Exclusive: "Big Ceej" tells us who he think may win and why Kristen's loss was "a joke."

on Jan 23, 2013 - The Dish

Now you're in Save a Chef going against Kuniko, and if you win, the rest of the gang. What is your battle plan?
My battle plan is to engage my fans, respond to them and be gracious. I also know I must be persistent as my fans are my sole way in.

Kuniko's got quite the "Army." Who's the captain and some generals of the CJ Army?
I don't have a captain. I have people that have organically come out of the woodwork that want me to win. It's kind of amazing.

Was showing how improved of a chef you've become since last time the biggest reason to return to the show?
The show is fun. It's crazy, it's annoying, it's mind-boggling. It's really hard and its a great test. I love challenges to death and coming back better was just icing on the cake.

If fans took anything away from your time on the show this season, what do you want it to be?
Don't go safe in team competitions.

Have the chefs as a whole in the competition gotten better since your original cast?
As a whole group chefs in this season were better. There was also a maturity aspect that was nicer. Everyone was a restaurant chef; there were no caterers or nutritionists or private chefs. It makes a difference.

Aside from your Save a Chef chances, who would you like to see take it all home if it's not you?
I think I'd like to see Brooke or Sheldon. I have become friends with both. Brooke is easily the most complete chef in the competition. I feel like Sheldon has something burning inside of him. I like that. We share that. He's gonna say something with food -- watch what happens