Episode PremiereJune 27, 2011
Show Period2010 - now
Production CompanyReveille, Shine TV, One Potato Two Potato
Cast and Crew
- Gordon Ramsay as Himself - Host / Judge
- Joe Bastianich
- Graham Elliot Bowles
The 15 remaining home cooks enter the "MasterChef" kitchen and are assigned their second Mystery Box Challenge. They have 60 minutes to present an absolutely fantastic dish using only the ingredients hidden under their boxes. Judges Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot, and Joe Bastianich will then choose the three best-looking plates and taste only those three dishes. The winner will receive an advantage in the upcoming dessert-themed challenge.
The contestants lift up their boxes to reveal a rack of New Zealand lamb, peaches, cauliflower, fava beans, feta, rice, chili peppers, tarragon, creme fraiche, and piecrust. Gordon says that the Mystery Box Challenge is where we "separate the men from the boys." Joe points out that to be successful in this round, the competitors need to have "a combination of intelligence and speed. You've got to conceptualize and execute [and] not second-guess yourself."
Alejandra prepares a curried rack of lamb and peach chutney. Graham wonders if she roasted the lamb too soon, but she explains that she wants to give it time to rest so that it's juicy. In the last ten minutes, Jennifer, doubting her choices after a comment from Graham, decides to try to cook a whole rack of lamb, instead of sticking with her lollipop plan. She runs out of time and ends up with undercooked meat. When the judging begins, Gordon singles out her dish as the worst. Joe gets angry, ranting that her lamb is raw, and it would be dangerous to serve.
The first cook that the judges choose as among the best is Alejandra and her curried rack of lamb, peach chutney, rice pilaf, and cauliflower steak. Gordon remarks she that she didn't just make one stunning dish - she made four. The judges name Adrien's farmer's market lamb as the "the most restaurant-ready dish." Joe states that the food tastes like "fireworks on your palate." The final cook to make the top three is Tracy, with a sweet and salty lamb and feta. Graham calls it hers the "most beautiful plating skills we've seen."