Pressure cooking for grand final

MasterChef judge Gary Mehigan promises the final few days of the 2014 series won't disappoint, with plenty of twists, turns and surprise visits from celebrity chefs to keep the contestants and viewers on their toes.

Last night, contestants Brent Owens, Emelia Jackson and Laura Cassai were named the final three and now they will face off for the biggest prize in the show's history.

"For us, it's all about coming up with a finale week and a final few days that will blow the contestants away and the people that are watching. We always have a trick up our sleeves," Mehigan told AAA.

"I'm not going to give too much away but there's more to come. We certainly put a lot of effort into the finale and the semifinal in particular to make sure everyone is blown away and that there's something to look forward to."

Mehigan and fellow judges Matt Preston and George Calombaris have repeatedly praised the 2014 contestants for being the best in the show's history, raising the bar with their knowledge and technical abilities.

"This season has been stand-out, absolutely stand-out. It's been our mission to find the best amateur cook in the country, that's always been what MasterChef is about, and I think we've delivered. It's undeniable when we get to the final week and see the kind of food they're putting up - everybody is impressed."

In terms of what it will take to win the coveted MasterChef 2014 title and the $250,000 cash, publishing deal, Alfa Romeo Giulietta and prestigious work- experience opportunities that come along with it, Mehigan, right, believes it's all about timing.

"It's a hell of a journey. They've survived the competition so far and they have to be absolutely on their game, they have to be at the peak of their so-called cooking fitness to get through this," he said.

"It's about timing I think, it's a bit like the Commonwealth Games or the Olympics - you train for years and then it's all about that 10 seconds that you run the 100m.

"It's whether or not they can engage their brain, bring forth their creativity and get all their ducks in a row and see whether they can deliver. It's a competition and if they're not up to speed on the day they're not going to win."

The MasterChef Australia grand final airs at 7.30pm on Monday on Ten.

The West Australian

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