For those among you who just happen to haven't watched this intense and widely popular Reality-TV program, MasterChef Australia brings together every year some dozen home cooks to battle it out in the Masterchef Kitchen for the best chef title in the country. The contestants are submitted, live on TV, to a series of tough challenges that are judged by top Australian chefs.
Launched in 2009, and broadcasted worldwide, this program has run 610 episodes so far and is rated 8.2 stars by IMDb's users, with many episodes scoring 9.1 stars.
This year, a young and talented Lebanese descendant, aged 22, born and raised in Sydney, Australia, took the tough challenge and entered the competition as the youngest contestant in the group.
Meet Larissa Takchi, known today as the youngest ever to win on MasterChef Australia!
Larissa's fascination for cooking started at a young age while watching her mother Jeannette preparing the family meals in their kitchen at home. Her passion for cooking initiated at that stage, so did gradually her self-taught skills. That brought her this year to enter the MasterChef Australia's live contest, one of the most challenging cooking contests in the world.
Larissa, the youngest contestant in her group, reached the finale in the Masterchef Kitchen facing two of the very best: Tessa Boersma and Simon Toohey.
However, at that finale stage, Larissa struggled, putting us on edge at her risking to lose the competition. “I am paralyzed in fear because I don’t know what to do,” she said. This is when you get to live with your favorite contestant one of those emotional moments as a spectator.
In self-doubt, wanting to quit at the most crucial moment of the competition, Larissa turned to the crowd to look at her mother and her loved ones who weren't about to let her quit. "You can do this," her mother told her in all confidence, which incited Larissa back onto her challenge at hand, and with more stamina.
Later on, Larissa said to the local media 10 daily, "My family was sort of just right there in the corner and they were all just screaming at me like, ‘Don’t you dare, don’t you dare!’
Larissa's struggle was mainly with the concoction of her sorbet. We tend to say when ordering a sorbet, "You can never go wrong with a delicious fresh sorbet." Yet, you can if you are the one preparing it. Larissa's sorbet was coming out with a frozen solid texture.
Despite that, Larissa wooed the judges with her main dish of marron and fennel puree, and also her entree of bone marrow with soubise -an old school French sauce made mostly from onions and that isn't so common anymore.
However, it was that which she struggled the most, the Szechuan pavlova with beetroot and blackberry sorbet, that got her the trophy, scoring a trio of perfect 10s:
In fact, Larissa won with an impressive score of 85/90, earning the year title and trophy of MasterChef Australia, and the related prize and all the amazing career opportunities that are now opened to her.
Worth noting that the judges, who are top Australian Chefs, were blown away with what had scared Larissa enough to consider dropping out; that same which has made her win the top rank!
A great inspiring reminder for all of us, and the millions of viewers who witnessed it, to not give up when the difficulty feels "too much", for it is in those experiences that we get pushed to give our very best, explore ourselves beyond our self-limitations, and manifest the best of who we are.
Larissa just proved it to herself and all of us, taking that prestigious trophy home because of the most difficult challenge she overcame, not only successfully but... deliciously!
In fact, Larissa took the title, a Holden Equinox, and the boasting rights, and also a $250,000 cheque to launch her food dream and a contract with Delicious Magazine for a monthly column.
Let's hear what Larissa had to say about that all. “MasterChef isn’t just a cooking show, it’s a lifestyle change. To think that I was just an ordinary girl living an ordinary life in a small town, and now when I look into the mirror, I almost can’t recognize myself," she revealed to Delicious Magazine.
She went on, “When I applied for MasterChef, never in a million years did I think I would grow so much. The grand finale was the biggest test in the competition so far, but with the support of my family, Shannon Bennett and the judges, I honestly feel like I could conquer anything. I’m so excited to see what lies ahead.”