MKRNZ 2017 contestants, Teal and Sophie.

Teal and Sophie have been together for 20 years. Unlike the average couple, they work together every day in their hair studio.

These hairdressers could have the upper-hand among the contestants. Their experience working together could see them excel in the kitchen.

Showcasing Teal’s Cambodian and Vietnamese heritage, the couple plan on presenting a fusion menu.

Presentation and flavour are key.

Why did you apply for My Kitchen Rules?

Sophie: Our hairdressing business is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year. Teal and I thought this would be an amazing opportunity to challenge

ourselves in a different area, and push us way out of our comfort zone.

What is your food philosophy?

Teal: I come from Cambodia so a lot of the cooking style I have is based on where I come from.

Our philosophy for food is: buy in season, keep it simple and do simple things well.

What's the best thing about your cooking partner?

Sophie: Teal is a great motivator, and he's not afraid to push the boundaries.

Who is your ultimate dinner guest?

Sophie: My father, who we lost many years ago. He would have loved to share my passion for traditional Vietnamese street food.

What do you think your chances of winning are?

Teal: As a young boy, from a poor Cambodian refugee family. Growing up with not enough food was part of life for me. Now, as an adult, I have a strong belief that hunger should never be a part of any child’s life.

If we were successful and did win, we would donate our prize to the Wellington Children’s Food Garden. That may seem like a crazy notion, but this small gesture could make a difference in the world.