Since publishing this story, Network Ten has announced the death of MasterChef Australia judge Jock Zonfrillo on April 30, 2023. MasterChef Australia Secrets and Surprises will now premiere on Sunday, May 7, with the full support of Zonfrillo’s family.
MasterChef Australia: Secrets and Surprises is finally here, and we couldn’t be more ready. In preparation for the new season, we’ve been putting faces to the names of the MasterChef Australia 2023 cast, and getting to know the contestants a little better.
One of the home cooks who’s hoping to make an impression on the judges this season is Antonio Cruz Vaamonde, a 34-year-old software developer from New South Wales.
Originally from Caracas, Venezuela, Antonio moved to Australia in 2015 in search of a better life.
Antonio’s biggest influence and supporter was his grandmother, whom he lovingly called ‘Mamucha.’ She encouraged him to make the move, and the pair often spoke about his dream of applying for MasterChef Australia.
Sadly, Mamucha passed away during the pandemic, and the border restrictions meant that Antonio was heartbroken and unable to say goodbye.
Now, Antonio is turning his pain into purpose. As he competes on MasterChef Australia: Secrets and Surprises, he will showcase his culinary skills in tribute to his beloved grandmother.
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Antonio’s Journey to MasterChef Australia
Growing up, Antonio learned a great deal about cooking by watching his mother and Mamucha in the kitchen. He quickly developed a passion for both sweet and savoury dishes, including desserts, pastries, and Italian and Asian cuisines. He also loves barbecue methods and showcasing his South American culinary heritage.
Antonio draws inspiration from a variety of chefs, including Gordon Ramsay and social media star Andy Hearnden.
He enjoys collating ideas and elements from many cooks and chefs, which he then combines to create his own unique dishes.
Coming from a background of software development, Antonio is expecting his troubleshooting skills to serve him well in the MasterChef kitchen.
Antonio’s Hobbies, Interests, and Dreams Beyond MasterChef Australia
Outside of cooking, Antonio enjoys a variety of hobbies, including riding motorcycles, playing guitar, and spending time with his beloved golden retriever, Ziggy. He is also an avid hiker and cyclist, and loves to watch movies and listen to music with his friends and family.
Ultimately, Antonio dreams of opening his own patisserie, where he can share his creations with others and bring people together.
Ideally, he would love to run the business with his mother, who is also a talented baker, and make their shared dream a reality.
With his sweet and savoury skills, multicultural influences, and creative flair, Antonio is sure to impress judges and viewers alike.
MasterChef Australia: Secrets and Surprises premieres Sunday, May 7 at 7.30pm, only on 10 and 10 Play on Demand.
Want more MasterChef Australia? Read all our content here, and check out the stories below:
- The Heat Is on: ‘MasterChef Australia 2023’ Brings Both Flavour and Drama
- Get Ready to Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth with ‘MasterChef: Dessert Masters’
- Introducing the ‘MasterChef Australia: Secrets and Surprises’ Top 18
- The Secrets and Surprises Are About to Begin on ‘MasterChef Australia’ 2023
- ‘MasterChef Australia’ 2023: Adi Is a Doctor Who Combines Science and Cooking
- Alice Is a Gifted Academic, But Will She Win ‘MasterChef Australia’ 2023?
- Amy Grew Up Watching ‘MasterChef Australia’, and Now She’s Ready to Win It
- Andrea Is Ready to Push His Skills to the Limit on ‘MasterChef’
- Brent Is Back for ‘MasterChef’ 2023, and He Wants to Inspire Others
- Cath Is Ready to Make Her Culinary Dreams Come True on ‘MasterChef’
- Jessica Is an Optometrist Who Sees Herself Winning ‘MasterChef’ 2023
- Declan Is a Carpenter Who’s Ready to Get His Hands Dirty on ‘MasterChef’
- Grace Refuses to Let Endometriosis Get In Her Way on ‘MasterChef’
- Larissa Is Ready to Take on the ‘MasterChef’ 2023 Kitchen
- Malissa Is Ready for Her Once-In-a-Lifetime ‘MasterChef’ Experience
- Phil Is Ready to Bring His A-Game to ‘MasterChef’
- Ralph Is Bringing His Passion for Food and Family to ‘MasterChef’
- Rhiannon Is Ready to Follow Her Dreams on ‘MasterChef’
- Robbie Is Bringing Aboriginal Asian Fusion to ‘MasterChef’
- Rue Has Her Eyes on the Prize on ‘MasterChef’
- Theo Is an Electrician Who Plans to Show His Spark on ‘MasterChef’
- “Deeply Shocked and Saddened” — ‘MasterChef Australia’ Judge Jock Zonfrillo Has Died Aged 46