By Sammi Turano 

What made you decide to audition for MasterChef?

I had previously auditioned for a different cooking show at the suggestion of a good friend, and the casting director remembered me and requested that I come to their open call.

What are some highlights from the experience?

Meeting a lot of great people, working with some of the greatest chefs, & expanding my cooking experience and skills.

What were some of your biggest challenges? 

Being away from my family, friends and our business with minimal communication for so long.

What is your signature dish?

Rack of lamb. Not really, that's just a little MasterChef humor. I messed up on that one.  If I had to name only one, I'd probably say chicken-fried pork chops with jalapeƱo cream gravy.  That's what earned me my shot at MasterChef.

What is one dish you want to learn how to make?

I'd really like to learn to cook more Asian dishes and become proficient with the sous vide.

What would people be surprised to know about you?

I am a voracious reader, and my cooking strength is really cooking with classic French sauces.

What are you watching on TV these days?

MasterChef?  Cooking shows, of course, the educational type, anything on RFD, re-runs of Suits, Two and a Half Men and Rules of Engagement, and Dallas Cowboy football, of course.

Anything else you want to tell America?

As I said many times while filming MasterChef, we are all ladies and gentlemen living with ladies and gentlemen, and we should treat one another in the same manner; and whether you're given a second chance at life or not, you should live life to the fullest, with no regrets, as long as it's not illegal.

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