MasterChef Junior: Meet The 12 Finalists

3 10 2013

This Friday, Oct. 4 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX, the Top 12 junior home cooks on MASTERCHEF JUNIOR compete in the season’s first mystery box challenge and must create an impressive and delicious dish using only the mystery ingredients. Later, the judges – host and award-winning chef Gordon Ramsay, restaurateur Joe Bastianich and acclaimed chef Graham Elliot – task the kids to each create an elevated, restaurant-quality burger in only 60 minutes. At the end of the episode, 10 kids will advance to the next round of competition and move one step closer to being named America’s first-ever MASTERCHEF JUNIOR and win a $100,000 prize.

Meet the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR Top 12 and find out what their favorite foods are – and why:

Junior Chef: Alexander
Age: 13
Hometown: New York, NY
Favorite Food: “A good burger” Simple, but amazing when made to perfection!”


Junior Chef: Dara
Age: 12
Hometown: Culver City, CA
Favorite Food: “Any type of meat, because it’s so versatile.”


Junior Chef: Gavin
Age: 10
Hometown: San Francisco, CA
Favorite Food: “Fruit. You can do so many things with it. You can make a puree, a compote, have it by itself, or dry it. There are endless possibilities.”

A good burger” Simple, but amazing when made to perfection!”



Junior Chef: Jack
Age: 10
Hometown: East Rockaway, NJ
Favorite Food: “Beef Wellington. It has everything that I love: prosciutto, beef and carbs.



Junior Chef: Jewels
Age: 12
Hometown: Manalapan, NJ
Favorite Food: “Cucumbers, hands down. I love the crispy and clean taste. Plus, they are very hydrating!”


Junior Chef: Kaylen
Age: 11
Hometown: Culver City, CA
Favorite Food: “Sushi! It comes in so many flavors and styles.”


Junior Chef: Molly
Age: 12
Hometown: Pasadena, CA
Favorite Food: “Any type of dumpling! You get a lot of different flavors in every bite, and you can eat a lot of them!”


Junior Chef: Roen
Age: 12
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Favorite Food: “I love sushi so much because of how fresh and cool it is. For me, it’s a food that is great in any weather, cold or warm.”


Junior Chef: Sarah
Age: 9
Hometown: Culver City, CA
Favorite Food: “Sushi, or gummy worms. I would say gummy worms, but I would need something healthy, too….and I LOVE sushi!”


Junior Chef: Sofia
Age: 12
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Favorite Food: “Sushi–because that one speaks for itself!”


Junior Chef: Tommy
Age: 11
Hometown: Palos Verdes Estates, CA
Favorite Food: “I could eat Pasta Bolognese for the rest of my life!”


Junior Chef: Troy
Age: 12
Hometown: Thousand Oaks, CA
Favorite Food: “Pasta is definitely my favorite food!”


MASTERCHEF JUNIOR is produced by Shine America and One Potato Two Potato, and is based on a format created by Franc Roddam and Shine. Shine International handles distribution for the MASTERCHEF format. Elisabeth Murdoch, Eden Gaha, Paul Franklin, Robin Ashbrook, Gordon Ramsay, Adeline Ramage Rooney, Patricia Llewellyn and Ben Adler serve as executive producers.

“Like” MASTERCHEF JUNIOR on Facebook at

Follow the series on Twitter @MasterChefJrFOX and join the discussion at #masterchefjunior.

First Look: Masterchef Junior

25 09 2013

Joe does not spare the stare! They may be small, but they are an ambitious bunch of kids. This is a shortened version of the Masterchef adults. They start out right in the Masterchef kitchen. Broken down into groups of 8, they are asked with a certain theme such as seafood, pasta or desserts. The 24 are whittled down to the top 12 by the end of the first episode.  MasterchefJuniorLogo

Their technique is impressive. With ages ranging from 8 to 13, they are making things such as a cactus salad, a pomegranate salsa, an aioli (and I still don’t know what that is!) to mention a few. They are cooking with octopus.

Their demeanor is adorable. “How am I supposed to reach these?” One young cook imitates Joe’s death stare and wants his job. Another cook wants to make a molten lava cake because, “I think it will impress you if I get it right!”

One point that continues to annoy me: It is French macaron (pronounced mack-ah-rohn), not French macaroon (and they even spelled it as macaroon, pronounced as mack-ah-roon). How do you tell the difference?


The downside of this episode are a few kids crying a bit (happy tears, stress tears, tears of leaving–whatever kind of tears they were). I think whether this show will work or not is how the kids handle the stress. Even some of the adults on Masterchef will cry, scream, and have temper tantrums, and admirably these kids are so much more well behaved than that, but something about a child crying makes us question whether we have gone too far in what is acceptable for us on television. Seeing Rachel Crow and Beatrice Miller break down on The X-Factor made us question if 13-year-olds should even be in a singing competition. The age demographic of this group is even lower. Time will tell whether this can be a successful spin-off. Tune in Friday, September 27, 2013 at 8/7 central and let me know your thoughts.

Thank you to FOX VIP and Fox Broadcasting for the privilege of the preview.