Thursday 27 Nov 2014
Georgia, 13, has been crowned winner of Junior MasterChef 2010.
CBBC's search for a Junior MasterChef champion culminated in an exhilarating final show when Georgia was awarded her trophy by judges restaurateur John Torode and former Celebrity MasterChef champion and actress/presenter Nadia Sawalha.
Georgia said: "I'm really, really excited. Being on Junior MasterChef has been the best feeling and experience ever. I thought getting through the heat and then the quarter finals was good, but this is mega-time amazing!"
Of winning she went on to say: "It means everything. This is the best I've ever had in my life and its going to be ever – when I'm getting married I'm not going to be able to say 'I do' without thinking about this!"
John Torode said: "Georgia is a culinary dynamo. She has a huge amount of energy and it shows in her food. From cannelloni to salmon-in-a-bag, right through to a classic pear, almond and blackberry tart – the girl delivers food that tastes fantastic. Georgia is a real talent, truly gifted, and this journey has been amazing."
Nadia Sawalha said: "Georgia is SO passionate about food. She loves being in the kitchen and she deserves to be champion of Junior MasterChef."
Throughout the semi-final and final week Georgia, alongside other finalists Amber (11), Hajrah (12) and George (11), had to demonstrate her passion, skill and determination as the four finalists undertook seriously exciting challenges.
These included travelling in the Tardis to prepare lunch for Dr Who and his companion on set. Cooking for one of the hottest boy bands on the planet – JLS. The Invention Test when they used their imagination to invent a delicious plate of food in one hour from an array of ingredients they've never seen before.
And the infamous Critic's Table, when they cooked one course each in just 50 minutes for popular authors Andy Stanton, Charlie Higson and the bestselling writer of the Tracy Beaker series Dame Jacqueline Wilson.
The final task was to prepare their most delicious three course meal for judges John Torode and Nadia Sawalha.
Georgia's wowing winning menu consisted of a starter of tomato soup with a swirl of basil pesto and mushroom fried toast, a main of fried sea bass with salsa verde and crispy potatoes, and a stack of scotch pancakes with blueberry compote and chantilly cream for dessert.
Georgia, who didn't like food when she was really young, started cooking properly when she was six, when her mum threw away her play fake food. She explains: "One day my mum chucked it away and I was really upset. She couldn't find another one and so I ended up cooking with real food instead."
She now cooks for her family at home, including sisters Lydia 17 and Sophie 20, and says her mum has been her inspiration: "My mum is the best cook I know. I've never ever had ready made dinners – ever. She has helped me practice and she does lots of dinner parties so I help out with her then too."
But what does Georgia like to eat? "My favourite food is fish. I hate lungs, livers, hearts, any organs, and I especially hate jellied eels."
Georgia first thought of entering Junior MasterChef whilst watching a series of MasterChef on TV. She said: "Because I want to be a chef when I'm older, I've never missed a series of MasterChef. I love it and I've always wanted to go on it. I was watching MasterChef when I saw an advert for an application for Junior MasterChef, so I printed it off. I didn't think I'd get very far, but I thought it would be a good experience to do."
Right from the start of the series, Georgia impressed with her passion and ability to cook great food from scratch. "It was really nerve wracking presenting my dishes to the judges, but I thought they were both very nice and they gave us really good tips. The other day I cooked a steak the way John said to and it went actually a lot better.
"My favourite bit was definitely cooking for JLS because I'm one of their biggest fans! I love cooking so being able to cook for them was so much fun and quite overwhelming. My worst bit was probably the mystery box challenge because I didn't feel prepared, but I still enjoyed it."
Of dreams for the future Georgia said: "I love to cook, and one of my other passions is horse riding. My dream is to have a family house with horses and a restaurant, in Cornwall. I don't want a Michelin Star restaurant because that's too much pressure, I'd love an Italian-inspired vegetarian restaurant."
Junior MasterChef was made for CBBC by Shine Television Limited. The Executive Editor for Shine is Karen Ross and the Executive Producer for the BBC is Bridget Banton.
CBBC won the Children's Channel of the Year Award at the Children's BAFTAs in November 2008 and was named Children's Channel of the Year at the Broadcast Digital Awards in June 2009.
Figures show that CBBC is one of the most-loved channels for children, and it reaches more six to 12-year-olds than any other children's channel in the UK.
Almost a third of all six to 12-year-olds in digital homes in the UK tune into CBBC on a weekly basis.
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