Local teen takes on Gordon Ramsay

// by Virginia Chamlee

14-year-old Camson Alevy, a Fleming Island native, has grown up cooking alongside his mom and dad. “I went from cooking eggs and bacon, to cooking eggs in a basket, to cooking poached eggs,” he says. Knowing his way around a kitchen has certainly paid off. After attending an open casting call, Alevy was selected for the sixth season of Masterchef Jr., the Gordon Ramsay-helmed FOX cooking show that pits child and teen chefs against one another.

Though most teenagers might be nervous about cooking in front of any adult (let alone a celebrity chef, under the hot lights of a television set), Alevy wasn’t fazed. “It wasn’t really that nerve-wracking. It was just super exciting. I think I took the fear of it and turned it into excitement. The kitchen’s beautiful, and it’s fun to be cooking with all of your friends.”

And Gordon Ramsay? Not actually a bully, says Alevy—at least, not with kids. “It was kind of amazing when he first came out to meet us. It was this weird feeling of, ‘Oh my gosh, Gordon Ramsay is ten feet in front of me.’ But he’s a bit more gentle with kids than he might be on other shows—he focuses on the highs, rather than the lows.”

Though Masterchef Jr. is technically a competition, Alevy says that all of the contestants became fast friends, keeping in touch via a group chat on Instagram and visiting one another after filming wrapped. “I don’t know too many other kids who like the foods I like,” he notes.

Back at home, the teen gourmand loves to dine out at area restaurants. “My favorite is Moxie,” he says. “They have these donuts and they put them in this bag, and shake it with cinnamon and sugar, and it’s amazing.”

But despite being a self-professed “big time foodie,” Alevy isn’t above eating cafeteria food. And while he indulges in the occasional PB&J, his favorite foods are seafood, especially crab and raw oysters, and anything spicy. “He prides himself on his ability to eat the spiciest things,” jokes his mom, Susan.

As for how far he advances on the show, well, those who are curious will have to watch to find out. The first episode of Masterchef Jr. airs March 2 at 8 PM on FOX.