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MY Kitchen Rules adds some spice to the for­mat but this won’t spoil the show’s rich flavour, says host Pete Evans.

Chan­nel 7’s hit re­al­ity cook­ing se­ries My Kitchen Rules re­turns on Mon­day with a few new twists and turns.

Evans says the se­ries re­mains true to its for­mat, which is about ama­teur chefs cook­ing ama­teur meals.

How­ever, there are some slight vari­a­tions, in­clud­ing gate­crash­ers and blind tast­ings.

‘‘Hopefully we can do what we did last time and cre­ate a show that ev­ery­one likes to watch,’’ says Evans.

‘‘There are go­ing to be gate­crash­ers and I can’t elab­o­rate on what that means. The pro­duc­ers are fully aware of what the au­di­ence loves and we are giv­ing them more of that.

‘‘But we are still keep­ing to the orig­i­nal for­mula and keep­ing the com­mon thread run­ning through­out.’’

Evans and French­man Manu Feildel re­turn to host and judge the home­cook­ing bat­tle.

Ir­ish chef Colin Fass­nidge, who once worked un­der Gor­don Ram­say, joins Guy Grossi, Karen Martini and Liz Egan as a guest judge.

Twelve cou­ples, split into two groups of six, will con­test the se­ries.

The teams in­clude a cou­ple of former beauty queens, a brother and sis­ter com­bi­na­tion, high school friends, cousins, per­sonal train­ers and a fa­ther and son duo.

The win­ners take home $250,000 in prize­money.

MKR started in 2010 and last year av­er­aged 1.8 mil­lion view­ers across 37 episodes. About 2.89 mil­lion peo­ple watched South Aus­tralia’s Leigh Sex­ton and Jen­nifer Evans win the ti­tle.

The win was not with­out con­tro­versy. Af­ter the se­ries ended, view­ers bom­barded so­cial me­dia to sup­port run­ners-up Nic Maz­zone and Rocco La Bella af­ter it ap­peared dur­ing the fi­nal episode that they were likely to win.

Evans had to turn to Face­book to ex­plain the win­ner’s de­ci­sion and that a whole day’s film­ing had been re­duced to two hours.

‘‘If they (the pro­duc­ers) gave away who was go­ing to win af­ter the first course then it would be a one-horse race and peo­ple would switch off,’’ Evans says.

‘‘It’s a very fine line but at the end of the day, and that’s why I went on Face­book, the team that cooked the best food that day, won the com­pe­ti­tion.

‘‘I wouldn’t do the show if it was rigged in any way, shape or form.’’

Mon­days, 7.30pm, Seven, Prime7

Manu Feildel and Pete Evans.

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