MasterChef judge grilled over shady tweets
ONE of the new MasterChef judges was forced to defend herself on The Project last night over negative comments she had made about the cooking show in the past.
After months of speculation, Melissa Leong was announced yesterday as one of the new judges along with Andy Allen and Jock Zonfrillo.
Not long after the announcement, some old tweets of Leong's resurfaced and they weren't exactly complimentary about the reality show she is now the face of.
The new MasterChef judges appeared on The Project last night, and during the interview host Waleed Aly brought up the elephant in the room.
"Now Melissa, I'm sorry to have to do this, but there are some questions that simply have to be asked," Aly said.
"You've tweeted in the past and some of your old tweets have surfaced today … my first question is: Why didn't you find the delete button?"
Allen and Zonfrillo looked away awkwardly as Leong responded to Aly and stood by her previous tweets.
"We're all human, right?" Leong, a successful food and travel writer, said. "We all have perspectives on things that change over time and so, you know, why should I scrub all my social media clean of former opinions that I've had?
"I may not believe the same things I did before but I also don't believe in presenting a sanitised version of myself that's highly edited because that's not who I am."
There will be a lot of pressure on Leong and her fellow judges when season 12 of MasterChef kicks off next year.
The best contestants from the past 11 seasons will return to the kitchen to compete in MasterChef Australia: Back To Win, which will be filmed in Melbourne early next year.
The new judges will be joined throughout the season by celebrity chefs Gordon Ramsay, Heston Blumenthal and Curtis Stone.
Network 10 chief content officer Beverley McGarvey said yesterday: "In a nation obsessed with food, we are thrilled to welcome Jock, Melissa and Andy as judges to MasterChef Australia.
"Their combined culinary credentials coupled with their passion and sheer joy for food, and their relentless enthusiasm to explore ingredients, preparation and cooking methods ensures we are in for a real treat."