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In L.A., our 11 up-and-coming chefs continue to sizzle and bake at Sona restaurant. But the unveiling of the mystery "proteins" really gets them going: whole ducks, prawns with heads, and spicy sausage. …

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Episode 3 Journal

What did you think of today's challenge?

Today's challenge was an eye opener. Really grasping the concept and logistics of the show was a bit of an obstacle at first, but now that I have gotten my feet wet I feel I am more in control.

What did you think of today's challenge?

Tough! I hope the pressure comes across to the audience — because I sure felt it.

What did you prepare today?

1) One poached egg with avocado, seared shallots, and tomatoes. 2) Prawns poached with Kaffir lime leaves and pepper served with sausage ratatouille and purple rice risotto.

How do you think you did? Is there anything you wish you'd done better?

I feel I did OK. I wish I had started my rice sooner and spent more time plating.

What was the highlight of the day's events?

Getting to meet the celebrity chefs — how cool. A gift from Ming — also very cool.

Are there any lessons you took away from today?

Look around me more, try to pick up on what others are doing — with time restraints, it's hard.

What was the most constructive or interesting piece of feedback you heard from the judges?

Take it easy on the pepper — my grind may have been too coarse, endangering the seasonings.

How do you think you are doing in relation to your fellow competitors?

Great — I'm a people person; nobody is unbearable yet.

Who do you think is faring the best and why?

Katsuji — he has quite a bit of talent. I hope the shortcomings in his personality catch up with him somewhere in this competition.

What do you think your fellow competitors think of you?

Laid back, friendly — hard to say. I try not to give too much away.