Cooking for India: world’s longest demo

3rd June 2021 | Eativity editors

Former MasterChef judges Matt Preston, Gary Mehigan and George Calombaris are set to reunite for the first time in 18 months in a marathon Cooking for India special to raise funds for COVID-19 relief efforts. The South Asian nation holds a special place in the hearts of the three. They all have a long association with the country, having visited many times.

The live event will run from 3pm AEST on Saturday, June 19 to 3am AEST on Sunday, June 20. It will include cooking demos and conversations with the three hosts as well as guest appearances by renowned local chefs and personalities. There will also be live crosses to globally-recognised chefs and cooks from around the world.

Matt Preston, George Calombaris and Gary Mehigan
Good things really can come in threes: the famous foodies are using their profile to help COVID-ravaged India.

Famous faces

Preston, Mehigan and Calombaris will spend the 12 hours together, hosting live demos and interviewing local culinary friends while cooking up their favourite dishes.

The live stream will also cross to cities across the globe. Viewers everywhere will have the opportunity to interact with the three hosts, ask questions in real time and chew the fat with international stars of the culinary world, such as Heston Blumenthal and Massimo Bottura; beloved Aussie chefs including Shannon Bennett, Karen Martini and Manu Fieldel; and MasterChef alumni Justine Schofield, Khanh Ong, Sashi Cheliah and Poh Ling Yeow.

Some of India’s most famous chefs will also be joining the event, including Manu Chandra and Ranveer Brar, as will Bollywood actress Vidya Balan.

Cooking for India to raise funds for COVID relief efforts
Oxfam India delivers PPE and safety kits to a rural hospital.

Helping the helpers

Currently, India is in the midst of the worst COVID-19 outbreak the world has yet seen. The nation recorded more than 400,000 cases a day at its peak, with thousands of deaths daily. The mission for Preston, Mehigan and Calombaris is to bring together the international culinary community to raise as much money as possible to support relief efforts.

According to Oxfam India, one of the charities benefitting from funds raised, just $15 will provide much-needed PPE (personal protective equipment) to frontline workers. Raising $445 will provide an oxygen cylinder to save the lives of those affected.

The Cooking for India special will be hosted on YouTube. Viewers can buy a ticket – prices start from $30 – to tune in. All proceeds go to charities in India that are supporting people affected by the pandemic. There’ll also be an opportunity to donate additional funds, with all money raised to go to charities Oxfam India, SEEDS India and Goonj. You can purchase tickets at You can also make a donation at