Copyright 2008 Kharen Hill / FOX
Hot-tempered super chef Gordon Ramsay mentors and judges a diverse group of home cooks competing for a quarter of a million dollars when "MasterChef" premieres tonight at 9 p.m. on FOX.
The new show puts its contestants through the paces with a series of challenges designed to test their palate, food knowledge, passion and culinary skills both inside and outside the kitchen.
They'll be asked to do everything from slicing and dicing a truckload of onions, to creating gourmet dishes from boxes full of random ingredients, to providing an all-American send-off meal for hundreds of U.S. Marines, to catering a high-end wedding.
And in addition to scoring $250,000, the winner of the first-ever "MasterChef" will also get to publish his or her own cookbook.
Joining Ramsay on the judging panel are restaurateur and wine maker Joe Bastianich, owner of some of the most-celebrated Italian restaurants across the country; and Graham Elliot Bowles, the youngest four-star chef in the U.S. and mastermind behind Chicago's first "bistronomic" restaurant.