Lourdes on MasterChef

Lourdes reveals the double-edged sword of being a young MasterChef Australia contestant

"It's definitely an advantage being a little bit older"

Lourdes Leschen was the youngest contestant on MasterChef Australia 2024, but despite being just 22, she knew an impressive amount about cooking.

While some viewers may think the years of cooking experience that some of the older MasterChef contestants had would be an advantage, Lourdes revealed the surprising benefit she found being in her 20s.

“It’s definitely an advantage being a little bit older because you have that breadth of experience,” she agreed. “If you’re a 40-year-old parent and you’ve cooked for your family for the past 20 years, you’re probably going to do a lot better than someone who’s 20 years old and doesn’t know as much,” she said during a post-elimination interview with Chattr.

Lourdes on MasterChef. Ten.

“But on the other hand, if you’re younger, you might have fresh ideas for modern ideas that are really popular at the time, a bit trickier that people like, that might not be as stale, perhaps. I think there are pros and cons to both ages,” she added.

How Lourdes learn to be a great cook at such a young age

Challenge after challenge, Lourdes blew the judges Poh Ling YeowJean-Christophe NovelliSofia Levin and Andy Allen away with her skills.

She explained that there were a number of factors that contributed to her knowledge of the kitchen.

“I would say just the passion for cooking mostly, I mean, I think everyone knows how satisfying it can be to make yourself a really good bowl of pasta and just to enjoy it and to have people enjoy it as well.

“I think the external motivation and validation from people really gets me excited, because it’s so nice to be able to make a cake for someone and then to just adore it. That really makes me happy and fills me with a lot of joy.

Lourdes on MasterChef. Ten.

The marketing professional added that her vegetarianism also helped her learn new and exciting dishes and techniques.

“Being vegetarian from when I was a teenager, I had to cook a lot of my own meals myself. And that taught me about what good food tastes like and healthy eating, simple eating, and I also developed my dessert repertoire quite a lot.

Watch MasterChef Australia from Sunday – Wednesday on Channel 10 and 10 Play.

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