“We do mostly Southern cooking,” she said. “We do touch on French techniques. I have a class on June 6 on mint chocolate chip cake.” She said 15 to 25 people usually sign up.
“I have a core group that takes all the classes,” she added. “We have a whole production studio in my living room and kitchen.”
She said her cooking techniques have improved since the show taped two years ago. “The classes challenge me to be better and work harder,” she said. “My food has elevated itself even past the show. I’m proud of myself in the presentation of my dishes.”
This particular season of “MasterChef” was partially shot before the pandemic. Ten out of 18 episodes, including the ones Hunter appears in, were finished before production was shut down for seven months. The final eight episodes were shot in October and November.
In those early episodes, there will be lots of hugging, family members galore and no social distancing whatsoever. It will be interesting to see how much of that shifts when episode 11 airs later this summer.
Besides the three judges ― Gordon Ramsay, Joe Bastianich and Aarón Sánchez ― this newest season will include a raft of big-name chefs as judges such as Curtis Stone, Emeril Lagasse, Jonathan Waxman, Roy Choi, Nancy Silverton, Morimoto and Georgia’s own Paula Deen. The cast over the first three episodes will be pared down to just 15 finalists.
In the first episode, Atlanta resident and Cuba native Alejandro Valdivia is seeking an apron. He cooks fresh herb-crusted lamb chops for Ramsay, Bastianich, Sanchez and Lagasse. “As a little boy in Cuba, there wasn’t much around,” he said. “It is humbling to just cook for the four of you.”
“MasterChef Legends.” Season 11 debuts at 8 p.m. Wednesday, June 2, on Fox.