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Meet The Newest Bite-Sized Batch Of Home Cooks On The Season Premiere Of "MasterChef Junior" Thursday, February 9, On FOX

December 19, 2016 - The kids are back for Season Five of the hit culinary competition series MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, premiering Thursday, Feb. 9 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. Judges Chef Gordon Ramsay and Chef Christina Tosi welcome the latest crop of junior home cooks to the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR kitchen, where they will compete for the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR trophy and the $100,000 grand prize.

After a nationwide search, 40 of the best junior home cooks between the ages of eight and thirteen have been chosen for their final test – a culinary battle in the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR kitchen in front of Chefs Gordon Ramsay and Christina Tosi. Only the 20 best chef-testants who prove they have the chops to take home the trophy will move forward and earn a MASTERCHEF JUNIOR white apron.

This season, the kids will face exciting challenges, including completing a challenge from First Lady Michelle Obama; cooking a meal for more than 50 first responders; MASTERCHEF JUNIOR’s first-ever vegan challenge, from guest judge Mayim Bialik (“The Big Bang Theory”); and cooking for other VIPs, including Julie Bowen (“Modern Family”) and Muppets “Miss Piggy” and “Swedish Chef,” until one talented kid is named America’s next MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, taking home the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR trophy and $100,000 grand prize. 

In the season premiere episode, “The Quest for an Apron Part 1,” 40 junior home cooks come to Los Angeles ready to compete for a MASTERCHEF JUNIOR apron. In each culinary showdown, four chefs receive a unique challenge – from steak, to scallops to cupcakes. Two lucky winners from each group earn an apron and a chance to move on, while two head back home. The competition is tougher than ever as Gordon and Christina separate the best junior chefs from all the rest. All Top 20 contestants will be revealed in the following episode, “The Quest for an Apron Part 2,” airing Thursday, Feb. 16 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.

Watch/share a first look at this season, featuring the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR Top 40:

First Look – YouTube: https://youtu.be/LSJ_ZGIkCHk

Meet the MASTERCHEF JUNIOR Top 40 and find out their signature dishes:

Adam
                    
Age: 12          
Hometown: Sacramento, CA
Signature Dish: Chicken Kiev with Parmesan Potatoes and Asparagus


Afnan 
                    
Age: 12     
Hometown: Jonesboro, GA 
Signature Dish: Surf and Turf with Asparagus and Mashed Potatoes

Anna
                   
Age: 11
Hometown: Houston, TX 
Signature Dish: Buffalo Meatballs with Tomato Sauce


Avani                      

Age: 8
Hometown: Chicago, IL
Signature Dish: Coconut Curry Chicken Over Jasmine Rice

Barbara 
                    
Age: 9       
Hometown: Staten Island, NY
Signature Dish: Fried Plantains with Columbian Cheese


Charlie
                     
Age: 9       
Hometown: Chicago, IL
Signature Dish: Apple Cinnamon Pancakes


Cole                       

Age: 9       
Hometown: Grand Junction, CO
Signature Dish: Smoked Pulled Pork with Peach Barbecue Sauce  

Cooper                   

Age: 10       
Hometown: Douglas, GA
Signature Dish: Swiss Chard Wrapped Salmon with Rice Curry 


Cydney                      

Age: 10   
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Signature Dish: Roasted Lamb Chops with a Mint and Lemon Marinade and Roasted Potatoes


Donovan                     

Age: 9    
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY  
Signature Dish: Vegetable Stir Fry with Squid


Dredyan                     

Age: 9  
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY  
Signature Dish: Oven Baked Atlantic Salmon with Fettuccine and Cream Sauce

Eddie                     

Age: 9
Hometown: New York, NY
Signature Dish: Spaghetti with Meatballs and Marinara Sauce


Elisabeth                      

Age: 9           
Hometown: Sweetwater, TX
Signature Dish: Chicken Alfredo

 

Emma                      

Age: 12       
Hometown: Boston, MA    
Signature Dish: Chicken Meu’niere with Tomato, Parsley and Caper Sauce

