MasterChef
MasterChef's Joe Bastianich Blogs About Season 4 Auditions | Joe Bastianich

Credit: Matt Hoyle/FOX

Joe Bastianich is a restaurateur, winemaker, author and one of the judges of MasterChef. He'll be blogging each week about the show's search for the best home cooks. Follow him on Twitter @Jbastianich or visit his joebastianich.com.

Hello, MasterChef fans!

It is great to be back for another season of the world's most-watched culinary competition show! In addition to having some of our strongest contenders to date, season 4 brings some pretty amazing guests judges, including the great Paula Deen and the easy-on-the-eyes (and very restaurant savvy) Eva Longoria, to name a few ...

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Judge Joe Bastianich: Why Christine Ha Won MasterChef

Originally posted 09/11/2012 07:30 PM

Joe Bastianich Blogs: Why Christine Ha Won MasterChef

Credit: FOX (2)

On Monday's finale we watched the culmination of a stellar and emotional season of MasterChef. The level of talent this year had an almost pioneering quality to it – and our final two, Josh Marks and Christine Ha, both exemplified this beautifully in the finale.

The last challenge from which we select the winner will always be a nail biting experience. However, this year felt a little different.

Since the finale was pre-taped, we had a viewing party with Josh, Christine and their families at Eataly in New York. I was able to relive the final day and its excitement alongside Christine and Josh.

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MasterChef Season 3 Winner Revealed

Originally posted 09/10/2012 10:30 PM

MasterChef Season 3 Winner Revealed

Credit: Greg Gayne/FOX

MasterChef judges Gordon Ramsay, Joe Bastianich and Graham Elliot started season 3 by inviting 100 home cooks to Los Angeles to show off their best dishes. After weeks of intense competition and countless flavorful foods, only two remained, Josh Marks and Christine Ha, the show's first blind contestant.

So who took home the prizes – including $250,000 and a cook book deal – on Monday's finale? Keep reading to find out. Spoilers ahead!

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Serve Up Christine Ha's Noodles for MasterChef Finale

Credit: Courtesy Rodale; Inset: Cindy Ord/Getty

Dish after dish, MasterChef contestant Christine Ha has proven she doesn't need sight to master the one sense that might matter the most in the kitchen: taste.

Now Ha, 33, the cooking competition's first blind contestant, will whip up one last culinary creation on the show's season finale, airing Monday (9 p.m. EST) on Fox. Whether you're rooting for her or fellow finalist Josh Marks, embrace your inner master chef with one of Ha's Gordon Ramsay-approved creations, which is featured in MasterChef: The Ultimate Cookbook (in stores Sept. 18).

Stir Fry Noodles with Seared Scallops
Serves 4

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MasterChef's Joe Bastianich Sizes Up the Finalists

Originally posted 09/05/2012 10:15 AM

MasterChef's Joe Bastianich Blogs About Season Finale

Credit: Michael Lavine/FOX

Joe Bastianich is a successful restaurateur, vineyard owner and author of the memoir Restaurant Man. He's also a judge on MasterChef, which challenges home cooks to prove they can cut it in top professional kitchens. Each week he's blogging season 3 of Fox's hit show, offering an insider's take on the competition.

This week's episode of MasterChef brings us one step closer to finding our next winner! Becky, Josh and Christine battled through part one of the finale and surprisingly it was our consummate frontrunner Becky who underperformed.

Putting yourself on a plate apparently isn't as easy as it looks – and I honestly thought this challenge was too simple for our top three.

For Becky to end her time here over a horribly butchered filet of fish is something that still shocks me. I'll never understand why she didn't choose something she knew beyond the shadow of a doubt that she could ace – a dumb move for such a smart girl. I would have chosen something I could have prepared drunk or in my sleep and still executed to perfection. This challenge was meant for playing it safe! Prepare something within in your repertoire – and nail it! Her failure here was a prime example of overconfidence, which can be a killer.

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MasterChef's Joe Blogs: Why Frank and Josh Blew It

Originally posted 08/29/2012 08:40 PM

Joe Bastianich Blogs: Frank and Josh Missed a Golden Opportunity

Credit: Greg Gayne/FOX (2)

Joe Bastianich is a successful restaurateur, vineyard owner and author of the memoir Restaurant Man. He's also a judge on MasterChef, which challenges home cooks to prove they can cut it in top professional kitchens. Each week he's blogging season 3 of Fox's hit show, offering an insider's take on the competition.

