MasterChef Season 8 has seen some small but important changes to the show. You saw it in the try-out round when the judges picked what dish the competitors had cook. Then you saw it again in the elimination round where three of the bottom contestants battled it out to avoid elimination.
In the “America’s Grocery Bag” round, the Top 20 saw their first Mystery Box Challenge. In the boxes were shopping bags with 12 ingredients that are found in every American home. Some of the ingredients included chicken breast, ground beef, rice, carrots, white cheddar cheese, bacon broccoli and bananas. They were also allowed to use the MasterChef staple pantry box and had 60 minutes to cook up whatever they wanted using the ingredients.
When the contestants were done making their dishes, Gordon called out three cooks for being the worst, Mark, Heather and Sam. On the other end of the spectrum, Yachecia and Jennifer were praised for their wonderful dishes while Brien was picked as the winner with his fried chicken with broccoli and bacon slaw and Jo Jo fried potatoes.
During the elimination round, the bottom three had to cook again in order to stay in the game. But unlike before, they had the choice to cook a new dish, or recook the same dish, but make it better. This time, however, they only had 45 minutes to get the job done.
Mark seemed unmotivated this time around as he took his time prepping. At one point he even mouths off to Gordon has he gives Heather advice about her dish. Gordon tells him that if he doesn’t want to take the competition serious, he can take off his apron and leave. Mark decides to stay. For his first dish, he cooked caramel swirl pancakes with potato latkes, apples and bananas. All the judges said it was undercooked. This time around, Mark makes chocolate chip pancakes with baked eggs, bacon and cilantro. Although it had more flavor, both Christina and Gordon were not impressed.
Sam went with the traditional meatloaf with mashed potatoes and carrots, which was criticized for being bland and undercooked. Sam decided to stay with the same dish and take the judges advice. Even though the judges agreed that it was better this time, Gordon still felt it was a little undercooked.
Heather’s first dish was chimichurri chicken with garlic rice and carrots. Arron complained that it was too dry without sauce. For her second try, she made chimichurri chicken kabob with vinaigrette and French fries. The judges agreed that it was better and Christina even commented on its visual appeal.
Gordon warned the bottom three that no one was safe and that all three could be going home. After conferring with the other judges, Mark was the only one who was eliminated. Although Gordon said he wasn’t MasterChef experience, Mark was a sport and said he would take the experience home.
Not sure if it was based solely on the food or his attitude, but Mark seemed like he didn’t want to be there anyway. I think the judges made the right call. Tune in next Wednesday to find out if your favorite will be eliminated next.
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