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Waiakea Grad Cooking Up a Storm on Television

June 13, 2012, 12:09 PM HST
* Updated September 8, 7:19 PM
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A graduate of Waiakea High School is making a big splash on Fox Television’s “MasterChef.”

Felix Fang, who grew up in Hilo, graduated from the high school in 2005 and now lives in Hollywood, was honored for presenting the best dish during a competition with the top 18 remaining amateur chef contestants broadcast Tuesday night.

Fang’s preparation of a dish featuring breast of duck was singled out by program host and chief judge Gordon Ramsay.

“Great job, really good job indeed,” he said. “The sauce and everything, really restaurant quality.”

The three judges had asked the amateur chefs to prepare a dish using just the ingredients in a “mystery box.”

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In an interview shortly thereafter, Fang, 25, said she was pleased to see duck among the ingredients.

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“My heart lifts because I’ve worked with it before and I know how it tastes,” she said.

As the chef hopefuls got underway, Judge Graham Elliot commented that Fang was no doubt hoping to make the best of her past restaurant experience.

Because her dish was later judged the best, Fang’s next task was to pick a dish for the others to cook from three options which Ramsay said are among the most difficult to prepare.

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Faced with the choice of Italian risotto, clam chowder and Ramsay’s reputed personal favorite meal, beef Wellington, Fang chose the rice dish risotto.

Samantha De Silva of Miami, Fla. was eliminated in the mystery box competition, and the 16 remaining – Fang was not required to compete in the next leg – went to work on the risotto as Fang watched from a landing.

“It feels rather nice to watch from above and watch their cooking style,” she told the camera.

Contestant David Mack of Davie, Fla. was the next to go following the risotto match-ups.

The remaining 16 will return on Monday, June 18 when they will visit Camp Pendleton in California.

According to Fox, there they will work in teams to provide meals for 200 service men and women and then return to the MasterChef kitchen for another elimination round.

The show broadcasts at 8 p.m., Hawaii time.

The 16 are among 30,000 aspiring chefs who originally auditioned for the show and a chance at the $250,000 grand prize.

 

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