Now in its 12th year , MasterChef is the UK’s most popular cooking competition. Across twenty-four episodes, judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace set some extraordinary culinary challenges, in their search to unearth Britain’s best amateur cook. Each year thousands apply but only the best amateur cooks are chosen to take part.
Competitors face a grueling series of culinary challenges as they first have to get through their heat and quarter final. From inventing dishes on the spot, to cooking their own menu for the nation’s fiercest food critics, the pressure is on from the very outset. Only a handful survive to take part in the semi-final and final challenges.
These challenges take contestants on a culinary odyssey of a lifetime. Over the last ten years, MasterChef has traversed the globe taking the best cooks to test their skills in countries as diverse as India, Thailand, France and Central America. Contestants have catered for prime ministers at Downing Street, weddings in Australia, on warships in the North Sea and have even cooked in the kitchens of Buckingham Palace.
Over twelve years John and Gregg have seen 850 contestants and tasted almost 10000 plates of food. Although there is no prize, past winners finalists and competitors have gone on to carve out new careers in food – from working in professional kitchens, opening restaurants, catering companies to writing cookbooks and teaching in cookery schools.
The series itself has proven so popular that it has spawned highly successful spin off series in the UK - Celebrity MasterChef, MasterChef - the Professionals and Junior MasterChef. It has also enjoyed unprecedented success worldwide. Currently airing in over 33 countries and being produced in over 30 countries, the show has developed into a multi award winning, much loved favourite on television screens around the globe.