Andy is originally from Yorkshire, but the 49 year-old now lives in Dalkey, Co. Dublin. Currently unemployed, he previously worked as senior manager in the UK banking sector. He likes to cook seasonal food when it’s at its best and cooks every day for his wife. He likes to go to restaurants and replicate the dishes he eats when he is out. He used the money from his redundancy to relocate to Dublin and has been here ever since. Andy describes himself as a proud Yorkshireman, but having lived in Ireland for the past 13 years, he feels very much part of his local community.
Brian (42) is competing in MasterChef Ireland and is originally from Ballymena but now is settled in Dublin. Brian is a huge foodie! When he was young his grandmother would cook curries and meat ragu that were considered very exotic at the time and this allowed his imagination to transport him to far off places. A dream of his was realised when he got to eat at the French Laundry in California in 2008. He says that if he could turn back time he would pursue a career in food. Brian loves to experiment with food and take traditionally classic combinations and present them with a modern twist. He is a perfectionist when it comes to the cooking of food.
This 25-year-old MasteChef Ireland contestant lives in Stonybatter in Dublin with her three-year-old daughter Rose. She is a box office supervisor in a music and cultural centre. Caitríona says she fell in love with food when she became pregnant with her daughter and began to read lots of cook books! Her parents are great cooks that grow their own veg and rear their own meat from time to time. They are her biggest influence. She never had processed food growing up as everything was made from scratch and this is a big influence on her own approach to food. Caitriona is a big fan of hot and cold desserts and calls it "the epitome of comfort food".
Cathy (43) says that while her job is creative, it is not physical and this is why she is attracted to food. Before applying to MasterChef Ireland, Gerrard worked for the Citizens Information Board. She lived in Italy for three years and while she is influenced by Italian cooking she likes to experiment with all types of cuisines such as Middle Eastern, Scandanavian, Mexican and Asian food. She says that she is a cerebral cook - she likes to think recipes out in her head before she tries them.
This 27-year-old who lives in Kilbarrack in Dublin has just returned from travelling the world for four years. Conn has a passion for food and is really eager to learn more. When he was young he would wait until his parents' dinner parties were over and would devour all the left overs. His travels have influenced his cooking especially the cuisine of South East Asia where the ingredients and creativity of the locals inspire him to be more creative. When he first started traveling Asia 4 years ago Conn fell in love with Asian cuisine and in particular Thai and Vietnamese food. The reason for this, he states, were the dishes they create full of incredible flavours and freshness using only local ingredients and the freshest fish. He would love to become a successful head chef one day.
Danielle (29) from Kildare is really interested in food. When she was younger she worked as a galley cook on a charter fishing boat in Australia and as a private cook in a villa in Majorca. She also spent time as a private cook on a yacht in Italy. Seafood is Dani’s greatest passion and love in life. She would like to open a fish restaurant with a view to reviving the fish culture in Ireland which she believes is lacking at present. She learned how to cook from her mother and grandmother and her father taught her about butchery and the idea of head to tail eating.
29 year-old Deirdre (Dee) is a Business manager for Bank of Ireland from Ballinteer, Dublin. As a working mother Deirdre makes everything from scratch and is proud of the fact that her children have never eaten anything from a jar! She wants to become an accomplished chef and hopes that MasterChef will allow her the platform to build her own organic baby food business. She married into a large family and cooking for so many people has been a huge challenge. She dreams of working in the food industry.
31 year-old Fidelma's mother is the main influence on her cooking and she has always helped her in the kitchen. Darina Allen is also a big influence as she grew up watching her on the television. While she is proud of her accountancy qualification, her greatest ambition is to own her own cafe and she is always collecting ideas and recipes in the hope that this will become a reality. She loves being creative and recently designed and arranged the flowers for her friends wedding! Fidelma loves to cook for friends and family and loves socialising through nice food. Boyce continues to work in PricewaterhouseCoopers and took time out to be on the show.
