As one of the youngest applicants Chef This year Eric Mao has most certainly given the competition all he has, and throughout it has managed to find a “shared bond” with one of the judges.
WATCH BELOW: MasterChef’s Eric Mao on What’s Next After Leaving the Show
One of two children born to his immigrant Chinese parents, Eric appeared on the show in hopes of sharing his passion for regional Chinese cuisine with Australia.
Talk with New idea, Eric reveals that while his time in the Chef the cooking was interrupted, he wanted to show how special and interesting chinese food is for all who watch at home.
âReal authentic regional Chinese food is something that is very underrated in Australia – or that you really don’t know – and I think that’s what I wanted to highlight on the show,â he says.
Born in Australia with a Chinese heritage, Eric talks about an “identity struggle” and how it helped him resonate with Judge Melissa Leong.
âWe kind of had that shared connection with the fact that we were both Chinese-Australians and we grew up in Australia and I think that identity struggle was something that we both had to go through,â the 21 years old – says old.
“We kind of had a connection and I think the way we both found a connection to our Chinese heritage was through the food and that was a very unique connection we had there.”
And while he resonated with Mel in particular, Eric adds that the Three Judges are just as great to work with.
âJudges are exactly like they are in real life, as they appear on television,â he says.
“They are so personable and full of candor and integrity and think they really want to see you outperform so they have been incredibly helpful with their advice and feedback.”
Eric also adds that while he didn’t really appreciate the importance of his family’s background and culture when he was younger, it’s in the last three years or so that he’s really connected. to the Chinese part of his heritage.
âThe way I do this is through the food, it’s kind of the way I communicate,â he says.
âPresenting this through food and raising awareness about it more in the wider Australian context is something that I’m incredibly passionate about and that’s what I’m going to do to move forward.â