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It was a delight to have original MasterChef champ, Julie Goodwin back on our screens earlier this month in SBS's confronting poverty doco, Could You Survive on the Breadline?
And Aussie viewers will see even more of the beloved star when the 51-year-old goes back to her roots on MasterChef: Foodies vs Favourites in 2022.
Julie 'petrified' of MasterChef return
Julie, who won the cooking show's inaugural season back in 2009, will return to the MasterChef kitchen along with a handful of other top-notch former contestants like Alvin Quah (S2), Michael Weldon (S3) and Sarah Todd (S6).
The 'Favourites' will face off with 12 new amateur 'Foodies' under the watchful eye of judges Melissa Leong, Andy Allen and Jock Zonfrillo.
In an exclusive chat with Yahoo Lifestyle, Julie admits that her excitement for her big return is mixed with a hefty helping of nerves.
"I'm quite petrified about it," she says. "I watch [MasterChef] every year and I've just watched the standard rise and rise and the food get more and more amazing."
A quick comparison of the grand finale episodes in the first and most recent seasons shows us just how far we've come over the past 12 years.
In the season one grand finale, Julie and her fellow finalist Poh Ling Yeow's final task was replicating celebrity chef Matt Moran's chocolate cake.
Fast-forward to the 2021 finale where contestants had to cook two of Quay chef Peter Gilmore's dishes — a main of savoury squid noodles, a shiitake custard and koji butter sauce as well as a brand-new golden crackle dessert — in just five hours.
Julie's numerous cookbooks, TV appearances and her hospitality company, Julie's Place are testament to the fact that her own skills and talent have likewise continued to grow over the past decade or so.
Still, she's keen to find out how she measures up against her fellow MasterChef alum as well as the fresh faces in Foodies vs Favourites.
"It'll be really interesting to see if my style will cut it these days in the MasterChef kitchen," she says.
For Julie, saying yes to Foodies vs Favourites was a no-brainer and she can't wait to don that iconic apron once again — and, of course, have a bit of fun along the way.
"I just know that last time was such an amazing experience and every time life throws something at you, including the SBS program that I've been involved with, I'm very open to it all because you just never know what it'll lead to.
"I'm grateful to have been given another chance to go on that trip and I'm looking forward to it. I think it'll be a lot of fun."
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