MasterChef Episode Recaps

Auditions #3

Auditions #3

Aired: 5/29/13

Following an extensive nationwide search, a chosen few home cooks will be selected to prove themselves to three of the biggest names in the culinary world - Graham Elliot, Joe Bastianich and Gordon Ramsay. Those who make it will have to face some of the most intense and extreme challenges competitors on the show have ever seen. In the end, only one contestant will win $250,000, author their own cookbook and earn the title of "MasterChef."

In the final day of the auditions, the last of the home cooks arrive to pursue their dreams. The contestants have just one shot to prove that they have what it takes to win the competition. They are each given an hour to cook and five minutes to plate their dish. If two of the judges give them a vote of confidence, they'll move on to the next round.

First up is Howard, a 26-year-old U.S. Army veteran who's on a mission to earn a "MasterChef" apron. He serves a peach cobbler with bourbon and blackberries. Gordon enjoys its rustic charm but is overwhelmed by the amount of alcohol. He gives Howard a "no" vote. Graham likes the crunch of the panko crust and gives him a yes. Joe walks Howard back to the prep area and announces to all of the contestants, and to Howard's grandmother, that the young competitor will be moving forward.

The next wave of home cooks isn't as successful. The judges aren't impressed by one contender's white chocolate spaghetti with lemon cake "garlic bread." Gordon is also put off by a contestant who brings her stuffed animals to the presentation.

The very last candidate, Johnny, a 28-year-old carpenter, hopes to turn the tide. Before tasting his dish, Chef Ramsay is leery of the combination of lobster, popcorn, nuts and caramel. But when the judges sample his Lobster Crackerjacks, they are all impressed and make a unanimous decision to give him an apron. With that, Johnny rounds out the first group of competitors.

Now the remaining home cooks must fight their way into the MasterChef kitchen, where the ultimate battle awaits. The competitors follow the judges down a dark corridor to the workstations to face their first challenge.

To everyone's surprise, a flock of lambs is unleashed into the room. The contestants learn that they can use any part of the animal and all of the ingredients in the MasterChef pantry to prepare the best lamb dish of their lives in just 60 minutes.

Malcolm prepares a sampler plate to show his diversity. Beth cooks her dish on a bed of hay. Returning competitor Luca stuffs a loin with sweetbreads. Gordon believes that some of the challengers are overcomplicating things, and even though they have 15 minutes left to cook, Joe starts to take away some contestants' aprons.

As the clock winds down, the home cooks add their finishing touches. The judges divide the remaining competitors into three groups. They congratulate the first batch and welcome them to the MasterChef kitchen, then send the second pool of hopefuls home.

There are still eight challengers who remain at their stations. The judges explain that they need to sample their completed dishes before their fates can be decided.

Malcolm's lamb trio and Johnny's lamb rangoon earn them each a spot. Despite the fact that she's a vegetarian, Brie's four seasons lamb dish is prepared well enough to secure her place in the next round. The judges find it impossible to choose between the final two entrées. Ultimately, they put Beth through and finally make Luca's MasterChef dreams come true by allowing him to keep his apron as well.

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