'MasterChef' cuts Jessie Lysiak and Krissi Biasiello, determines Natasha Crnjac and Luca Manfe as Top 2
By Elizabeth Kwiatkowski, 09/05/2013
MasterChef eliminated Jessie Lysiak and Krissi Biasiello and determined its final two home cooks who will compete in next week's finale during Wednesday night's two-hour broadcast of the Fox culinary competition's fourth season.
Jessie, a 27-year-old yacht stewardess from Social Circle, GA, was ousted from the competition after she was defeated by Natasha Crnjac, a 26-year-old stay-at-home mom from San Diego, CA, and Luca Manfe, a 31-year-old restaurant manager from Astoria, NY, in a semifinal elimination-test cookoff, which required the three cooks to each select an ingredient and prepare their best dish in 60 minutes utilizing Kobe beef from Japan, Alaskan king crab or Grana Padano cheese from Italy.
"We really want to see you out there, and I would [like to] send you a very genuine welcome to any of my restaurants, wherever you want, if you wanted to come work for us. We would love to have you," Joe told Jessie upon her elimination.
"I didn't think I was going home tonight with only having to beat two more people. That really just sucks, but I'm so proud of getting this far -- from thousands to three, so. This has been the hardest thing ever, but I'm so much stronger and have become a different person from it. I definitely belong in food, and now, I've got a clear vision of what to do. They truly believe in me. It was the exact confirmation I needed, and now I know that food will be a part of my life forever," Jessie said following her ouster.
The order of which the amateur cooks got to choose their ingredient was based on what place they had finished in during the season's last Mystery Box challenge, which required the contestants to cook a new and improved version of the signature dish that had initially got them cast on MasterChef in 60 minutes or less.
Jessie -- who had come in first place in the Mystery Box challenge after presenting a "stunning" sea bass en croute dish -- picked Kobe beef, second-place finisher Natasha opted to cook with king crab, and Luca was therefore left with the cheese.
Krissi was sent home during the first hour of the competition's Wednesday night broadcast after the Final 4 home cooks competed in a cookoff in which they were paired into two teams of two. Each team had to prepare a restaurant-worthy three-course meal in 90 minutes or less, featuring the ingredients inside their Mystery Box. The ingredients included lamb, lobster, rainbow trout, beets, parsnips, etc.
The winning team would immediately advance into the finale, while the losing team members would be forced to face off in a subsequent "pressure test" for the last spot in the finals. Krissi was paired with Jessie, and they went up against Natasha and Luca. Natasha and Luca ended up winning the challenge.
For Jessie and Krissi's pressure test, the two ladies were instructed to prepare three separate chocolate desserts in 75 minutes or less: a souffle, mousse and lava cake. Jessie's souffle and lava cake were just a tad superior to Krissi's, so Jessie advanced to the finals.
"Krissi, this is very emotional and difficult for me. I've gotten to know you very well. I have to tell you from my heart, that was so close. It gives me goosebumps to have to make that decision. It was literally one of the most difficult decisions, not only that I've made on this show, but maybe even my life. I'll do one more. I'll take one off your bucket list. When you and Mikey come to New York, you'll have dinner with me and my mom. We can rehash this whole thing again. Congratulations," Joe told Krissi upon her elimination.
"This experience has told me that I'm a lot better than I thought I was. I've learned more here than I've ever learned in 20 years of cooking! I know that I stayed true to my roots during this whole journey. I wasn't fake. I was me all the way through," Krissi said following her ouster.
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"I'm not going to apologize for anything. I'm definitely proud of what I accomplished. I just really wanted to win for my kid. Everything that I do is for my kid. Even though I didn't take home the prize, I'm taking home a lot more to my kids. I always knew that I was a great cook, but now, I'm a great chef. It's yours Mikey!"