Eastbourne man to appear on Masterchef
An ex-Eastbourne builder turned Michelin-star cook will appear on tonight’s Masterchef after battling back to health from a serious illness.
Ben Addems, 34, from Hampden Park, will be appearing on the program and competing against other professional chefs for the prestigious prize to be this year’s winner.
The chef-de-partie at The Interlude in Horsham said, “I’ve done a few competitions this year. I’m quite a calm person but Masterchef was nerve-wracking.
“I had to do a skills test which is where the judges don’t give you any preparation time. It was nothing like I have ever experienced.
“You’re in front of the cameras and out of your comfort zone. It did get easier. When you’re concentrating you forget the cameras are there.”
Ben said he was a builder but around three-years-ago he was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease. After six months of ‘severe pain’ and surgery he recovered and went to college to become a chef.
He said, “I always enjoyed cooking. I got myself better again and went back to college. I had to try and take a positive out of a negative. My illness gave me an extra push.”
Ben said he has been enjoying his work at Michelin-star restaurant The Interlude, where he has been for a year, but hopes to open a restaurant in Eastbourne one day.
Ben’s partner Billie-Jo Butler said, “He’s always loved cooking and loves the program. I am so proud of him. After he got ill he just wanted to go for it. He is so determined.”
Watch Ben make a pea risotto tonight on BBC Two at 8pm where he is up against five other chefs in the first heat of the week.