Michael Lavine/FOX
June 26, 2012 09:10 AM

On Monday night the final 14 contestants of MasterChef season 3 faced another team challenge – sweating it out in their first professional kitchen!

The plan was to execute 130 traditional American breakfast dishes in 90 minutes. It doesn’t sound too difficult, but our inexperienced home cooks sadly learned otherwise. Working in a busy kitchen is the ultimate test of teamwork. You either have the ability to perform as a unit or you don’t. Individual culinary talent takes a back seat here – customers will never taste the food if it doesn’t make it out the door.

Felix’s lackluster performance was a huge surprise to me, and probably to Christine as well. I completely understood why Felix was chosen as an expeditor – she is a runner and server in a Los Angeles restaurant! It is her job to interact with an expediter every single day! How she could be so unaware of what this role requires? Christine did a decent job leading her team, but honestly, about five minutes in, I would have pulled Felix off that line and replaced her with Becky.

Monti was also full of surprises – the good, the bad and the ugly. I loved how she was able to immediately take control of the team, focus on expediting and really get the job done. What didn’t thrill me was her drill-sergeant approach right off the bat. Sure, there is yelling to some degree in every kitchen – it’s a pressure-filled, time-sensitive situation (not to mention this is one of the hottest places on earth) – but this attitude doesn’t foster the unity needed for a successful night on the line. Both she and Josh losing their cool was completely inappropriate in a professional setting, and should have never happened.

The bromance continues between Ryan and Tali as they find themselves the last two standing at the end of another dreaded pressure test. Ryan did the right thing by stepping down, and proved to be the better man – but I am not so sure we were left with the better chef.

Another dessert challenge is in store for Tuesday night’s episode (9 p.m. ET) of MasterChef, and as the pressure mounts, new and rather unexpected rivalries emerge among the ladies. Thanks for reading!

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