Christina Tosi and Joe Bastianich also aged-up for a grandma-themed challenge.
You might expect a lot of things out of Gordon Ramsay when it comes to cooking competitions: harsh critiques, relentless insults, swearing. But as any fan of MasterChef Junior will tell you, the chef and TV host is a big old softie when it comes to kids. Sure, the young home cooks competing on the series are subject to his and the other judges' feedback, with no punches pulled on a bad dish. But unlike the adult version of the reality series, you can also expect Ramsay to dress up as an old woman.
On last Friday's episode, Ramsay donned a Mrs. Doubtfire costume for a grandmother-themed challenge."You look like Mrs. Doubtfire," one of the young chefs even exclaimed in a preview clip of the episode. Fellow co-judges Cristina Tosi and Joe Bastianich also got in on the fun, dressing as their own grandmothers. The cooks were then surprised by the introduction of each of their actual grandmothers and given the challenge of making a dish to impress them. The winner would receive a guaranteed spot in the finals while the other four chefs battle it out for a spot in the top three.
There's even more grandma-related fun as Gordon sits down to interview one of the granny judges, choosing, of course, the one who'd never seen him on TV.
It's not the first time the host and judges of MasterChef Junior have gone the extra mile to the delight of the kid cooks. This season alone, previous episodes have seen them dunked in giant milkshakes and glazed and sprinkled like doughnuts.
Perhaps most heartening in all of this is that kids still know who Mrs. Doubtfire is. The 1993 comedy of the same name starred the late Robin Williams as a divorced father and professional voice actor who disguises himself as an old woman in order to get hired as his kids' nanny. Considered at this point to be a classic, the film had many memorable food moments, including Doubtfire attempting to cook dinner only to get "hot flashes" when she lights her blouse on fire, passing off a French restaurant's dinner as her own cooking, pegging Pierce Brosnan—his ex-wife's smarmy new beau—with a lime, performing the Heimlich maneuver on said smarmy beau in the film's climax, and, of course, plopping her face into cake frosting as a makeshift mask when an unexpected visitor comes calling.
MasterChef Junior, currently in its sixth season, airs Friday nights at 8 p.m. on Fox.