Naturally laid-back, Ralph has hinted that he's rattled by Jamie Oliver. Hailing from WA, this auditor has a particular fondness for Italian cuisine and is excited to showcase his Zimbabwean food, culture, and traditions to the judges. The kitchen serves as Ralph's artistic escape from the shackles of work, but the question remains whether he can control his jitters long enough to impress Jamie with more than just his sings.
Watch Below: MasterChef 2023 | Ralph serves pasta to Jamie Oliver
Alice has an academic background, but she's stepping into the kitchen to showcase her creativity and impress the renowned Jamie Oliver. With a Harvard degree and a Master's from Stanford, this multilingual genius is ready to pursue her lifelong ambition to make a mark in the culinary industry as a cook, writer, and entrepreneur.
Watch Below: MasterChef 2023 | Alice gets creative in the kitchen
Larissa's passion for cooking is deeply rooted in her Ukrainian and Russian heritage, with her biggest inspiration being her babushka, who instilled in her a love for traditional cooking. Her family's history is a fusion of cultures, with three of her grandparents settling in the Xinjiang region of China after fleeing their homeland during the Russian Revolution. This cultural diversity has shaped Larissa's cooking style, which is a unique blend of flavours from around the world. Her time spent in the USA and South Korea has further enriched her culinary skills and aspirations to someday open a small cooking school and write about food and culture.
Larissa's cooking philosophy is centred around generosity and abundance, reflecting her urban-farm lifestyle in Adelaide, where she lives with her husband, twin boys, and cherished heritage chickens.
Watch Below: MasterChef 2023: Larissa Plates Up A Melting Pot Of Cultures.
The MasterChef kitchen will be graced by the presence of a familiar face in 2023 as former boilermaker Brent Draper makes a comeback for a second attempt at the title, bringing more surprises to the table.
After withdrawing from the Season 13 (2021) competition to prioritize his mental health, Brent has since been devoted to improving his and his family's lives. He fulfilled his dream of travelling around Australia with his wife and son in a bus that he bought and renovated, relishing the simple yet fulfilling life they led, meeting new people, cooking, and making memories.
Brent's mental health journey has been a source of inspiration for him, and he remains determined to motivate others to confront their problems head-on, demonstrating that challenging times can lead to growth and strength. Brent has prepared himself for the competition's obstacles, armed with a toolkit that includes exercise, meditation, and mantras. While winning the trophy is undoubtedly a goal, his ultimate motivation is to make his wife and son proud!
Watch Below: MasterChef 2023 | A Season Full Of Surprises? You Brent Believe!
Antonio Cruz Vaamonde, originally from Caracas, Venezuela, migrated to Australia in 2015 in search of a better life. His grandmother, whom he affectionately referred to as 'Mamucha', played a significant role in his decision to move and was his biggest supporter. She often encouraged him to apply for MasterChef, which he has now done. In the kitchen, Antonio excels in both sweet and savoury dishes, with a particular affinity for desserts, pastries, and confectioneries. He is also well-versed in Italian and Asian cuisine, adept at barbecuing techniques, and takes pride in highlighting his South American culinary heritage.
Cath Collins has harboured a long-standing aspiration to participate in MasterChef, fueled by her admiration for Julie Goodwin's comeback in the previous season. Growing up in a large Australian family with ten siblings, Cath is a proud mother of two adult daughters and was inspired to step up her cooking when her girls were born, focusing on making delicious food that nourished and excited them. Aside from her culinary pursuits, Cath finds solace in music and art, and maintains an active lifestyle, having completed half marathons and triathlons. Armed with a wealth of life experience, a cheerful demeanour, and unwavering persistence, Cath is ready to embrace the challenge and pursue her dreams in the competition.
Declan Cleary's passion for cooking arose from his desire to make sure that every meal he prepares is full of excitement and flavour. Despite being one of the younger contestants in the competition, at the age of 24, Declan should not be underestimated. As a qualified carpenter who runs his own business, he is no stranger to hard work and is willing to give his all in the competition. Declan's love for fish and seafood makes them a preferred choice in his cooking, and he is confident in his savoury culinary skills. While he may struggle with creating intricate desserts, he is determined not to let the pressure of the MasterChef kitchen get to him.
Grace Jupp, a 24-year-old with many roles, is a wife, step-mother, business owner, University graduate, cooking enthusiast, and a hopeful participant in the 2023 MasterChef competition. Raised in Queensland after being born in Victoria, Grace has always been passionate about cooking, spending countless hours in the kitchen with her mother and Baba. She is motivated by her family's rich Croatian heritage and draws inspiration from her husband, a former chef who has introduced her to new cuisines, flavours, and cooking techniques. Grace enjoys trying out new restaurants and creating memories through food. She currently co-owns an olive oil company with her husband in Victoria's Mornington Peninsula.
To Jessica Perri, food represents more than just nourishment. It embodies love, passion, comfort, tradition, education, and so much more. Her two Nonnas have been her greatest inspiration in the kitchen, teaching her how to cook since the age of three. Rather than following recipes, they showed her the "alla buona" method of cooking - effortless and with minimal fuss. It was only after one of her Nonnas passed away that Jessica realized the gift and responsibility she had inherited to carry on the family legacy through food. She takes this task seriously. Despite working in a scientific field and being a busy mother, Jessica yearns for a creative outlet and finds solace in the kitchen.
