Ross Burgess from TV's MasterChef – a thank-you message to Moray
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Moray's Ross Burgess might no longer be in MasterChef: The Professionals but he's earned the respect of millions of TV viewers.
After winning his heat on the BBC1 show on Wednesday night, the former Elgin Academy pupil narrowly missed out in last night's quarter final.
But the modest 31-year-old, who moved from Edinburgh to work at Gordonstoun School a fortnight ago, has certainly managed to prove just how good he is.
He also has a thank-you for all the local support he's received.
Speaking today, Ross said: "It's been overwhelming.
"I think that coming back home to Moray where my family and a lot of my friends are helped with that.
"My phone has been red hot for the past couple of days.
"I'd like to thank everyone for their messages."
Ross was picked as a MasterChef contestant way back in February.
He was allowed to tell his fiancée, Amy, and his mum that he was going to be on the show, which was filmed during the summer.
But apart from that he had to stay quiet.
Even when the public announcement came three weeks ago that he was in the line-up he still couldn't let anyone know how he'd got on.
Ross, who studied cookery at Moray College, said: "It was really difficult because loads of people were asking.
"But, thankfully, they understood I couldn't say, and they just wished me well."
Ross reveals that the contestants don't get to meet the show's host Gregg Wallace and the two judges Monica Galetti and Marcus Wareing until the moment they walk onto the film set.
He said: "The door opens and you walk to the bench where you'll be cooking.
"I tell you that walk feels like a million miles.
"It's a feeling of complete fear.
"Not only are you cooking in front of two of the very best chefs in the country, you're also cooking in front of the millions of people at home.
"I've watched MasterChef since it began all those years ago and during that time I've seen top chefs go to complete pieces under the pressure.
"You really don't know what you're about to be asked to do or what ingredients you're going to be confronted with – will it be something you've ever cooked with, or even heard of, before?
"So it was a massive relief when I recognised everything on the tray."
Ross was also at the heart of one of MasterChef's best ever moments.
One task on Wednesday night required the contestants to prepare a signature dish.
Ross' choice of a sirloin of Aberdeen Angus spoke of his roots, while his method for making an oyster sauce used a technique he'd learned during his years of working in Australia.
After the Michelin-starred chef Marcus Wareing labelled the dish a "triumph", Ross found it hard to keep his emotions in check.
He said: "The only people to have tasted it before were Amy and myself.
"I'd had weeks and weeks of practising it and worrying if it was really good enough.
"I think it was just relief.
"Being on the show is just something I will never forget for as long as I live.
"I'm just glad I was able to give a good account of myself and show that I know my way around a kitchen."