes and again the other four chefs had to battle it out because only two would be deemed safe and free from elimination. But it seems that Eric had lost his cool as he was cooking Mashed Potatoes so he ended up faltering during the second battle. Eric had made a dish that wasn’t good and that he knew wasn’t good yet had tried to pass it off as good when Chef Ramsay asked him for his opinion and Ramsay called “BS” on him.
So Dan and Tannoria were deemed safe from elimination after the Mashed Potatoes round saw them just slightly ahead over the other two, but that meant there was only Eric and Katie left and that their final round was going to decided who would be eliminated. Eric and Kate, in keeping with the potatoes theme, were asked to cook Gnocchi. Gnocchi was a delicate potato dumpling and it was by far the most complicated thing they could do with a potato. Yet, Eric had something of an advantage over Katie. Eric was Italian and Gnocchi was essentially an Italian dish.
But Katie believing that Eric had Gnocchi in the bag, had gotten frazzled in the kitchen. Katie thought that Eric was going to be better than her so that got into her head and made her believe that she would bound to fail although if she had simply turned her head and looked at Eric then she would have known that there was nothing to worry about seeing as he was just as frazzled. So Eric’s Italian side didn’t give him the upper hand and Katie had no reason to overcompensate yet that’s what she did. And throwing raw sage on as a garnish ended up working against her.
Kate’s dish would have been just fine without that sage and it could have easily won. Though the judges were initially split on who to choose what with the raw sage on her dish and Eric’s dish being undercooked. Which was another shocker because for all that talk about Eric’s Italian side, his nerves made him wreck what should be a staple dish. So the judges had to think long and hard on this one. And after talking it out amongst each other, the judges ended up eliminating Eric.
So that’s Terry and Eric that were eliminated on tonight’s double episode of “MasterChef” and who knows what could happen next week!