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Santa Fe chef wins top prize on ‘Chopped’

Santacafe chef Fernando Ruiz competed in Food Network's "Chopped." He won the competition.

Santacaf√© chef Fernando Ruiz competed in Food Network’s “Chopped.” He won the competition.

And then there was one.

The last man standing in Tuesday night’s episode of “Chopped” was Santacaf√© executive chef Fernando Ruiz.

Ruiz filmed the show back in June in New York City.

“Chopped,” hosted by Ted Allen, is in its eighth season on Food Network.

The series pits four chefs against one another as they compete for a chance to win $10,000.

After the three courses, Ruiz wowed the judges with his Southwestern flair on the final two challenges.

Ruiz has been the chef at Santacafé for four years.

He fell in love with cooking while watching his mother and grandmother in the kitchen. During the episode, he told the judges that he also learned to cook with expired food items while in prison.

After winning the $10,000, Ruiz says it was all for his family.

“I’m hoping to put a down payment on a house,” he says.

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