I moved to Vancouver from Italy to follow the love of my life 13 years ago; when I came here I did not know any English, I had no family support, I had to leave all my friends and my beautiful country full of culture and good food, I had to reinvent myself.
After 13 years in Canada I was called to a Master Chef audition, to audition for one of the top 40 home cooks in all Canada, it felt pretty awesome. I’m really proud of myself and I can’t wait to see what destiny will bring to me. I think this country is pretty fantastic and full of opportunity.
I seriously never thought to participate in the program, I don’t know what happened one morning while my kids were getting ready to go to the pool I decided to fill out the online application just to see which kind of questions you had to answer! I was 100% sure that I would never be called so answered all 56 questions very sincerely without trying to impress anybody. Two hours later I received a phone call from one of the producers. I didn’t get it right away, I mean I didn’t understand what he wanted ..lol..This gentlemen asked me more questions about my life and of course I was happy to answer him in a very honest way always thinking in my head that Master Chef Canada will never ask ME to do an audition! Well I was wrong because at the end of the conversation he did invite me to the audition in Vancouver on July 27. I was shocked, in my head I thought it was some kind of joke, I could not believe that this little Italian mom that came from Italy 13 years ago with nothing, got an invitation to Master Chef Canada audition. Inside my head I thought again that it was a joke. Sometimes I don’t believe in myself, unfortunately when I was a teenager I was rejected from my biological dad, so even after all this years, and all the love that my husband and children give me every day, sometimes I feel insecure.
The day after I got an email with all the details about the audition, in that moment I did realize that it was real and I felt pretty awesome about it. My cooking dreams are to open a cooking school, write a recipe book and to have a cooking channel so I thought if I gave all of myself, this wonderful opportunity can help me to reach my dreams.
At the audition I had to bring a signature dish, that could be eaten at room temperature. For room temperature it was really difficult to decide what to bring. I wanted to bring a nice home-made from scratch with love lasagna or gnocchi or cannelloni or simple a plate of pasta but everybody knows that those dishes cold are not really good. My last choice was her Majesty “Eggplant Parmigiana”. I still remember when I was a kid going to the beach with my family with the coolers full of yummy food and one of them was the parmigiana. I used to eat it cold on a nice piece of delicious bread. Eggplant parmigiana is one of my favorite dishes, in Italy it’s a dish that you can find on most of the Sunday/festive tables.
Audition day was really crazy, the night before I didn’t sleep at all I was so worried about my dish because we had to plate it in 3 minutes in front of the chefs and all the Master Chef Crew. The Eggplant Parmigiana is really good but there is not so many cool ways to decorate so I kept it simple just like me. I did prepare the dish at home, I usually make it in a deep dish but this time I made it like in a tower with 10/12 layers and left it in the round mold until I had to plate it in front of everybody.The 3 minutes were pretty crazy, so many peoples made awesome dishes! I plated my round eggplant parmigiana in a middle of a white square plate, put some basil on the side and some oil. That was it. Very simple. The chef came and asked me technical questions, tasted it and that was it! He had a piece of paper to fill in, the green one in the picture. After that, the Master Chef winner of season 2, David Jorge, came too taste it and we had a little chat! What an awesome guy seriously, my daughter is still mad that I didn’t take a picture with him, she was a big fan of him in the show. Matthew Astorga was there too and also an awesome guy. They both were very down to earth.
After the plating I had to wait few hours for the audition in another room in front of the crew, that was another awesome experience. I would have never thought to be able to do something so magnificent, I feel so good about my self right now! The casting audition ended yesterday so I have to wait another week for the results.I feel good about it, I gave all of myself, all the love in me went on my dish! Even if I don’t pass it will be an experience that I will never forget and I’m so proud of.
Below are some pictures of the event. Unfortunately I didn’t take a picture of my parmigiana because I forgot the phone in the other room!
Thanks all and thanks to all my friends, my customer that believe in me, without your love I wouldn’t be here. Finger crossed for me, next week we know the results.