July 25, 2012 | Posted in REALITY TV | By

Prawns, Corn and a Surprising Elimination

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And so the top six have become seven again, now that Josh is back in the kitchen. But it’s definitely sink or swim time as the Mystery Box challenge is revealed to feature…tanks of live prawns! The contestants only have 45 minutes to utilize their prawns effectively and try to spotlight this freshest of fresh ingredients.

There’s a lot of shrieking and squealing (most annoyingly from Monti, who Gordon can only watch with puzzlement as he gets splashed when she tries to get a grip on her ingredient.) But the judges do agree that all seven contestants are playing up to their strengths and utilizing the ingredient well to show off the prawns. They will only taste 3 plates, and the first one up is Becky. She’s made her prawns simply grilled with a Salsa Verde and Saffron Rice. It gets raves from the judges for taking a classic Spanish dish and putting her own unique and modern spin on it. Christine has earned her way back into the spotlight with a beautiful Spot Prawn and Pineapple Broth dish, and so, surprisingly, has David Martinez with his Spot Prawn Ceviche. He really impresses the judges by combining a cooked prawn sauce with the raw, marinated prawns…indeed, they are so impressed he ends up winning the challenge.

As the winner, David gets the advantage in the Elimination Test – although he will not be safe from it and still has to cook. He gets to choose one of three ingredients: beets, corn or bacon. The twist is everyone must prepare a dessert using that ingredient – although he will be given the chance to see three examples of desserts with that ingredient as inspiration and possible guidance. David chooses corn, and decides he is going to make a rice pudding dessert. He also gets 5 minutes in the pantry alone to collect his ingredients, but once he’s done there’s no going back to get anything he forgets to collect.

And by some mental block, he forgets the rice.

After the other cooks get to hit the pantry up for their ingredients, David asks if anyone has any rice to spare. Becky does, and she is nice enough to give him some. So much for Becky being the evil “witch” the editing keeps trying to make her out to be. Everyone seems to be having trouble with their desserts as time is running down. Felix has tried to make profiteroles and is worried they won’t cook in time. David’s dish tasted terrible when Joe sampled some and no one seems to be getting it together.

But when time runs out, the judges have to sample each dish. David is first, and the judges seem disgusted by the Corn and Rice Pudding with Salted Caramel sauce he’s prepared. They can’t believe he’s presented them such an “inedible” dessert after starting out with such an advantage. In contrast, Becky’s dessert – a pairing of Popcorn and Panna Cotta, gets raves. It’s creatively plated and everything tastes good, and she only seems to be getting stronger and stronger as the competition continues on.

Christine gets good comments on her Corn and Coconut pudding, which while it looks simple apparently has a lot of flavor and complexity which makes it a winner. Monti has completed a Corn Souffle, which Gordon gives praise to as well. Meanwhile, Felix’s Corn Profiteroles are a disaster. It doesn’t look good, it doesn’t taste good, and it may be her worst dish so far in the competition. Frank has another successful dish, this time a Corn Budino with Chocolate. Josh is last, and it’s time to see if he’s really a “Comeback Kid” or not. Sadly his Corn Creme Brulee with Corn Caramel is way too sweet and visually looks terrible. Now they have to pick the three worst dishes, but it doesn’t seem like there will be any surprises who ends up there. Felix is extremely upset as the judges discuss and is consoled by several of the other contestants. She doesn’t want to go home on this one bad dish.

Gordon, Joe and Graham announce that the two best dishes were Becky’s and Frank’s, so they will be team captains next time. Yay, Frank! (Yes, he is my favorite at the moment.) The bottom three, unsurprisingly, are David, Felix and Josh. Felix is called forward first, and while I thought that meant she would be safe, it ends up meaning that her time in the MasterChef Kitchen is done. I was pretty shocked by this, I really thought David would go home after screwing up his advantage so badly. As she leaves, she is asked who she thinks will win the competition and she says Becky. It certainly does seem as though Becky is the one to beat at this point, unless she completely screws up and falls apart some time before the final battle.

It should be interesting to see what happens in the next team competition, now that they’re down to six.

For more on Season Three of MasterChef US including polls and background information on all contestants, check out my full season hub!

MasterChef US 2012: Season 3
MasterChef has been a hit television sensation all around the world. Learn about the contestants from Season Three, which aired in the summer/fall of 2013 on the FOX Network.

sockii is just your typical Jane-of-All-Trades who never has enough time in her day for all of her projects. She has written for many websites online including Squidoo, Zujava, Yahoo! Contributors Network, HubPages and Wizzley. She has been attending and vending at science fiction and media conventions for over 15 years, and for several years ran an art gallery and jewelry store in Philadelphia. Today she is happy to be living in South Jersey with her partner David and their 6 cats. Sockii is a member of several affiliate sales programs including Amazon Associates and Viglink. Products from these services may be advertised on her posts and pages to generate sales commissions.

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