WHILE much of the country is tuning into series seven of MasterChef to scout the talent, all eyes locally will be on Bowraville’s Billie McKay.
The 23-year-old, being dubbed as “one to watch”, will test her culinary skills against some of the best home cooks in Australia in the tv reality show competition.
Much-loved judges – Gary Mehigan, George Calombaris and Matt Preston – have travelled far and wide to find amateur home cooks to join them in the MasterChef Australia kitchen.
For Billie, cooking has been a long-time passion, and after some persuasion and encouragement from her partner, Haydn, she applied on the entry cut-off date.
The show is pre-recorded and results are kept closely under wraps, but Billie’s mum, Alison, shared what she could without jeopardising or spoiling anything.
“We didn’t know Billie had applied for MasterChef, she rang to tell us when the audition was coming up. She hadn’t spoken about it before that at all,” Alison said.
“Haydn and I got to go to the top 50 auditions with Billie, as you may see in the show.
“We watched her cook her audition dish at the studios.”
Growing up on a dairy farm, Billie – one of four children – would always opt to “stay down at the house and cook dinner”.
“All the kids had to help do the chores at home and in the dairy too – milking and feeding the calves,” Alison said.
“We were always busy and they were such a wonderful help to us.
“Billie loved learning to cook from a young age and she always helped when it came to cooking cakes and biscuits.
“As she got older she would ‘bags’ to stay down at the house and cook the dinner, instead of helping with the milking in the arvo.
“She has always had quite an artistic flair and this showed in her cooking.”
Her passion for cooking is seen in her meals, especially in sweets – desserts and cakes. She taught herself to decorate cakes and has made many celebration cakes for family and friends over the years.
Although we’re not sure when Billie’s cooking will hit the airways, a glimpse of her in the series premiere on Tuesday night had Facebook abuzz with the hashtag #teambillie coined by many.
Tune in and follow her MasterChef adventure.