People usually describe me as chaotic, stubborn and obsessive.
My earliest food memory is being obsessed with chewing gum (because we weren’t allowed it) and the sensation of mint.
From my mother I learnt to bake like a fiend and take pride in everything I do. She is also an absolute perfectionist, so I learnt from a very young age to pay attention to detail.
People would be surprised to know that I’m a total homebody. My favourite thing is to potter around the house.
The hardest thing about the MasterChef experience was being in lockdown and having very little contact with the outside world.
The most surprising thing I learned writing Poh’s Kitchen: My Cooking Adventures is the amount of discipline it requires to commit a recipe to print. Even with recipes I’ve cooked for aeons, I can’t help tweaking each time.
If I could only eat one cuisine for the rest of my life it would be Malaysian. It’s an incredibly diverse cuisine and there are too many flavours etched into my palate that I couldn’t live without.
The most seductive dish in the world is crème caramel. It’s silky, sweet and wobbly and I like the caramel ever so slightly burnt. One of my favourite things is to eat leftover crème caramel for breakfast.
The place art has in my life is irreplaceable. There’s nothing else except baking that makes me feel most OK with myself and the world.
One thing I would never eat is balut – fermented duck foetus still in the egg!
An ingredient I couldn’t live without is salt. It gives everything flavour.
My never-fail cooking tip is give everything a red-hot go. All my successes in the kitchen have been built on many more failures. You have to persist.
My motto in life is to be fearless. It’s better to have tried and failed than be left wondering what if. Also to laugh lots.
Twenty years from now, I’d like to have children, and be painting and writing books.
If I could, I would be more organised.