Nikita Pathakji, 25, won MasterChef: The Professionals 2022 after an exciting final. The native American compatriot took first place after impressing the judges with creative dishes, beating out Charlie Jeffreys and Sagar Massey.
Speaking to the BBC after her win, Ms Pathakji said: “This is incredible and I can’t put it into words. It surpasses every achievement of my life. I don’t know how I’m going to top this. This is the pinnacle, I think I can have reached!”
Derby-born Nikita entered the competition with 31 other professional chefs and cooked her way to the top after six weeks of increasingly demanding challenges, according to a BBC report.
The team of judges included Michelin-starred Marcus Wareing, acclaimed chef Anna Haugh and seasoned MasterChef judge Gregg.
Speaking of Ms Pathakji’s talent, Marcus Wareing commented, “She’s a chef who has grown right before our eyes. Her food is sublime and she always comes with a great twist.”
Her winning menu consisted of salted sea bass in a citrus dressing, smoked eggplant puree, spicy red pepper puree with pomegranate, preserved lemon, parsley oil and a side of eggplant chips.
Ms Pathakji, who now lives in Clapham, London, with her mother, stepfather, sister and Dexter the dog, shared the news on Instagram. ! Thank you everyone for all the messages, I am just completely blown away and so incredibly grateful!!!! So happy. Thank you, thank you, thank you @masterchefuk.”
She also talked about her time in the competition, Nikita told the BBC, MasterChef is always something I’ve thought about but was never ready for. My family always wanted me to do it, especially mom. So I partially went in to get her off my case! I decided this was the year because I’m now in a restaurant environment where I feel very comfortable and confident… but that’s dangerous! It was time to push myself even further. The Chef’s Table was the most intimidating moment of the match. Cooking for that room of people was such a huge challenge. I felt like I needed a shot at something strong before I went out to get their feedback. But it was also an amazing experience, and that it was hosted at the hotel where I first came into this industry was completely incredible.”
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