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John Torode and Gregg Wallace are looking for the country's next star chef. Those who make it through to the quarter-final must prove their knowledge and passion for food. The heats have produced four exceptional cooks, but only one of them will make it through today to become a semi-finalist. Initially named Masterchef Goes Large, the series changed it's name to Masterchef in 2008.
It is Finals Week, and just five cooks remain. They travel to Carlton Towers in rural North Yorkshire, where they must cook a lunch for some of Yorkshire's finest local producers and farmers. The special lunch is overseen by one of the UK's most impressive young chefs, Tommy Banks. Tommy has devised an exceptional five-course tasting menu for the guests at Carlton Towers using the best local produce, and with just four hours to recreate his complex and beautiful dishes, the finalists face their biggest challenge yet. The finalists then return to the MasterChef kitchen, where they must create one dish inspired by a place they love, and they have two hours to showcase all they have learned. Their one dish needs to demonstrate to judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace that they have what it takes to go the distance. Will their flair, creativity and palate be enough to save them from being sent home? Who can make it through to the final four and keep their dream alive?
Finals Week continues, and just four cooks remain. Now they travel to Lima, capital of Peru, where they face three challenges. The first takes place in Lima's major fish market Chorillos, where, in teams of two, they must recreate four popular Peruvian dishes to serve to a group of local fishermen. To help the finalists make sense of this unfamiliar cuisine, they are mentored by one of Peru's most prolific and celebrated chefs, Gaston Acurio. Next, the amateurs work with chef Virgilio Martinez at his world-renowned restaurant Central. The four contestants work during a busy lunch service and are given three hours to each cook a dish from Virgilio's 17-course tasting menu. Finally, the finalists must create a special dinner at the Lima Country Club Hotel for Gaston, Virgilio and three other leading industry figures from the Peruvian food scene. The amateur cooks must draw on their experiences of Lima to create their own Peruvian-inspired dish and impress their guests.
It is the penultimate show, and the final four amateur cooks face the challenge of a lifetime cooking alongside internationally renowned chef Ashley Palmer-Watts. Regarded as a leading culinary innovator, Ashley has worked alongside one of Britain's most famous chefs, Heston Blumenthal for the last 18 years. As head chef at the three-Michelin-starred Fat Duck in Bray, Ashley helped create some of the world's most revered dishes before working with Heston to open London restaurant Dinner in 2011. Within months of opening, Dinner won a Michelin star and was awarded its second a year later. Each amateur cook has five hours to recreate an iconic dish from Ashley's menu at Dinner. Once the four finalists have prepared their complex dishes, they must serve them to Ashley and to judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace. Finally the four amateurs are tasked with creating one dish for John and Gregg that showcases their growing cooking talent. Only three can make it through to the final.
It is the MasterChef final. After an arduous seven-week journey, the search for the country's best amateur cook reaches its climax. The finalists have to push themselves to the limit for one last time before judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace crown one of the three talented cooks the champion. This is their final chance to pull out all the stops and show everything they have learned along the way, and in three hours demonstrate the kind of cook they have become. They must produce the best three dishes of their lives, push their culinary boundaries and produce jaw-droppingly good food for the judges. It's now or never for these exceptional amateur cooks as only one of them can lift the trophy and become the fourteenth MasterChef champion.
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