Cooking On A Budget: Master Chef Junior

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Master Chef Junior

 I watched the premiere of Master Chef Junior last evening. Also I recorded it and we (my husband and I) watched it together this evening while we were dining on Filet Mignon with wild mushrooms and demi glace, fresh green beans and baked potatoes dripping in butter. I think my dish was excellent, but these kids they really have something special. They are the chefs of tomorrow.

The following script is taken directly from Entertainment Weekly on the internet. My comments are in blue.

Oh no. Very talented children. In a STUNNING! turn for the worse, I feel more creaky and less accomplished than ever before now that I have watched a 9-year-old whip up a molten lava cake with glazed raspberries that Gordon Ramsay awarded “a 10 out of 10.” It’s Master Chef…Junior!
(I also felt intimidated and far less accomplished myself. These kids are incredibly good!)

Whippersnapper Jack, 10, turning down Joe Bastianich’s offer to partner with him on a restaurant after Joe tasted his seared crab cake with celery seed aioli (gimme gimme gimme!)
(This kid did turn Joe down, it was hilarious. Another actually did an impression for Gordon Ramsey of the patented Joe Bastianich stare.)

Sage, 13: “I don’t know who the bald one is” (re: Bastianich)
(Somehow I missed that comment will look for it when I re watch the show.)
–Gordon putting on Dara’s inflatable bow headband, which I sort of wish didn’t exist, but whatever, she’s a child. With a semi-threatening “death stare.” And an herb and cheese spaetzle with rack of lamb and mint sauce with Greek yogurt that I wanted to devour.
(These are young kids for gosh sakes and this one cooked a better rack of lamb than the chefs competing for an executive chef position in one of Gordon's restaurants on the competition show Hell's Kitchen.)
–There’s a girl named “Jewels.” That’s a highlight in itself, but also: Gordon attempted to orchestrate an onscreen romance between Jewels and “Tommy back there,” whom Gordon suggested Jewels “put on the side” like a little bit of mustard. LINE OF THE NIGHT: “Hopefully when I have a boyfriend, he won’t be mustard.”
(This witty comment again from a young kid!)
–Graham Elliot calling Troy’s sea scallop pasta with tiger shrimp “giant little nuggets of love.”

–Sarah, 9 (baker of the aforementioned lava cake), on why girls make better chefs than guys: “Even in the olden days, they were cooking and men were just sitting there, watching TV.”
(Words were never more true for back in the day. A little different today. Food television shows brought out the willingness to cook at home for many men.)
–Rambunctious tiny monster Nathan doing the splits as Graham announced “Well done, all of you!” at the end of the dessert round. I’m glad he’s not moving on; he was that annoying. (Sorry! Agh, it IS hard to mock children. I’m the monster.) Nathan does, however, threaten to come back next year. Perhaps he’ll no longer need the stepstool.
(Even adult competitors are obnoxious at times, leave the kid alone.)
–Alexander, 13, is both the oldest contestant (he’s ancient!) and seemingly the most advanced, expertly whipping up some pistachio macaroons with a vanilla bean dulce de leche filling that Graham wanted to take into the corner and “just mow down.” He looks like what a cartoon character of a young chef would be — a bit roly-poly and ruddy, with one of the sweetest faces I’ve ever seen in my long (LONG) life.
(One of the best chefs of all of the kids. But I thought he was a girl. Even one of the chefs seemed to call the name Alexandra, so I thought. At any rate a dynamo for sure.)
The Top 12: Knife-wielding ninja Roen, Molly, Jack, 12-year-old Brooklyn shyster (with major Bri glasses!) Sofia, Jewels, Dara, Troy, Tommy, Gavin, Sarah, Alexander, and Kaylen, in whose world “mint and lime go really good together.”
What do you think of the Junior format? Who’s your favorite overachieving youngster so far?

My personal favorites right now are all of these kids. But if I had to pick a finalist right now, I think Alexander definitely has some cooking chops and quite possibly could win the whole thing. Time will tell.

Did you watch the show, and who caught your attention?
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