MasterChef: The Professionals will be filling that gap between Christmas and New Year with a new edition of Rematch 2021, which sees ex-competitors go pan-to-pan for the ultimate BBC crown.
They are no stranger to the kitchen, where they once aimed to beat their fellow chefs in the hopes of winning the Professionals crown. But now they are back for one last round to showcase their talents.
Demanding challenges will be set by the judges, which will involve cooking for restaurant critics Grace Dent, Jimi Famurewa and Jay Rayner. No pressure at all, then!
We have got the official line-up for this year’s one-off competition – meet them on Instagram below.
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Bart Van Der Lee
Bart is a 33-year-old private chef who became a finalist on MasterChef: The Professionals in 2020.
He started his culinary career at 16 years old and in his second year as a trainee, he landed a job at Toine Hermsen, a Michelin star restaurant in Maastricht.
He then moved across seas and worked internationally in luxury hotels and Michelin star restaurants. Since 2015 Bart has been a private chef and has worked on superyachts, and ski resorts.
Whilst working in Turks and Caicos, Bart met his wife Ana and they moved to London to start a family. Bart and Ana now have two daughters who are three and five years old.
Philli practised for Masterchef: The Professionals by buying a one-way plane ticket to Japan, where she spent a year travelling from Japan to Indonesia. Now, she’s known as a MasterChef Pros finalist!
While abroad, she worked in restaurants, visited Kobe beef farms, ate mochi, and had Okonomiyaki In izakaya.
It all started at the age of 22, when she joined Gordon Ramsay Restaurants and became passionate about Asian food.
Philli, now 28, runs her own food consultancy businesses with Nutshell Food, and offers masterclasses for skilled chefs at Chef Tribe. She enjoys cooking ‘pretty dirty food’, a hashtag she uses in her business.
Jamie was a finalist on MasterChef: The Professionals in 2017, and is head chef at Ugly Butterfly at Carbis Bay, a restaurant owned by chef Adam Handling.
From Putney, he was a chef at another of Adam Handling’s restaurants called The Frog – a British restaurant that served food with an Asian twist — when he last appeared on the BBC cooking competition.
Previously, Jamie worked as a chef de partie for Mark Warner and later The Pipe and Glass, after he was a comi chef at Le Gavroche. In his personal life, he is currently in a relationship with journalist Cailin Klohk.
The 28-year-old’s passion for cooking started when he chose catering as an option for work experience at school, because he loved eating. In his spare time, he uses photography in London as a way of expressing his creativity.
- MASTERCHEF: Who is Bart Van Der Lee? 5 facts on the Michelin star chef
Santosh Shah calls himself a Nepalese chef on Instagram. He is the head chef at Indian restaurant Cinnamon Collection, and was a finalist on MasterChef: The Professionals last year.
The 34-year-old is also the executive chef of Saffron Circle UK. He was originally born and raised in a village in Nepal called Karjanha, Siraha.
He is the youngest of 7 siblings. Santosh was inspired to take up cooking by his chef brother, and moved from Nepal to India at 15 years old to work as a commis in a five-star restaurant for 10 years.
He then relocated from Gujarat to London 10 years ago – one of his first jobs was at Brasserie Blanc. Santosh has been a chef for over 20 years.
WATCH MASTERCHEF: THE PROFESSIONALS REMATCH 2021 ON BBC ONE ON THURSDAY DECEMBER 27TH AT 8 PM