BREAKFAST IN MELBOURNE WITH TASIA & GRACIA FROM MKR
I recently caught up with the lovely Tasia and Gracia from My Kitchen Rules (MKR) over brekkie at Magic Mountain Saloon in Melbourne’s CBD. We talked all things MKR, food glorious food, and what it’s really like being on TV’s most popular cooking show. Introducing Tasia and Gracia x
1. Hi ladies! Please tell us a bit about yourselves.
I am 26 years old and I have 4 sisters. I was born in Indonesia and have lived in Darwin and India before coming to Melbourne. I love to travel and try out new places to eat. I also enjoy art, music and of course shopping!
Being the fourth of 5 sisters, you need to be loud to be heard in my family, so I will admit that I am super loud. Outside my passion for food, I am dedicated to my research and have recently completed my Masters of Biomedical and health sciences (my sisters say I’m the nerdy one). I love to travel and explore different food, cultures and making new friends where I go (the goal is so that you can have a home in different parts of the world).
2. How would you describe your style of cooking? Have you always had a passion for food?
My style of cooking is Asian, we love to cook traditional Asian dishes and try to modernize the dishes by its plating. We love experimenting with new flavour combinations as well as using fresh produce. I have always had a passion for food, growing up in other countries I had the privilege to try new exciting foods and this seems like an adventure to me. But, definitely my passion for food originally came from my grandma and mum’s cooking!
I am heavily influenced by my mum and my grandmother’s cooking so a lot of the dishes I cook stems from them. I rarely follow recipes and mainly do my cooking by taste, as I like to make sure every element works well and complements each other. I tend to cook a lot of Asian cuisine, but when I go out with my friends we try a lot of different restaurants, this gives me inspiration to create my own fusion dishes.
3. What made you decided to apply for MKR? Was it always something you wanted to do?
I made Gracia try out for MKR. We both wanted to apply since 3 seasons ago, although we both had study commitments that we had to attend to. We are both passionate about food and cooking and wanted to prove to our family and friends that we can work together without killing each other. Hahahaha.
Tasia and I have always wanted to apply for MKR ever since we started watching season 3, we have always thought in a naïve way “how hard could it be?” – I think we were very wrong.
It was not until this season that we actually took the initiative to go through the application process, this was the only year that neither of us had other commitments with studies or work.
4. What’s it like having cameras on you while you’re cooking? How similar is what we see on TV to what it’s like in the moment?
Having cameras on you while you’re cooking is a pretty weird feeling. I mean sometimes you don’t even notice that there are so many cameras since we are just so focused and in the zone of cooking. That is, until the time is up and you realise “Oh my God, I said that before and it is recorded” – what you see on TV is definitely what it is like in the moment!
Most of the time when Tasia and I are cooking, we are so focused and too in the moment that we forget that the cameras are rolling, hence why you always see us fighting and bickering on camera, that’s just how we communicate in real life!
5. What was the best meal you had during the competition?
There are so many good cooks in the competition so we definitely tried awesome and honest food! Some of my favourites would be Luciano and Martino’s pasta dish and Nelly and JP Pierogi’s dish. Super yummy!
Honestly I’ve had several great meals but the one that was most memorable to me was the pasta Luciano and Martino cooked during their instant restaurant.
6. What are your plans post-MKR? Would you eventually like to open your own Indonesian restaurant in Melbourne?
Gracia and I have had always wanted to open up a business in food and we felt that being on MKR will give us the starting point. We are focusing on selling sauces at the moment and in the midst of planning and experimenting. We would eventually like to bring Indonesian street food to Melbourne and opening a restaurant in the future is our goal!
Tasia and I have always wanted to work with food and perhaps even have our own restaurants, and I think being on MKR made us realise how much we enjoy and love cooking. Currently we are trying to do something with sauces and are in the process of testing out flavors and designs. We will start with this but our ultimate goal is to bring the street food of Indonesia here!
7. Speaking of restaurants, we would love to know your top spots for breakfast in Melbourne?