Page last updated at 19:58 GMT, Friday, 10 July 2009 20:58 UK

Middlemiss wins Masterchef title

Jayne Middlemiss
Jayne Middlesmiss admitted she had been "incredibly nervous"

TV presenter Jayne Middlemiss has been named the winner of this year's Celebrity Masterchef.

The 38-year-old beat Olympic athlete Iwan Thomas and former Coronation Street actress Wendi Peters.

She said taking part in the BBC One show was "a truly incredible experience" and winning had helped her realise her "passion for cooking".

Judge John Torode said: "Jayne is a natural cook. She has complete understanding of modern food."

Torode, who is a chef himself and runs a restaurant in London, added: "Jayne really pulled it out of the bag and is a deserving winner."

'Culinary journey'

Fellow judge Gregg Wallace said: "Jayne truly understands what it takes to make great food."

After hearing the news, Middlesmiss, a former presenter of Top Of The Pops, said: "It's so exciting to be crowned MasterChef Champion. I hope this is just the start of my culinary journey."

Seared scallops on apple puree with ground walnut sauce and fresh herbs
Pan fried veal on a bed of baby red chard with truffle potatoes and a veal jus
Lavender pana cotta with crystallised violets

The finals, which saw the trio take part in a series of challenges to test their competence in the kitchen, kicked off on Wednesday.

Thomas said participating in the competition had been one of the "toughest things" he had ever done.

Middlemiss, who had battled nerves throughout the competition, admitted beforehand she was "very nervous".

Thursday's episode saw the celebrities fly to Morocco, where they were asked to cater at one of the country's most exclusive hotels, using only open fires and clay ovens.

Back in London they had to cook for a group of Michelin-starred chefs, including Michel Roux.

But for the grand final, the celebrities were left to cook for the show's two booming, intimidating judges.

Middlemiss prepared seared scallops as part of her winning menu accompanied by a dessert of lavender pana cotta with crystallised violets.

Last year, former Atomic Kitten star Liz McClarnon was named the Celebrity Masterchef champion.

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