Malissa Fedele, a clinical nutritionist, understands the vital role of good food in promoting good health. Coming from an Italian family, she also believes that food plays a crucial role in creating unforgettable memories. Hailing from Adelaide, Malissa was exposed to the world of food from an early age thanks to her big, boisterous family. Her parents owned a fruit and vegetable store where she and her siblings worked, and both her Nonnas and her mother encouraged her to explore the culinary arts. Food is a fundamental aspect of her work too. Malissa runs a clinical practice that specializes in women's health, offering nutritional consultations to promote healthy lifestyles and dietary choices that support women's health and overall well-being.
Phil Conway has cherished memories of cooking with his nan and making her famous apple tarts while growing up in Galway, Ireland. After relocating to Melbourne 12 years ago, he developed an interest in food, and he and his wife, who has Italian roots, regularly dine out, sharing a deep love for Italian cuisine. Phil turned his passion for fitness into a career, but the pandemic halted his work with clients. Instead, he spent his time cooking and rediscovered his love for being in the kitchen, which provided him with clarity about his future. In 2022, Phil ventured to the Veneto wine region in Italy for a month to participate in the wine harvest and learn traditional recipes, including the art of making pasta and sauces.
Rhiannon Anderson is determined to seize the moment. With her children and stepchildren now grown, she aims to show them that anything is achievable, regardless of age. Undoubtedly, Rhiannon's greatest inspiration in life was her mother, who tragically passed away from ovarian cancer in 2021. Her mother became a chef when Rhiannon was just 11 years old and taught her everything she knows about cooking. She urged Rhiannon to apply for MasterChef, making her selection as one of the Top 18 contestants even more meaningful. Rhiannon is a skilled water-skier and currently holds the title of the 2022 national women's 45+ champion, imbuing her with an unyielding competitive spirit.
Robbie Cooper, a proud Iwaidja man, sees entering the MasterChef competition as an opportunity not only to showcase his food but also his rich culture and heritage. Originally from Darwin, Robbie is known for his skills as an accomplished AFL and rugby league player and now works as a youth support worker in a supported bail program. Like many Aboriginal families in the Northern Territory, Robbie's ancestry incorporates Asian heritage from Malaysia, Indonesia, and the Philippines, as well as Torres Strait Islander. He describes his cooking style as "Aboriginal Asian fusion" and is equally comfortable cooking on country as he is creating modern Australian cuisine. As the oldest contestant in the competition, Robbie hopes to share his wisdom and experience as an Uncle to the group.
Rue Mupedzi's journey to the MasterChef kitchen began with her first fine-dining experience in Sydney in 2014. In 2021, Rue decided to take a break from her role as an Oral Health Therapist to follow her passion for baking and launched a macaron business. Her persistence paid off after ten months of trial and error, perfecting her recipe. Originally from Zimbabwe, Rue moved to Australia with her family when she was 15. In her culture, food is a unifying force. Rue's mother taught her the basics of cooking, and she has expanded her skills by studying a variety of cookbooks. Rue is a calm and collected presence in the kitchen and believes she can work well under pressure. She is eager to learn and grow during her time on MasterChef.
Theo Loizou, a former sparky, has found his true passion in baking. After spending 12 years in his trade, Theo decided to move to France in 2019 to work in a Parisian bakery, despite not speaking the language. He planned to stay for only six months, but ended up staying for three years after meeting his partner. During his time in France, he honed his baking skills before eventually relocating back to Melbourne. Theo has a strong connection to the food and culture of his Greek and Cypriot ancestry, having learned from both his parents and grandparents in the kitchen. He is a confident cook who trusts his intuition and prefers to cook by feel rather than follow a recipe. Theo plans to showcase his bread-making skills and draw on his Greek heritage as much as possible in the MasterChef kitchen.
If Adi Nevgi hadn't been required to work full-time at a busy Melbourne hospital during the global pandemic, she might have entered the MasterChef competition much earlier. Despite being mostly self-taught by reading cookbooks, browsing cooking websites, and watching cooking shows, her love for cooking has flourished as she has explored, trained and refined her taste buds by visiting 55 different countries. Adi is confident that her resolute and composed character will keep her cooking, although she admits that baking is not her forte due to her inclination towards savoury dishes.
Growing up watching MasterChef with her mum, this competition holds a special place in Amy's heart. Over the years, she has drawn inspiration from the show's amateur chefs and tried to replicate their recipes. Finally, Amy has the opportunity to participate in the competition, where she hopes to expand her knowledge, develop her skills, and inspire others while wearing her MasterChef apron. Amy's love for anchovies is well-known, and she is enthusiastic about incorporating flavours from her recent trips to Turkey and Vietnam into her dishes.
Although Andrea Puglisi has spent the last decade in Melbourne and Perth, he was born and raised in Turin, northern Italy, and his cooking style remains deeply rooted in his Italian heritage. Growing up in a large family with five siblings, Andrea's household was always bustling with activity, especially in the kitchen. With his innate culinary instincts, Andrea excels in creating bold and flavorful dishes, but he aspires to refine his dessert-making abilities. Participating in the competition is an opportunity for Andrea to challenge himself and test his limits.