Celebrity MasterChef crowns its winner after emotional final

Actor John Partridge saw off fierce competition from former Made in Chelsea star Spencer Matthews and presenter Martin Bayfield

John Partridge, Celebrity Masterchef winner (BBC, KB)

Celebrity MasterChef drew to a close tonight, and after six weeks of gruelling challenges, former EastEnders star John Partridge was crowned the winner.

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The 47-year-old beat 19 other celebrities to win the esteemed trophy, presented to him by MasterChef mainstays, John Torode and Gregg Wallace.

Thrilled about taking the win, Partridge said, “It has been one of the best experiences of my life; I thought was going to be all about cooking and about food and it ended up being so much more than that. I cooked to remember. To remind myself of who I am, where I’m from and what I can still be.

“And now to have actually won… it just feels really, really good. It’s been an absolute joy from beginning to end; getting to know myself, remembering my childhood and the things that I loved.”

The intense finale saw Partridge, alongside fellow finalists Spencer Matthews and Martin Bayfield, reflect upon the last six weeks of the competition and draw upon their skills to cook to the highest standard in a last-bid attempt to impress the judges.

The final challenges included cooking an Afternoon Tea and producing a two-course menu for the infamous restaurant critics before taking on the legendary Chef’s Table – where the hopefuls had to present a three course meal in two and a half hours.

Celebrity Masterchef S13 Trophy (BBC, KB)

Partridge’s winning menu, neatly named ‘There’s No Taste Like Home’ consisted of pan-fried scallops on black pudding as a starter, a main of lamb and potato Lancashire hotpot, and an egg custard tart with nutmeg for dessert.

Speaking about his final menu, he explained: “It is a reflection of who I am, this is me on a plate and that’s really all I could do.”

“John along the way has thrilled me,” said Torode. “The guy draws on every bit of emotion to deliver the food he knows and loves to eat; It’s about him, there’s a story attached to it and you can taste it. Anybody who walks into a final, cooks food from his heart and makes us smile, is a worthy winner.”

Co-judge Wallace added, “John only cooks what he truly believes in, truly loves, and has got a bit of his history in it – do you know who else does that? The great chefs of the world – and that is why he is our MasterChef Champion.”

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until 00:00:01 on 16/05/2018 - Programme Name: Celebrity Masterchef S13 - TX: n/a - Episode: Press Release (No. Press Release) - Picture Shows: **STRICTLY EMBARGOED UNTIL 00:01 HRS ON WEDNESDAY 16TH MAY 2018** Spencer Matthews - (C) Shine TV - Photographer: Production
Spencer Matthews reportedly had cooking lessons (Shine, BBC)

Partridge’s win may come as a surprise to some viewers, with Spencer Matthews previously being a hot favourite to take the crown.

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The former Made In Chelsea star reportedly took private cooking lessons with Jean-Christophe Novelli to boost his chances of winning.