MasterChef finds themselves “Cooking for Horsetown U.S.A.” in the 10th episode

MASTERCHEF: L-R: Gordon Ramsay, Aarón Sánchez and Joe Bastianich in the “Back to Win: Gordon Ramsay Loves Vegans!” episode airing Wednesday, July 13 (9:01-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. © 2022 FOX MEDIA LLC. CR: FOX.
MASTERCHEF: L-R: Gordon Ramsay, Aarón Sánchez and Joe Bastianich in the “Back to Win: Gordon Ramsay Loves Vegans!” episode airing Wednesday, July 13 (9:01-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. © 2022 FOX MEDIA LLC. CR: FOX. /

As much as MasterChef: Back to Win is all about the past and bringing back former contestants, it is also a season of firsts. And their latest MasterChef first has our cheftestants “Cooking for Horsetown U.S.A.” for the 10th episode of the season.

While things started off more relaxed with a rodeo featuring our judges in the iconic U.S. Mail carriage, it quickly turned into another MasterChef team challenge. And the challenge is all about feeding all of the people in the Norco Horsetown U.S.A. location.

Shelly and Bri were chosen as the team leaders in an effort to overcome their bottom three finish from the last episode, and they got to pick their own teams. (No surprise to us that Bri chose Fred right away.)

The teams have to cook up 101 dishes and their primary protein is bone-in steak. The teams have access to wood fired grills to inspire them to cook like the cowboys and girls they are cooking for.

MasterChef sees our top 14 take on another team challenge to cook for 101 people

Off the bat the blue team, which was captained by Shelly, seemed to not want to take suggestions from each other. It was like the stronger personalities dominated the conversation. And while that can be a good thing in the long run, it can also cause problems down the line.

Over on the red side of the kitchen, which had Bri as our captain, it was a bit different. Bri delegated things to her team and took suggestions from everyone. But when it came down to actually leading, then things got a bit shaky. As Derrick pointed out, Bri really needed to step up and use her voice to be heard in the kitchen.

But of course, this is all happening at the very start of the cooking. So, things could turn around and we could see Bri lead her team to victory by speaking up or it could go to Shelly based on her ability to truly lead a diverse group of strong voices.

During the early tasting for the judges, Bri’s team got some great feedback on the steak itself. The only real note was the lack of cabbage in the slaw.

Over on Shelly’s side, things were not so calm leading into the tasting, but once the judges were served, they weren’t happy with the steak. They wanted a sear and a crust on that steak. And the slaw needs to be punched up. Even the compound butter they made wasn’t quite right (which is what one of the team members pointed out only to be shut down).

Honestly, the “disrespect” on the blue team was so disappointing to watch. It was like half the team wanted nothing to do with each other and they were just being disagreeable in order to be heard. This was the first time I was truly disappointed in some of the contestants.

Over on the red team, we had an issue with seasoning and then Gabe overheated and needed to have someone cover for him at the grill.

While we knew this challenge was going to be difficult, it was so much more than that. From the blue team not being ready to start serving when their hungry cowboys showed up to cold corn on the red side, this team challenge was rocky right up to the very end.

But at the end of the day, which team came out on top? According to the diners, the winning team was the red team! (Considering the way they worked together, it was really nice to see the teamwork being rewarded.) It was also nice to see Derrick getting a special shoutout for his ability to man the grill and get those steaks cooked.

While the blue team was apparently surprised by their loss, a number of the complaints were things that were pointed out to them early on. So of course, it was a member of the blue team that was sent home. And who ended up going home at the end of the challenge? Unfortunately, that would be Shelly, the captain of the team.

Next. MasterChef’s Tommy Walton chats with us about his return for Back to Win season. dark