MasterChef Australia Top 24 contestant Ashley McConnell.
MasterChef Australia Top 24 contestant Ashley McConnell. Channel 10

First cook exits MasterChef Australia's Top 24

RAVIOLI proved to be the undoing of MasterChef contestant Ashley McConnell.

The Western Australian software salesman was the first home cook eliminated from the reality cooking show's Top 24 tonight.

"I didn't want to be the first to go, no one does," he told APN.

"It's an unfortunate position to be in, but just getting into the Top 24 was awesome."

McConnell was up against mum-of-three Theresa Visintin and golfer Charlie Sartori in a pressure test where they were asked to showcase a randomly chosen ingredient.

He chose to use his key ingredient of mushrooms in a ravioli.

"As soon as I saw them, I thought I could at least try to redeem myself from the ravioli I made in Billie's mystery box (on Wednesday)," he said.

But a last-minute decision to fry his delicate pasta in a hot pan sealed his fate.

"There was so much pressure, especially being the first elimination, I just wasn't thinking straight," he said.

The 29-year-old quit his job to go on MasterChef, but luckily has been able to return to work while he continues to pursue his food dream.

"I had to go back and grovel for my job," he laughed.

"My friends and I are in talks to do pop ups (restaurants) or a market stall.

"I will also be launching my food blog in the coming weeks."

Despite his early exit, McConnell would recommend the show to any keen cooks watching at home.

"I applied the last night of applications and it got me on the show, so just fill out the form and do it," he said.

MasterChef Australia continues on Sunday at 7.30pm on Channel 10.