He is the little big Masterchef man everyone loves to love. t2 caught up with top chef and Junior Masterchef Australia (airs Monday to Friday at 9pm on STAR World) judge George Calombaris in an email chat.
You are now judging Junior Masterchef Australia after being a judge in the previous editions that featured adults. How exciting has it been judging kids?
I love kids! I am a true believer that if we educate kids in food, it will put them in great stead for their adult life and make them healthier in their mind, body and soul.
What do you have to keep in mind while judging kids in a competitive format?
I treat them like I would an adult. I like to teach them it’s okay not to win and it’s about trying your best. It’s about the experience — not the win. It’s about learning about the most important thing — which is food — and having fun!
What has your favourite moment on the Masterchef journey been so far?
I love all moments with the kids. Seeing them plate up amazing food just makes me so happy for them.
|‘I love Alvin’s (Quah) Drunken and Bruised Chicken from Season 2. Amazing dish
and so delicious!’
|‘I love all moments with the kids.... It’s about the experience — not the win. It’s about learning about the most important thing — which is food — and having fun!’
If you were a participant on the show, which is that one dish you would cook to guarantee you the Masterchef crown?
I would only cook what I would eat and that which represents me and who I am.
And what is that one dish you would never cook?
Hmm, not sure. That’s a hard one as I like everything and want to try everything. I am a chef and I never stop learning.
Do you like Indian food?
I love all the flat breads. Yum!
Who is your favourite Masterchef co-judge?
Both Matt (Preston) and Gary (Mehigan) are my friends. I have known them both for years prior to the show and I guess that’s why we have so much fun on the show.
Is there any dish cooked by any participant on Masterchef that you would have personally loved to cook in your kitchen?
I love Alvin’s (Quah) Drunken and Bruised Chicken from Season 2. Amazing dish and so delicious!