37 year-old Jacinta is from Monaghan. She is really interested in organic food and enjoys learning about growing the food she loves. Her mother never enjoyed cooking so Jacinta began cooking at an early age and has been hooked ever since. Cooking for her children is a challenge as she is always encouraging them to try new things. She previously owned her own bridal shop and won the title of Bridal Designer of the Year in 2000. The shop is now closed and since giving up her fashion career her creativity comes out in her cooking. Jacinta says her favourite part of a meal is dessert, and her favourite food of all time is chocolate. She says that similarly to trends in fashion, she has always been ‘a little unorthodox’ when it comes to food.
44-year-old Joe lives in Dublin with his wife and two kids where he works as a flight operations controller for Cargloux, based in Luxembourg. Joe’s work involves training pilots on navigation but his dream would be to own his own restaurant one day. A native of Westmeath, Joe has travelled the world with his job. He is passionate about food and has completed a one month cookery course in the Dublin Cookery School. He likes to think of himself as an all rounder but feels he is strongest at desserts. He hopes that MasterChef will help him to achieve his dream of working in the food industry one day.
Nichaphat is originally from Thailand but has been in Ireland for 11 years. She is 35 years old and currently lives in Navan, Co. Meath. Her goal is to continue to run her business’ successfully. She cooks every day for her family because she wants them to eat nutritious meals. She loves to cook Thai food for her family and friends, but doesn’t like to limit herself and also loves to experiment with other foods and cultures.
40 year-old Nick is originally from London but lives in Swords. Although currently unemployed but previously worked as a medical evacuation co-ordinator for peace operations companies in Iraq, Afghanistan and the Middle East. Nick is very interested in food and is interested in cooking different types of cuisines. His work has allowed him to travel all over the world and experience other food cultures. His dream would be to open a gastro pub in Dublin. He does not like to cook or eat cheese but is hoping that this is something he can overcome!
30 year-old Simon Morris from Dublin is a Lecturer of business in The Carlyle Institute. Simon’s passion for food began when he left home and went to college. His mother is a big influence on his cooking as she likes to show off and this rubbed off on him! While he enjoys his teaching job, he thinks about food night and day and would love to open his own restaurant/ food stall one day. His biggest food influence is travel and he has been all over the world. He likes to come home and recreate the dishes he ate while abroad. He has a certificate in wine appreciation. Simon spent some time living in Barcelona and uses influences from here and in his travels in his cooking. One of his biggest passions are fresh fish and seafood.
38-year-old MasterChef Ireland contestant Sinead lives in Dublin with her husband and her 21-month-old daughter Mila. She is the owner of Upstage, an interior design business and is also a part-time milliner. She is very creative and came runner up in Grazia magazine's Hat Factor Competition judged by Philip Treacy. She is really into her ingredients and specialist shops such as Fallon and Byrne. She lived and worked in Australia as a restaurant reviewer for The Age Good Food Guide 11 years ago. She loves experimenting and being creative and particularly with dishes, experimenting with different flavours and food combinations. Sinead loves Spanish food and tapas, and has a very special affinity to Madrid and its foods, and also as her dad lives there and she got married in a small village to the north of the city near Segovia. www.sineadconsidine.ie
This 35-year-old from South Africa is living in Whitehall in Dublin where she works as a PMO coordinator for a software company. Tamarin fell in love with food when she bought her first cook book and couldn’t stop reading it. She moved out of home early to travel the world and this is when she began to cook properly. She grew up in South Africa where they had lots of different meats and spices and this also influenced her. She has been living in Ireland for five years.
36 year-old Terry, originally from Mayo, credits his wife with helping him to expand is palette and try new things. He has completed cookery courses in Cooks Academy and Ballyknocken House. He plans to own his own business one day that revolves around food and using local produce. He is understated but passionate about food. He loves to travel the world and draws inspiration for his cooking from his travels.