Gordon Ramsay Gordon Ramsay

We asked MasterChef judge and executive producer Gordon Ramsay to give us a taste of what's on the menu for Season 2 of the American Idol-esque talent competition for home cooks with aspirations of going pro. Let's dig in!

TV Guide Magazine: What are you looking for in a MasterChef?
It's about trying to find that one diamond in the rough — someone who has absolute passion and a desire to change their life and become immersed in food rather than what they are currently doing.

TV Guide Magazine: During auditions, you and fellow judges Joe Bastianich and Graham Elliot ate the food of 100 different hopefuls. Your poor taste buds!
I sampled some of the most disgusting dishes and some of the most brilliant. I had alligator stew — can you imagine? Let's just say I always kept Pepto-Bismol within reach.

TV Guide Magazine: Can you tell us what's in store for the ones who make it to the next round?
We ask them to cook for about 250 screaming kids. They had to make a burger and fries without using beef or potatoes. Wait till you see what they came up with. That day was really fun.

TV Guide Magazine: Your softer side is on display more here than on Hell's Kitchen (which returns July 19). Why?
I would never go in and bark out orders at an amateur — that wouldn't be fair.

TV Guide Magazine: But you do make them sweat, like when they have to cook for the judges' mothers...
They were excited, but bloody hell, they were intimidated. Our mums taught us so much. If you need to know where I get my scowl from — look no further!

MasterChef premieres Monday at 8/7c on Fox.

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