MKR served up Kiwi style

10:58, Aug 15 2014
Ben Bayly
BEN BAYLY: Is the new host on My Kitchen Rules New Zealand.

Take the pots off the boil, turn off the fry pan, pour yourself a glass of something cold and settle in for a Kiwi serving of hit reality cooking show My Kitchen Rules.

The Aussie food show is launching in New Zealand on August 24 and Fairfax Media caught up with some of the New Zealand contestants and their Australian counterparts at tonight's launch party to find out what the show is cooking up for viewers.

Contestants Josh King and Aaron Gascoigne from Auckland's North Shore, known on the show as the corporate dads, said the show had been an exciting ride so far.

Gascoigne said the show was "drama, comedy, and with a little bit of cooking thrown in".

But the pair was in it to win it, he said.

King said contestants were pushed to the limit until they failed but the pair's aim was to cook Kiwi cuisine well, keep it simple and prove men could cook.


The corporate dads with full-time jobs both came from farming backgrounds and they wanted to highlight good beef and fish in their meals.

Bogan besties Steph Usmar and June Lyall from Bay of Plenty said the filming of the show, which started in June, had been busy so far but it brought excitement to their lives.

Lyall said their favourite food to cook was seafood with a Kiwi twist.

My Kitchen Rules Hosts and award-winning Auckland chefs Ben Bayly and Gareth Stewart said they were looking for a high standard of cooking from the contestants.

Bayly said the hosts were looking for the competitors to extend their repertoire and cook different dishes week after week.

"We're looking for the cream to rise up."

Stewart said he hoped the show would show New Zealanders that Kiwis did know a lot about food and that it was a "foodie" nation.

Some contestants from the Australian version of the show made the trip across the ditch for the launch party and offered up a bit of wisdom to their Kiwi counterparts.

Mum and daughter, Cathy and Anna, said contestants needed to focus on having fun and remember the most important thing was the journey they went on with their partner.

Anna said contestants should "expect the unexpected".

Twins Vikki and Helena said the competition was "pretty intense and stressful" but fun.

Enjoy the rollercoaster but don't take it too seriously, Vikki said.

Hosts Bayly and Stewart will be joined by a tasting panel to help judge throughout the show, including Masterchef New Zealand winner Nadia Lim and celebrity chef Sean Connolly.

My Kitchen Rules will air Sundays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays on TV One, starting August 24.

My Kitchen Rules New Zealand Teams:

Group One:

Neena and Belinda - Modern Day Hippies, Cambridge
Sam and Dan - Social Media Buddies, Auckland
June and Steph - Bogan Besties, Bay of Plenty
Dan and Christie - Newlyweds, Dunedin 
Tracey and Neil - Beauty and The Beast, Orewa

Group Two:

Aaron and Heather - Polynesian Cooks, Palmerston North 
Ian and Sandie - Fireman and His Flame, Wellington 
Ricki and Jessie - Christchurch Cuties, Christchurch
Josh and Aaron - Corporate Dads, Auckland 
Kelly and Megan - Hawke's Bay Sisters, Hawke's Bay 
My Kitchen Rules New Zealand Tasting Panel Judges:

Nadia Lim
Grace Ramirez
Sean Connolly
Robert Oliver

Fairfax Media