Evan                    

Age: 10        
Hometown: Chicago, IL  
Signature Dish: Hickory-Smoked Pork Belly


Gonzalo                     

Age: 11        
Hometown: Whitestone, NY    
Signature Dish: Causa Rellena de Pollo

 

Grace                     

Age: 8    
Hometown: San Diego, CA    
Signature Dish: Smoked Salmon Dip


Hayley                    

Age: 11   
Hometown: Rancho Santa Margarita, CA    
Signature Dish: Poached Salmon with Spaghetti Squash and Salmon


Jake                     

Age: 11         
Hometown: Bellingham, MA
Signature Dish: Roasted Vegetable Panini with Squash, Peppers, Onions and Mushrooms


Jasmine                     

Age: 11        
Hometown: Milton, GA
Signature Dish: Oven-Baked Meatballs with Homemade Tomato Sauce


Jayda                     

Age: 8        
Hometown: Leominster, MA
Signature Dish: Steak Tips and Green Beans with Mashed Potatoes

Jazzy                    

Age: 12       
Hometown: Charlotte, NC
Signature Dish: Homemade Ravioli with Pumpkin Spice Puree and Alfredo Sauce


Justise                   

Age: 11         
Hometown: Sugar Hill, GA
Signature Dish: Grilled Steak with Homemade French Fries


Kaitlyn                   

Age: 11         
Hometown: Blauvelt, NY
Signature Dish: Mofongo


Kamryn                 

Age: 11        
Hometown: Saginaw, MI
Signature Dish: Garlic Shrimp in White Sauce Over Pasta with Garlic Bread


Liani                  

Age: 10        
Hometown: San Antonio, TX
Signature Dish: Carne Asada Tacos with Guacamole


Lila                              

Age: 9         
Hometown: Rockport, MA
Signature Dish: Fresh Pasta with Homemade Marinara Sauce and Crostini


Logan                   

Age: 10         
Hometown: Evanston, IL
Signature Dish: Fish Sticks with Panko Breadcrumbs and Hand Cut Fries


Londyn              

Age: 9        
Hometown: Atlanta, GA
Signature Dish: Vegetarian Lasagna


Madyson               

Age: 9       
Hometown: Temecula, CA
Signature Dish: Grilled Salmon with Lemon and Sautéed Vegetables


Mark                           

Age: 13        
Hometown: Starkville, MS
Signature Dish: Chicken Pot Pie with Homemade Stock


Mashu                

Age: 13         
Hometown: Thousand Oaks, CA
Signature Dish: Homemade Egg Ravioli


Na’Imah              

Age: 10       
Hometown: Chicago, IL
Signature Dish: Red Velvet Cupcakes


Nicholas            

Age: 9       
Hometown: Cypress, TX
Signature Dish: Shrimp Scampi


Peyton               

Age: 10        
Hometown: Ringoes, NJ
Signature Dish: Red Pepper Pesto Pasta

Sam                              

Age: 9         
Hometown: Concord, MA
Signature Dish: Chocolate Cake with Homemade Hot Fudge and Mint Whipped Cream


Samuel                 

Age: 10         
Hometown: Brentwood, TN
Signature Dish: Grilled Chicken with Roasted Broccoli and Mashed Potatoes


Shayne               

Age: 13        
Hometown: Spring, TX
Signature Dish: Parmesan Chicken Tenders


Soloman                

Age: 10        
Hometown: Houston, TX
Signature Dish: Smoked Salmon with Lemon Grass Kale


Sydney                 

Age: 9         
Hometown: West Bend, WI
Signature Dish: Angel Hair Pasta with Onion and Green Pepper Marinara


MASTERCHEF is produced by Endemol Shine North America and One Potato Two Potato, and is based on a format created by Franc Roddam and Endemol Shine. Elisabeth Murdoch, Eden Gaha, Robin Ashbrook, Gordon Ramsay, Adeline Ramage Rooney, Patricia Llewellyn and Ben Adler serve as executive producers. “Like” MASTERCHEF JUNIOR on Facebook at facebook.com/MasterChefJuniorFOX. Follow the series on Twitter @MasterChefJfFOX and join the discussion with #MasterChefJunior. Follow the judges on Twitter: Gordon Ramsay - @gordonramsay; and Christina Tosi - @christinatosi.

