Entertainment & Arts

MasterChef: The Professionals winner 'working on Christmas Day'

Spoiler warning: This story reveals who wins

MasterChef: The Professionals finalists
Image caption Steven Lickley, Louisa Ellis and Craig Johnston made it to this year's final

Craig Johnston has become the youngest ever winner of BBC Two cookery show MasterChef: The Professionals.

Johnston, who comes from Slough and was 21 at the time of filming, cooked a "stunning" three-course meal in the final to take home the prize.

He works as a sous chef at The Royal Oak, a Michelin-starred gastropub in Maidenhead, Berkshire.

Johnston told the BBC that despite the win he will still be working on Christmas Day.

"It's a downside to some chef jobs, but you're going to brighten up someone's Christmas by making their life easier," he said.

Image caption Marcus Wareing, Gregg Wallace and Monica Galetti judge MasterChef: The Professionals

Monica Galetti, who judges the show with Gregg Wallace and Marcus Wareing, told the BBC: "To show that much skill at that age for a chef is a dream come true."

Johnston presented the judges with a torched mackerel starter, roast squab pigeon for the main course and sauterne and yoghurt mousse with crumble for dessert.

"That is just stunning," said Wareing. "It's just perfect. I am speechless."

Image caption Craig Johnston is the show's youngest ever winner

Wallace said Johnston "ticks every box", while Wareing added: "You don't come across cooks like this very often.

"We've just found a star of the future," he went on. "What a fabulous talent."

Johnston, who started out as a chef when he was 16, beat fellow finalists Louisa Ellis and Steven Lickley to become the programme's 11th champion.

The show, a spin-off from the main MasterChef series, has had 10 series but had two winners in 2012.


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