MasterChef Academy iPhone app gives you a taste of the culinary arts

Sep 21, 2010
Shine

Even if you didn’t apply for Season 2 of the Fox show “MasterChef,” you can still try to be one. On the heels of the first “MasterChef” season finale (22-year-old Whitney Miller nabbed the title) come the release of the jam-packed culinary app MasterChef Academy US for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. When I saw […]

Even if you didn’t apply for Season 2 of the Fox show “MasterChef,” you can still try to be one. On the heels of the first “MasterChef” season finale (22-year-old Whitney Miller nabbed the title) come the release of the jam-packed culinary app MasterChef Academy US for iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad.

When I saw MasterChef’s $4.99 price point, I was skeptical that an app based on a television show deserved my $5, so I was shocked at how impressive the app actually is. I love that the powers behind MasterChef planned for this app by producing more than 150 minutes of exclusive video featuring Season 1 MasterChef contestants, along with four-star chef and show judge Graham Elliot.

The app is broken into a tutorial section, which features videos on basic things such as selecting a knife or choosing an oil, as well as harder things, like how to bone a chicken or make a hollandaise sauce. After you’ve learned what you can from the MasterChef Academy classes, you can put your knowledge to work by answering the 300 “Master Class Pressure Test” questions. Passing the tests will unlock badges, as well as secret hidden videos that feature more tips and tricks. In addition to the tutorials, MasterChef Academy also features 50 recipes; nine from Season 1 and 41 developed specifically for the app.

The quality of video is outstanding, but each video has to be downloaded individually—a good idea in theory, but not great in practice. You can only download one clip at a time, and I didn’t see quick speeds over 3G. Aside from this issue and what seems to be a lack of proofreading in the app text (typos are abundant), I don’t have many complaints about MasterChef Academy US’s actual features or content. I’m looking forward to brushing up on my cooking skills — and maybe learning something new as well.

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They may not be Michelin stars, but the vast amount of app-exclusive contents earns MasterChef Academy five stars from this reviewer.

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