BDGTtT was shocked to hear the very sad news that Ross Burden died on 17th July.
A self taught cook, Ross studied zoology in Auckland before embarking on a career in food. After moving to the UK in the early ’90’s he took part in the original Masterchef (1993 series) hosted by the legendary Loyd Grossman.
Most people first became aware of Ross as a team captain in BBC’s Ready Steady Cook where a goody bag containing ingredients totaling no more than £5 was presented to the professional chef by a member of the public. Presenter Fern Britton loved to flirt with Ross, with his twinkly eyes and Superman good looks.
Although he seemed to disappear from terrestrial television after stints on This Morning and Kitchen Invaders Ross kept busy making numerous food and travel shows. He also presented wildlife programmes for National Geographic.
Returning to New Zealand, he returned to education and I was very pleased to see him as a judge for the first series of Masterchef NZ.
Always happy to tell it like it is, Burden wasn’t shy in giving his opinion on a certain Jamie Oliver. “If you think he’s tasty then you’re either prepubescent or you’re in a Zimmer frame … That man is an utter prat.”
Thanks, Ross. You will be missed.