‘MasterChef’ season 11 episode 2 recap: ‘Legend’ Curtis Stone helps hand out 4 white aprons [UPDATING LIVE BLOG]

MasterChef: Legends” continued living up to its name, with this week’s special guest star being Curtis Stone. The Australian chef-lebrity (and former “Celebrity Apprentice” contestant) aided host Gordon Ramsay and judges Joe Bastianich and Aaron Sanchez in the second episode when it came to judging the signature dishes of several aspiring auditioners. These home cooks had only 45 minutes to impress the judges in the hopes of earning a coveted white apron. By episode’s end, Curtis helped to hand out four such aprons. So which talented foodies officially joined the competition this week?

Below, read our minute-by-minute “MasterChef” recap of Season 11, Episode 2, titled “Legends: Curtis Stone – Auditions Round 2,” to find out what happened Wednesday, June 9 at 8:00 p.m. ET/PT. Then be sure to sound off in the comments section about your favorite aspiring chefs on Fox’s reality TV show and who you think has what it takes to join the winners list.

8:00 p.m. — “Previously on ‘MasterChef!” In last week’s premiere, the first-ever “Legend” was none other than culinary genius Emeril Lagasse. He helped the other judges give out white aprons to the home cooks who impressed them the most. In all, a total of six aprons were awarded (see the details here), which meant there were still nine left to go. Who will be officially be joining the cast this week? Let’s find out!

8:05 p.m. — The “MasterChef” auditions continue as the next round of home cooks get ready. Gordon reminds them that only nine aprons remain before introducing “Hollywood’s King of Meat,” Curtis Stone as this round’s legendary judge. Curtis tells them he started cooking as a young child with his mother and grandmothers. He moved to London to kickstart his career and now he’s a Michelin star-winning chef. Curtis tells the home cooks that flavor is important and they shouldn’t overcomplicate their plates. Each home cook will have 45 minutes to create their signature dish and convince at least three judges they’re worthy of a white apron.

8:12 p.m. — First up is Anne, a 39-year old small business owner from Kalamazoo, Michigan. Her biggest inspiration is her father, who taught her to cook, but sadly passed away from early-onset dementia. She serves up roasted duck a la cherry with smashed potatoes and bok choy. Gordon says the duck is cooked beautifully, but the bok choy is raw. Aaron says the duck is so good that he can overlook the other elements of the dish. Joe says the duck is overcooked and the bok choy tastes like dirty water. Ouch! Curtis and Aaron give Anne a yes, but Joe says no. That means it’s all up to Gordon. He says yes and Anne receives the first apron of the night!

8:20 p.m. — Next up is Brit, a 25-year old model from Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. She has prepared a Thai mahi curry and Curtis likes the spice level, but he’s disappointed some ingredients came out of a jar. Before we hear if Brit receives an apron, we are introduced to Bernardo, a 31-year old social worker from Washington, D.C. He cooked green mole with pork with white rice and caramelized onions. Curtis says the pumpkin seeds used in Bernardo’s dish are a little overbearing. Gordon says he used the wrong cut of meat for pulled pork. Both Brit and Bernardo are sent home without an apron.

8:25 p.m. — The competition continues with Josey, a 30-year old IT tech from Atlanta. She loves her job and works for an awesome company, but cooking is her passion. Josey is most excited to meet Aaron, who she’s been following for years. She has prepared Brazilian tacos for the judges and Gordon says they need more protein. On top of that, the tortillas are a bit pasty. The other judges agree that the tacos are too dense, but some of the flavors are good. Josey has a great energy, but she won’t be moving forward. But it’s not all bad news for Josey, who is invited to expand her culinary skills at Aaron’s restaurant in New Orleans.

8:35 p.m. — Abe is a NYU student and one of the youngest home cooks at age 22. His love for cooking comes from the frequent travel he was able to do as a child because his mother is a diplomat. He is presenting crispy skinned red snapper with avocado puree, deep fried tostada and pico de gallo. Gordon says the fish is cooked beautifully and the pico de gallo is delicious, but it doesn’t need cheese. Curtis calls it “wonderful,” but Aaron is confused by Abe’s technique of frying flour tortillas. Aaron says no to Abe, but the other three judges are sold. Abe gets his apron!

8:45 p.m. — Next up is Joseph, a 32-year old environmental engineer from Houston. He can’t shake his desire to cook and considers it his passion. Joseph prepares steamed red snapper with Southeast Asian herb salad. Aaron calls it visually sophisticated and elegant. Curtis appreciates the risk he took by preparing a simple dish and executing it to perfection. Gordon says it “oozes confidence.” Joe says it’s an excellent dish with no negative comments. Joseph gets his apron with a resounding yes from the judges.

8:50 p.m. — The next cook is an 18-year old high school student named Nayha from Greenvill, South Carolina. She learned how to cook on Instagram, YouTube and Snapchat. She presents Gobi Manchurian and fried cauliflower with Indo-Chinese sauce and fried rice. Curtis says the cauliflower is the star of the dish, but the soy sauce confuses it. Aaron appreciates her development of flavors at such a young age, but thinks her dish is too immature. Joe calls it tasty, but unfocused. The chefs love her ambition, but it’s not the right time for this teenager.

8:59 p.m. — Annai is a 25-year old legal assistant from Dallas. She enjoys adding a Latin twist to comfort foods. Annai wants to show the world that Mexican food can be elegant. She cooked flank steak chili relleno with rice & beans, tomato sauce, Oaxaca cheese and Mexican crema. Gordon loves the finesse and plating. Curtis appreciates the cook of the steak and Aaron likes the traditional components, but doesn’t care for the sauce. With all that said, Annai gets the last apron of the night! The auditions wrap up next week with culinary queen Paula Deen as the legendary guest judge.

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