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MasterChef Junior S01E04: It’s A Piece Of Cake To Bake A Pretty Cake

[Ed. Note: Sarah Ramos is an actress, director, and writer. Fox’s new series MasterChef Junior combines her (I assume) love of children, chefs, and cooking competitions in which children pretend to be adult chefs, so she will be taking us through the season!]

So much happened in this episode. It’s as though the drama is ramping up as the season progresses! It made me think about how quickly life passes you by. One minute it is the third episode of MasterChef Junior, then you blink, and suddenly, your boyfriend tells you, “It’s too late to start watching. I won’t know any of the characters,” and your mom says she “doesn’t watch that stuff.” The candle is certainly burning at both ends — in life, and in this episode.

The first challenge of the night was a MyStErY bOx ChAlLeNgE!!!!!! The contestants opened their boxes and revealed their ingredients to be…not gummi bears. The ingredients were actually specifically intended to gross the contestants out –- kidneys, snails, sardines, etc.! and everyone was grossed out by the “stench” and look of the food, so it was a big success.

Dara made a blue cheese soufflé, Troy made snail chowder, and Alexander made sticky toffee pudding using dates (which are NOT a gross or weird ingredient). After the challenge, Graham literally invited Alexander up to the stage using the nickname “Big Al” which felt at once both too intimate and forced.

Look, it’s heartbreaking and adorable to watch a lonely person seek friendship or be comfortable doing strange, misguided things. Who am I to pass judgment on a grown man in a polyester vest expressing himself by writing “Wow” in in caramel sauce?

Who am I to criticize a totally cool adult’s fondness for a pre-teen whom he doesn’t know at all? Life is complicated. I’m just a grump. I’m no fun. And, like I said, lots happened in this episode — we don’t have time to dwell on every little thing.

Sarah’s sardines won the challenge so the MasterChef Junior people awarded her with gummi bears! I get that it’s a reference to when she said that the gross ingredients were “so not gummi bears!” (LOL – kids!) but the amount of gummi bears is just inappropriate. Are the MasterChef Junior people trying to flaunt how much cash they have lying around to waste on unnecessary prizes that will actually promote Sarah’s scary, competitive attitude?

What I’m saying is: Sarah scared me a little bit tonight, and maybe she doesn’t need the encouragement. She is cute and all, and it’s funny that she’s so competitive and wants to get rid of Alexander, but I also wonder what will happen when she reaches the age that being cocky isn’t cute anymore. She actually said, “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.” A CHILD! Whether or not the MasterChef Junior producers told her to say that, what I’m saying is that I hope Sarah stays grounded and waits until she is at least 18 to lord her sexuality over others and depend on it because the world is a confusing place and only needs one Chloe Moretz.

For the next challenge, Sarah decides that everyone has to bake layer cakes. Well, we all know that it’s a piece of cake to bake a pretty cake! But it turns out that that’s not true? I don’t know. Graham Elliott says that layer cakes are really hard to bake. A lot of the contestants must have used messy recipes because their cakes turned out crazy! Alexander’s sucks! Can you believe it?! ALEXANDER IS THE ONE WHO MAKES DESSERTS! I feel like I know a lot more about Alexander now that I’ve seen this icing job. It’s interesting to watch someone who is clearly capable of greatness (greatness!) create something that is just such a piece of garbage. And the MasterChef logo is ugly in general but that splotchy streak of purple is just the mark of Alexander’s moment of sad defeat. #Deathofasalesman

Everyone except Dara had a hard time with the cake. Joe, in his usual eloquent Joe style, told Dara that even though he doesn’t like cake, he liked her cake. Gavin made a “chocoholic delight” cake and was really proud of it, which is always fun. Those were the two best cakes. Sofia started crying in the middle of baking her cake, and Gordon Ramsay helped her get it together. She and Kaylen made the worst cakes.

In the middle of all this drama, Gordon Ramsay called Jack “Hawaiian Jack” (cool) and said that even though Gordon Ramsay was really homesick for his own son Jack who “cooks like an angel,” eating Hawaiian Jack’s food made him less homesick? Okay! It didn’t really make sense. Also, earlier Ramsay prayed to the God of soufflé, because I told you a lot happened this episode.

Anyway, when it was time for elimination, Alexander really thought he was going to go home. There was a lot of dramatic music and Gordon Ramsay said, “This is as hard for us as it is for you all,” which isn’t at all true. But when Sofia and Kaylen had to go home, we did all feel sad for them. Then we forgot about it one second later.

Because Ramsay said, “Come here, you, gorgeous” to Kaylen. And Kaylen took solace in the fact that she’s “the only girl who poured completely unwhipped cream on Chef Ramsay’s head.” There was just really normal cool stuff happening in the MasterChef Kitchen. Next week, the kiddies are cooking in a real restaurant’s kitchen! As the song goes, “I drove my car into restaurant and ate food that I didn’t know was cooked by children! I don’t care! I love it!”