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'MasterChef Junior' eliminates LIer Kayla Mitchell

Contestant Kayla Mitchell, 11, of Center Moriches, in

Contestant Kayla Mitchell, 11, of Center Moriches, in the “Junior Edition: Restaurant Takeover” episode of "MasterChef, which aired Tuesday, Feb. 10, 2015, on Fox. Credit: Fox / Greg Gayne

MasterChef Junior contestant Kayla Mitchell, 11, of Center Moriches, who was eliminated from the competition on Tuesday night’s episode, said she learned so much about cooking from her six episodes on the show.
“I learned how to work in an actual restaurant kitchen,” she said in a telephone interview directly after Tuesday’s show. “I learned how to make crème anglaise and homemade sausage. I hope I still inspire people to cook even though I didn’t win.”
Kayla said she’s “really disappointed” that her time on the reality show is over, but that she made lifelong friends with the other young chefs. “We still text and FaceTime every single day. We’re definitely going to keep in touch through everything that happens in our lives.”
Kayla enjoyed viewing parties with friends on Long Island during several of the episodes, and had the opportunity to cook as a guest chef at Amici Italian restaurant in Mount Sinai and at Brothers Four Pizzeria in Center Moriches during the past few weeks of her fame.
Tuesday night’s episode took place in the kitchen of a high-end restaurant in Los Angeles, where two teams of three junior chefs each had to prepare lunch for customers who evaluated the meals. The dishes in the competition included appetizers of Mediterranean Octopus and English Pea Ravioli and main courses of Skate Wings and Flat Iron Steak. At least two members on the losing team would be sent home.
On the episode, Kayla said that competition made all the previous ones seem “like nothing.” Gordon Ramsey and the other celebrity chefs who judge the contestants were in the restaurant kitchen watching and coaching. “It’s a little challenging working while Gordon is yelling,” Kayla said on the show, adding that during those 90 minutes she “aged a couple of years.”
In her phone interview Tuesday after the show, Kayla said one of the things that hurt her team in was the fact that the two main courses -- skate and steak -- sound so similar. When Ramsey and the other celebrity chefs called out orders, her team sometimes scrambled them, she said. “I guess what did me in was just the pressure and the stress of cooking in a restaurant.”
Upon her televised elimination, Kayla held back tears and hugged Ramsey. He told her to “continue cooking with your head up high.”
Four junior chefs remain to vie for the $100,000 and trophy for MasterChef Junior Season Three. Kayla will be watching the final two episodes -- even she doesn’t know who will ultimately win.

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