masterchef’s Kate Bracks
Why is the winner of TV cooking show
Masterchef not in charge of her own restaurant?
Kate Bracks is an unusual Masterchef winner, having returned to her quiet town
of Orange to raise her three children and write a recipe book.
“I went on Masterchef to learn as much as I could and I want to use
those skills in a foodie-style Bed and Breakfast,” Kate says, adding
that she and her husband Luke are still investigating the project’s
“With the stage of life I am in, as a mother, it is not an option to
become a chef.”
Enjoying being back with her family after over six months apart, Kate is busy
writing a cookbook of her favourite desserts to be released next year, which
will be titled ‘The Sweet Life’.
“The idea is to take a basic skill, like making meringue, show how to do
it and a few recipes that use that technique in a dessert, like a lime
meringue pie,” she explains.
Kate hopes to include the infamous coffee cake recipe that sent her into the
Masterchef top 24 — which is also the very recipe that began her love of
baking at just eight years of age, when her mother suggested some baking would
allay holiday boredom.
A giggling Kate recalls: “It was the era of Peter Russell-Clark so I set
up my little containers of ingredients and talked to the wall as if it was the
TV. It was probably quite a gaudy result, but my family, of course, loved
Kate wanted to become a chef until she found out during Year 10 work
experience that it meant “working while others played”, so when
school finished, she remembers being settled on becoming a school teacher but
was still at a crossroads in regards to her spiritual direction.
“I grew up in a Christian family, so I was very familiar with who God
was, but I was in a long-term relationship where my boyfriend was not really
following God any more and I was depending on things other than
Kate says she always knew that “God created the world and us so that we
would be in relationship with Him, yet He doesn’t force Himself down our
throats, He just lovingly shows us Himself.”
Balanced against that, Kate explains, is the fact that, “at the end of
time He will judge us.”
But she adds that there is good news: “God’s love for us was shown
in the fact that He sent Jesus to take our punishment for those who are in
relationship with Him, so if we trust in Jesus’ sacrifice we do not need
to fear that judgment day, knowing that we are forgiven.”
After spending a year overseas away from her family, Kate returned and started
attending a church that taught the Bible accurately.
“I remember in that new church fully grasping what grace was,”
Kate realised that God’s forgiveness was not dependent on her own good
deeds, but on God’s undeserved favour in putting Jesus’ perfect
sinless record on her own record.
As the Bible says in Ephesians chapter two: “Because of His great love
for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were
dead in our sins — it is by grace you have been saved... and this not
from yourselves, it is the gift of God — not by works, so that no one
Realising she no longer needed to work for God’s approval, but only
daily surrender her life to God’s control, she says she fully believed
in Jesus and from that point on “I had this thirst to learn more about
God and who He says He is in the Bible”.
“I felt a strong sense that I should compete in Masterchef”, says Kate Bracks
Kate says she also knew that God wanted her to end the relationship with her
boyfriend who was no longer following God. Some years later Kate married Luke,
a man who loves Jesus as much as she does and is also a school teacher.
Through her life’s journey she says at times it has been difficult to
know what God wanted her to do, but He has always continued to grow and guide
“Every day, God talks to me in the Bible and I talk to Him in
prayer,” she explains.
There were indications from God that He was urging her to compete in
Masterchef — one being that her husband and children fully supported her
and prayed with her about the decision, and her friends were highly supportive
“I went into the competition with a very strong sense that God was
leading me there and my job was to be faithful to Him,” Kate
“Then when the opportunity with the Dalai Lama came up it gave me a real
sense of clarity that this was my time to stand up for God.
“I suppose a lot of people knew I was a Christian but probably
didn’t expect that I would go to such lengths as to refuse to call the
Dalai Lama ‘Your Holiness’, and so I think that prompted a lot
more questions from the crew and the contestants about what I believed:
‘So what is it exactly that you believe? What type of Christian are you?
What do you think holiness is?’”
Kate shares she had more than twenty conversations about the good news of
“Don’t know if you noticed watching on the TV that I looked
exhausted, and I was, because there was a lot more going on for me, more than
just the cooking.”
As for the future, Kate feels safe based on past experience that God will
always guide and never abandon her.
“I look back and see times when perhaps I stagnated in my relationship
with Him,” she says, “but all through the peaks and troughs of
walking with God, He has never left me.”