On Tuesday's MasterChef, our four remaining contenders were given the thrilling – albeit terrifying – privilege of preparing a meal for three of the most inspiring and intimidating culinary figures in the world.

Alain Ducasse, Daniel Boulud and Guy Savoy are about as high up on the ladder as one can go. No matter who takes the cake in the MasterChef finale, they will have the memory of this experience forever.

I think Frank and Josh missed a golden opportunity here. Everyone knows there is no love lost between them, but let's put their situation in perspective: Two months ago they were tinkering around at home where their biggest challenge was deciding what to prepare for their next dinner party – and now they're serving true culinary greats.

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MasterChef's Joe Blogs About Finding the Final Four

Originally posted 08/22/2012 12:35 PM

MasterChef's Joe Bastianich Blogs About Finding the Final Four | Joe Bastianich

Credit: Greg Gayne/FOX

Joe Bastianich is a successful restaurateur, vineyard owner and author of the memoir Restaurant Man. He's also a judge on MasterChef, which challenges home cooks to prove they can cut it in top professional kitchens. Each week he's blogging season 3 of Fox's hit show, offering an insider's take on the competition.

We are down to our own Fab Five on MasterChef!

Allowing our remaining home cooks to use self-selected ingredients is so beyond their skill level at this point, I'm honestly surprised they thought it would be that easy. With $250,000 up for grabs, they should have seen it coming. Graham, Gordon and I took a look around that kitchen and realized the best way to trip them up was to let their extreme diversity pose the challenge.

There is an unspoken but absolute belief among the contestants that Becky is the frontrunner by a long shot. The problem this poses for Becky is that she, too, believes this blindly. While I admire a strong sense of self-confidence, there is always a happy medium.

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Jennifer Behm: The Best Amish Country Has to Offer

Credit: Chris Tomko/FOX

Season 2 MasterChef winner Jennifer Behm is a food lover, owner of Pink Martini Catering, a soon-to-be wife, an adventurer – and this summer a food blogger for PEOPLE.com.

This week has been filled with lots of fun stuff.  A trip to the Baltimore Aquarium, an excursion to Philly to enjoy South Street, and a trip to one of my favorite places: Amish Country.  

As an avid snorkeler and surfer with an immense love of sea turtles, I find the Baltimore Aquarium such an amazing place. They have a gorgeous green turtle named Calypso, who was rescued from the wild due to an infection in her left fin. Her diet: seven heads of lettuce a day. Boy, I would have a great figure if that was all I ate. I like my lettuce with a little more accoutrements (LOL), like garbanzo beans, cucumbers, cherry tomatoes and pickled vegetables.  

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MasterChef's Joe Bastianich Blogs: The Fighting Gets Dirtier

Originally posted 08/15/2012 02:00 PM

Joe Bastianich: The Fighting Gets Dirtier

Credit: Michael Lavine/FOX

Joe Bastianich is a successful restauranteur, vineyard owner and author of the memoir Restaurant Man. He's also a judge on MasterChef, which challenges home cooks to prove they can cut it in top professional kitchens. Each week he's blogging season 3 of Fox's hit show, offering an insider's take on the competition.

On Tuesday's episode of MasterChef, our final six conducted service at none other than the great Hatfield's of Los Angeles. This is a restaurant of significance, a Michelin-starred establishment, and it is time for the home cooks to show us their capability as professionals.

While I was thrilled to finally see that Christine was not picked last by a team captain, I was questioning whether it was fair to put her in this challenge. My comments may have offended some, but the fact remains – she cannot see, and we threw her into a complex kitchen without giving her time to familiarize herself with her environment and its hazards. She doesn't have the advantage of spotting potential dangers visually like the other home cooks. This is just a fact. If you've read my book Restaurant Man, you know that I don't hold back on my opinions.

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MasterChef's Joe Blogs About Redemption in the Kitchen

Originally posted 07/24/2012 08:45 AM

Joe Bastianich Blogs About Redemption in the Kitchen

Credit: FOX (2)

It's getting down the wire with only six contestants left on an intense third season of MasterChef. Taking a hard look at this group, we judges could not help but wonder if there might be a few who still deserved to be here.

We decided to throw a major curveball and do something we've never done before on the show by giving a huge opportunity to those who've recently said goodbye. Giving the last eight contestants to go a chance at redemption was not only something they deserved, but a great way to ensure our top six aren't getting too cozy.

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