5 minutes with Masterchef Australia's Matt Preston

By admin
06 August 2014

After having a live interview at KFM studios for their breakfast show, Matt Preston (of course wearing one of his signature cravats) answered a few questions that we were dying to ask.

After having a live interview at KFM studios for their breakfast show, Matt Preston (of course wearing one of his signature cravats) answered a few questions YOU's food ed, Carmen Niehaus, was dying to ask. Through a frantic book signing, here's what he had to say.

What do you think of Cape Town?

"Cape Town is amazing; you can see a lot of similarities between Cape Town and Australia."

How would you compare Jo’burg to Cape Town?

"People in Jo’burg are like: “Matt from Masterchef Australia! Hi Matt, hi Matt!” they are extremely excited and all over you. People in Cape Town are a lot like the Australians, laid-back and easy-going. They don’t make a big fuss. They'll just give you a quick pat on the shoulder, and then carry on with whatever they were doing."

What restaurants/places have you visited in Cape Town?

"Jason’s bakery – for the croissants, Truth – for the coffee, Giovanni’s – also for coffee, The Kitchen – had an event with Karen, Lefty’s – lunch, Manna – Prego roll."

How would you describe the South African food scene?

"The South African food scene has reached an extreme degree and then suddenly exploded. South Africans are proud of their excellent produce and that’s been reflected in their cooking as well. They also put focus on the ingredients. For example – they will cook a piece of steak brilliantly and then not cover it with a sauce or try to hide it – they will showcase the meat and take pride in what they have to offer.

Cape Town has a lot of mixed cultures, using local ingredients, etc. The restaurants are in little nooks and crannies, in hidden streets and hotspots.

Jo’burg is more like New York in a way, more metropolitan and modern. The restaurants are located in malls and shopping centers."

How would you compare a South African braai to an Australian BBQ?

There are a lot of similarities in the way of cooking. South Africans uses a lot more rubs and marinades on their meat though, and Australians cook their meat faster – closer to the coals/higher heat. Both, however, are big meat eaters!"

Tell us about your new book (coming out August 12)?

"I want this to be a book that people actually cook from, not just a book for paging through – I want it to be dirty with cooking stains and the recipes to become family favourites. I took recipes that me and my family love, but it also includes influences from all my travels, people I've met, etc.

What are your favourite ingredients?

"Cucumber, feta cheese (good, creamy feta cheese), lemon, fresh herbs, maple syrup, bacon, avo, lime juice, crunchy cabbage, and barley [his favourite ingredient at the moment – he “absolutely LOVES barley”], lots of veggies, not so much meat."

What is your favourite recipe in your new book?

"The ‘no-knead’ bread recipe. When you try this recipe – you will never buy bread again! It is delicious and extremely easy to make."

In SA everybody is Banting on the moment – what do you think about it?

"I don’t think it is sustainable – the best stay to exercise more and eat less. In Australia the 5:2 diet is big at the moment."


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