Occupation: Retail Manager
Banking on his strong Dutch heritage, father of three Ben is hoping his love and passion for European cooking will give him the edge to take home the MasterChef trophy this season.
Born to a Dutch mother and Dutch-Indonesian father, Ben says his greatest influences have always been family, particularly his maternal grandmother, his Oma. As a teenager he moved in with his grandparents, spending his afternoons kicking a football with his Opa while watching his Oma cook stews and hearty Dutch food. Alongside his brother Danny and sister Selina, Ben describes his childhood as idyllic, with a close-knit family who always shared meal times together.
A sporty and creative student, Ben played representative football in high school alongside part-time modelling, while also juggling his love of drawing and painting.
Following graduation in 2001, Ben worked in sports retail while studying Multimedia through the University of Queensland, and now works in retail sports management.
Dad to Ella, 13, Phoenix, 9 and Olly, 7, Ben’s food dream is to one day operate a small restaurant creating innovative Dutch food, inspired by his Oma.
Inspired by chefs and cooks including Luke Nguyen, Billie McKay, Nick Pinn and Yuya Kawasaki, Ben says his own food style could be described as rustic with a hint of sophistication. A favourite dish is bitterballen – a Dutch round meat served with a mustard sauce. And while he admits desserts may be his weakness in the kitchen, Ben is sure of one thing - he will take every opportunity MasterChef throws at him to grow in this competition.