‘What Am I Doing?’ MasterChef Australia Star Julie Goodwin’s Humble Text Message To Poh Ling Yeow

Image courtesy of Channel 10
MasterChef Australia's Julie Goodwin and Poh Ling Yeow on the show in 2009
When you think of MasterChef Australia royalty, the names Julie Goodwin and Poh Ling Yeow immediately come to mind.
And while they went head to head in the show's first grand finale back in 2009, they've since gone on to be great friends, forging successful careers in food and entertainment that have often shared similar directions.
This year, Goodwin is back on MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites competing alongside 11 other former contestants (favourites) and 12 amateur home cooks (fans).
Meanwhile, Yeow also made her MasterChef return in 2020 on its all-stars Back To Win season. She then appeared on screens a few months ago as an I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! contestant, seven years after Goodwin ventured into the I'm A Celeb jungle.
Advertisement
According to Yeow, it's interesting to see how their career trajectories have taken their own shape but also shared striking similarities from time to time.
"I’ve got a lot of mates on this next season [of MasterChef] so I’m very excited to watch," Yeow recently told Refinery29 Australia after filming I'm A Celeb.
"I got a text from Julie yesterday actually. She was just like, 'What am I doing?' I said, 'I don’t know, we’re both mental, we’ve both done it,'" she laughed.
"But you know what’s really funny? She did I’m A Celeb first and then now she’s on this [MasterChef] season. So we’ve kind of swapped and we were having a good laugh about that."
Since winning the first season of MasterChef 13 years ago, Goodwin has had her own TV show, Home Cooked! With Julie Goodwin, released more than five cookbooks, and started her own cooking classes and a catering business.
In 2015 she showed a more personal side when she appeared on I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!. In 2020, she opened up about her anxiety and depression, saying she was admitted to hospital for mental health issues.
Returning to MasterChef this time around is a very different ball game because the food industry has changed a lot in 13 years and there's plenty of fierce competition in the kitchen.
"Julie walked into the kitchen absolutely quaking in her boots," judge Melissa Leong tells Refinery29 Australia, explaining that the fresh talent in the kitchen is not to be underestimated.
Advertisement
"Because she knew that in her season what she needed to win was so full of love — and continues to be — but in terms of refinement and technique, what people are doing now just at home for fun versus what she needed to win are very different things."
But during the first episode that aired earlier this week, fellow judge Jock Zonfrillo reassured Goodwin that she's still got what it takes.
"I need you to just let it wash through your brain. You’re not just an OG, you’re also a winner," he said.
"But what you are, more importantly, is a classic. Okay? And classics never get old. Classics are very hard to beat."
The favourites on the show this year include Julie Goodwin (Season 1), Billie McKay (Season 7), Sashi Cheliah (Season 10), Alvin Quah (Season 2), Michael Weldon (Season 3) Mindy Woods (Season 4), Christina Batista (Season 5), Sarah Todd (Season 6), John Carasig (Season 7), Aldo Ortado (Season 10), Minoli De Silva (Season 13) and Tommy Pham (Season 13).
The fans are Ali Stoner, Jenn Lee, Chris Tran, Daniel Lamble, Dulan Hapuarachchi, Harry Tomlinson, Keyma Vasquez Montero, Matt Landmark, Max Krapivsky, Melanie Persson, Montana Hughes and Steph Woon.
Jock's right — we all love a classic. Let's see what Julie's got cooking up for us next.
Image courtesy of Channel 10
MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites judges Jock Zonfrillo, Melissa Leong and Andy Allen
MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites continues at 7:30pm on Channel 10 and 10Play.
Want more? Get Refinery29 Australia’s best stories delivered to your inbox each week. Sign up here!

More from TV