Tis the Season to dish out culinary inspiration for MasterChef's Danielle Dixon
When MasterChef contestant Danielle Dixon tasted the divine pork belly entrée at Season restaurant during a Reward Lunch for the hit television series, she was introduced to the special Peppers way of thinking.
Such was Danielle's admiration for Season's commitment to using fresh local seasonal produce, like the locally sourced pork belly, that she chose to perform two week's work placement in June at the renowned restaurant which is located at Peppers Salt Resort & Spa on the pristine coastline at Kingscliff in northern New South Wales.
Season's Executive Chef Reuben Radonich hosted a Masterclass on how to create his sensational pork belly entree for MasterChef contestants, explaining his passion for using local produce to raise the bar for culinary excellence.
“I really admire and respect Reuben's approach to the menu at Season,” says Danielle, who experienced all aspects of the kitchen operations, from function catering and room service for Peppers guests through to cooking in Season for resort guests and the dining public.
“To use only local, seasonal ingredients is really important to my take on food and it’s what I look to when I’m creating my own recipes.
“I really wanted to see how this approach is carried through to the other aspects of the resort as well, as I think it’s incredibly impressive to follow through on the same philosophy of local and seasonal for the whole organisation and it’s something that sets Peppers apart.
“I’m also completing a pre-vocational course to fast track my apprenticeship and really wanted to work with Reuben on my practical component.”
Danielle says she found watching Chef Radonich at work to be 'incredibly useful'.
“It’s all the little things - like how they move around and organise their workspace - that help us as contestants perform better in the kitchen,” says Danielle.
Having never visited Peppers Salt Resort & Spa before her MasterChef experience, Danielle says she'd love to return to the resort's peaceful surroundings soon and enjoy dining again at Season especially trying her favourite dish on the menu again… the exquisite Bangalow pork belly braised in tamarind and rock sugar with Tweed River mud crab, green papaya and mango salad, finger lime and chilli caramel dressing.
“There’s just something really decadent about the combination of the melt-in-the-mouth sticky pork belly combined with the sweetness of the amazing mud crab, and that salad makes it seem good for you!” she says.
During filming of MasterChef the contestants enjoyed dinner with Chef Radonich at Season and a night away staying at the stylish Peppers Salt Resort & Spa, arranged thanks to a promotional partnership between MasterChef Australia and Peppers Retreats, Resorts and Hotels.
The partnership is the biggest undertaken in the history of the Peppers brand, which has a portfolio of 24 retreats and resorts in Australia and New Zealand that all take pride in delivering divine culinary fare to guests all year round.
Peppers properties from Palm Cove in Tropical North Queensland down to Victoria's Torquay on the Great Ocean Road and picturesque Tasmania townships have tailored an exclusive series of MasterChef inspired activities, events and packages to compliment the partnership.
Danielle Dixon cooked alongside MasterChef Series 2 winner Adam Liaw at the Taste of MasterChef event at Season on 10 June.
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