MasterChef Junior: The Moon & The Sea

This title is not only relevant to the episode, but also my main interests in life… on to MasterChef Junior!

The Mystery Box comes with one big mystery box containing the judges in space suits.  Astronaut Tracy Dyson guests and impresses the heck out of both the children and me.  Since, as Tracy says, real astronauts know that the moon is made of cheese, the kids pull open their Mystery Boxes to see a bunch of different cheeses.  Their task is to make an out of this world cheese dish.  (Thank you, MCJ; so much better than marshmallows!)


Addison, Kaitlyn, and JJ have the top dishes.

Kaitlyn wins!  Before her advantages are announced, the judges take it back to earth for the elimination test– they wheel out a bunch of fish.  To tie to moon to the sea, Graham shows the kids how to filet a fish using the GIANT moon fish.

Kaitlyn doesn’t have to cook and also gets to pick a peer to go through to the next round with her.  She chooses Addison.  Kaitlyn also gets to act as fish monger, tossing the chosen fishes to the kids about to cook.


L to R, T to B: Avery, Jaeclyn, Derek, Vivian, Kya, Kyndall, Nate, Ian

Avery is so spunky.  Her decision making process for this dish seemed to be “my daddy likes it,” and that was just too cute.  Jaecelyn didn’t taste her fish because she doesn’t like it.  Derek is praised for having the best palate in the MCJ kitchen.  Vivian’s sauce doesn’t go with fish.  Kya is the cutest thing and my current favorite.  Kyndall’s veggies are uncooked.  Nate impresses with Asian flavors despite the fact that he’s “not really Asian.”  Too cute.  Ian’s dish goes well despite not needing the potatoes, but MAN this kid makes me nervous in the kitchen.  I’m not sure about his skills.

Nate is the winner!

Jaeclyn, Vivian, and Kyndall are called out for bottom dishes.  Jaeclyn is sent back to cook another day.  Vivian and Kyndall go home.

We’ve still got 18 kids in the kitchen and some still have a way to go to distinguish themselves.  Anyone sticking out in the pack to you?  I’m loving Kya and Sam!

HK14: 16 Chefs Go Fish

Sixteen chefs in Hell’s Kitchen are woken up to do a little Alaska-inspired fishing.  In pairs, they chefs are to search for a matching fish head and a fish tail in pools of icy water.

In this, the first part of the challenge, the men win the advantage going into the second part of it.  Each chef is to individually prepare a dish featuring the fish they retrieved.  I love seeing individual cooking skills so early in the competition!  Michael Cimarusti comes to taste and guest judge.  We’ve seen him on Top Chef Masters!

Hell's Kitchen 16 Chefs Compete

L to R, top to bottom: Brendan’s trout, T’s trout, Josh’s salmon, Mieka’s salmon, Nick’s cod, Christine’s cod, Sarah’s cod, Alison’s halibut, Milly’s halibut.

  • In the battle of the trout, it’s Brendan, Bret, Meghan, and T competing.  Bret wins the point for Blue.
  • For salmon, Josh, Michael, Monique, and Mieka face off.  Mieka wins, much to everyone’s surprise as this was her third time ever cooking salmon.
  • The battle of the cod has Randy, Nick, Christine, and Sarah facing off.  Sarah wins the point for Red.
  • Halibut is prepared by Michelle, Alison, Adam and Milly.  It’s derailed a bit since Adam has used the same rice Milly prepared.  Even if the men were the best, this point was going to Red.  It’s claimed by Michelle and the ladies win!

They get to enjoy a day surfing with Anastasia Ashley while the men contend with seafood delivery day.  In prep, Randy cuts himself and ends up taking a trip to the hospital.  He’s back for service, two stitches later.

Although the women are feeling superior going into the night’s service, the reality of it is rocky seas.  Appetizers pose problems for the girls– T burns a pizza, scallops, risotto, and even pasta seem impossible to get right.  Another screw up on their last appetizer of the evening has Chef Ramsay kicking them all out of the kitchen.  Sarah’s plea for them to try again only further enrages Gordon.

Though the men make it a bit farther, they don’t actually have a better night.  A diner finds plastic on his salad of scallops and Michael decides to dangerously hide a smoking pan.  The biggest problem for Blue, and their ultimate undoing is their meat temperatures.  So many undercooked pieces of meat at delivered that Gordon kicks them out too.

For the actual first time ever in Hell’s Kitchen, Gordon pays a visit to the chefs’ dorms out of sheer frustration.  Each team nominates two of their own for elimination.  Red nominates Christine and Mieka.  Blue nominates Michael and Nick.

Michael is ultimately sent packing by Chef Ramsay.

I think there’s definitely dead weight on both teams, but agree Michael was the most deserving of a trip home.  Who do you think is next to go?