ABOUT ONE POTATO TWO POTATO
Renowned for award-winning original programming, One Potato Two Potato produces high-quality TV shows on both sides of the Atlantic, including the smash-hit HOTEL HELL, the blockbuster MASTERCHEF and irresistible spin-off MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, all for FOX; as well as “Best New Restaurant” and competition series “Food Court Wars.” In the U.K., OPTP produces “Gordon Ramsay Behind Bars” and “Gordon Ramsay’s Great Escape,” for Channel 4; food biography and nostalgia series “My Kitchen,” for UKTV’s Good Food Channel; and “Matilda and the Ramsay Bunch,” starring Tilly Ramsay for U.K. children’s channel CBBC. OPTP has also produced two instructional cookery series featuring Gordon Ramsay, “Ultimate Home Cooking” and “Ultimate Cookery Course,” both of which have sold all over the globe. 
 
ABOUT GORDON RAMSAY
Renowned for highly successful and award-winning original programming, multi-Michelin star chef Gordon Ramsay produces TV  shows on both sides of the Atlantic seen by audiences worldwide, including his current FOX shows, HOTEL HELL, MASTERCHEF, MASTERCHEF JUNIOR and MASTERCHEF CELEBRITY SHOWDOWN, as well as FOX’s upcoming THE F WORD; Bravo’s “Best New Restaurant”; and Food Network’s competition series, “Food Court Wars.” In the U.K., he’s produced “Gordon Ramsay Behind Bars” and “Gordon Ramsay’s Great Escape” for Channel 4; food biography and nostalgia series “My Kitchen” for UKTV’s Good Food Channel; two instructional cookery series, “Ultimate Home Cooking” and “Ultimate Cookery Course” for Channel 4; and the first two seasons of “Matilda and the Ramsay Bunch,” starring Tilly Ramsay, for U.K. children's channel CBBC, all under his One Potato Two Potato banner.

His next generation multi-media production company, STUDIO RAMSAY, has a joint venture with All3Media to develop and produce both unscripted and scripted television shows, creating new formats and innovative programing, that includes a scripted arm focused on food-related themes, and development of new talent on a global front. The catalogue of programs that Ramsay has worked on historically with All3Media, via One Potato Two Potato, together with new original content he’s currently developing, make for a unique and dynamic production and distribution partnership.

ABOUT ENDEMOL SHINE NORTH AMERICA
Endemol Shine North America delivers world-class content and compelling storytelling to multiple platforms in the U.S. and across the globe. Endemol Shine North America is part of Endemol Shine Group, the global content creator, producer and distributor with a diverse portfolio of companies that are behind some of the most prominent hit television formats and series in the world.

Its Endemol Shine Studios division develops and produces original scripted television programming in the U.S. for global exploitation and Endemol Shine Latino oversees all Spanish-language sales and development in both the U.S. and now across all of Latin America. Subsidiary production companies include Authentic Entertainment, Original Media, True Entertainment and 51 Minds Entertainment. In addition, Endemol Shine North America has a strategic partnership with Ryan Seacrest Productions.

Endemol Shine Group’s companies in North America are behind such hit series as “Big Brother” (CBS), “The Biggest Loser” (NBC), “Hell on Wheels” (AMC), “Ink Master” (Spike), “Kingdom” (AT&T Audience Network), MASTERCHEF (FOX), MASTERCHEF JUNIOR (FOX), “Swamp People” (History), “The Real Housewives of Atlanta” (Bravo), “Steve Harvey” (NBCU), “T.I. & Tiny: The Family Hustle” (VH1), “Steve Austin’s Broken Skull Challenge” (CMT), “Billion Dollar Buyer” (CNBC) and upcoming “Page Six TV” (Syndicated) “Hunted” (CBS), SUPERHUMAN (FOX) and “I’m Dying Up Here” (Showtime).

[EDITOR’S NOTE: For information on MASTERCHEF JUNIOR, please visit www.foxflash.com.]

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