Stephen’s cooking up a storm in Oz
AFORMER Macclesfield student now living Down Under has found fame as a contestant on MasterChef Australia.
Stephen Rooney, 31, made it through to the final 24 after blowing judges away with his twist on the traditional Sunday roast.
He is now being put through his paces against some of the best amateur cooks in the continent on the hit TV show.
Stephen is a former student at Fallibroome Academy.
After a stint travelling in South America and working in New Zealand, he and his long-term girlfriend Georgina settled in Australia in 2008.
Stephen quit his job as a recruitment specialist to try and win MasterChef Australia.
He said: “I wondered whether if I might be too old for a career change, but I have now left a secure job behind, craving creativity and a new challenge in food.
“I hope that competing on the show will be the leg up I need to crack a new industry.”
Stephen was encouraged to enter the competition by Georgina.
Time apart during the competition will be tough for the couple, but they have successfully endured a long-distance relationship before.
A year after they made the move to Sydney, Georgina returned to the UK for three years to study.
Stephen got his passion for food from mum Angela and has been cooking since he was 16.
His go-to dishes include British, French and Italian classics.
Stephen’s ultimate dream is to cook for the Rolling Stones in his own restaurant with a huge kitchen garden.
So far Stephen has survived the first five episodes.
In their first challenge, the contestants had 75 minutes to make a savoury dish to impress judges to make the cut.
Then came a Mystery Box challenge and a team challenge.
As the competition continues leading lights of the industry including Heston Blumenthal, Massimo Bottura, Sat Bains, Maggie Beer, Marco Pierre White, Curtis Stone and Marcus Wareing will join in to ramp up the pressure.
The stakes are high with a prize of $250,000, an Alfa Romeo Giulietta and work in work in some of Australia’s best kitchens.