Santa Sarmah from Assam became the first home cook to make it to the top five in MasterChef India 2023 after acing the last mystery-box challenge on the cooking reality show this week.
Renowned chef Manish Mehrotra joined celebrity chefs Ranveer Brar, Garima Arora and Vikas Khanna as a guest judge on the show. He introduced an exciting mystery box challenge for the top six home cooks — Nayanjyoti Saikia, Gurkirat Singh, Aruna Vijay, Kamaldeep Kaur, Suvarna Bagul and Santa.
Chef Manish brought three mystery boxes with him. One of the three boxes had a syphon gun, while the other two had liquid nitrogen and cooking ingredients, respectively.
Santa impressed the judges with her steamed stuffed bun with celeriac foam, along with kaffir lime and dry dhania chutney. The chefs praised the flavours in her dish and were in awe of the way it was presented to them. Chef Manish commended Santa for her excellent performance and expressed hope that she’d become an accomplished chef one day.
Santa was over the moon after winning the challenge. “The task was difficult as I’ve never used these techniques before. I had to give it my best since it is the finale week. I was nervous but I gave it my all and the judges liked my dish,” she said.
Santa didn’t have to face the black apron challenge this week. Nayanjyoti, Gurkirat, Aruna, Kamaldeep and Suvarna faced a ‘barter task’ in the first of the two rounds in the challenge. Although there was no elimination after the first round, judges announced that two home cooks will be out of the race to the grand finale after the second round.
The grand final of MasterChef India 2023 will be held next week. Legendary chef Sanjeev Kapoor will be joining the show as a guest judge for the final showdown between the home cooks.