Benguet native wins first 'MasterChef Pinoy Edition'

by Reyma Buan-Deveza,

Posted at Feb 09 2013 01:41 PM | Updated as of Feb 11 2013 01:22 AM

MANILA (UPDATED) - Home cook JR Royol is the first "MasterChef Pinoy Edition" grand winner.

Royol won the TV reality cooking show on ABS-CBN after impressing 4 chef-judges and 2 guest-judges with his organic goose dish called "Chicken Bigorot."

"Ito po 'yung fusion ng origin ko, ng heritage ko. Bicolano po ang father, and ang mom ko is proud Igorota. 'Yung chicken, poached po siya with salted etag, and to put a twist of Bicol in it, gumamit po ako ng gata," Royol explained to the judges.

"Tino-torch po naman 'yung feathers, para magdagdaga ng extra depth and flavor doon sa broth niya. For the rice, I used heirloom rice and etag din," he said. 

Carla Marcaida won second place with her "Tuna Adobo and Dilaw na Kanin."

Third place went to Ivory Yat who cooked a "Palabok Finale."

Myra Santos placed fourth.

The 4 chef-judges of "MasterChef Pinoy Edition" were Ferns Arcama, JP Anglo, and Chef Laudico, and Judy Ann Santos.

The 2 guest-judges were Kris Aquino and Richard Gomez.

During the live cook off, the remaining three home cooks were given 30 minutes to make their signature MasterChef dish.

In the end, Royol topped the competition with a score of 96.1 points.

Commenting on Royol's dish, Aqunio said: "Hindi ako fan ng goose but I love yours, yung rice, yung layering ng flavors na ginawa mo at yung crunch [ng goose]. Nakaka-in love ka magluto. Yung smokiness...perfection."

Royol took home the P1 million cash prize, a culinary scholarship from the Center of Asian Culinary Studies, and a kitchen showcase from Fujidenzo.

"I feel so blessed and thank you so much. This is such an honor," he said after the winners were announced.

Royal fulfilled his dream of being the first Pinoy MasterChef, which will allow him to also realize his dream of marrying his girlfriend.

He also wants to use his cash prize to support his child with a former partner whom he has not seen in months.

Royol was born in Benguet province in northern Philippines. He is also a band vocalist.