MasterChef Australia 2016 is not just about delectable food and grueling pressure tests anymore. It’s also about the people sporting the coveted MasterChef aprons and their stories.

This year, MasterChef Australia 2016 presents an interesting roster of aspiring chefs. We have a ranger, a coffee roaster, and two siblings to name a few. Putting the focus on the very people preparing the food instead of the latter itself is the current driving force that makes this season of MasterChef Australia.

ALSO READ: ‘It’s Smaller & More Real’ Says Judges

MasterChef  judge Gary Mehigan explained that the show is done going for “bigger and better.” Instead, the goal is to make it “smaller and more real.”

“The bigger this year is how hard we look for the contestants to find the right people and the better is really good, passionate cooks and allowing them the space to cook,” judge Matte Preston explained, via The judges shared that the long-running show “belongs to the viewing public,” and has fostered an interest in cooking among the youth.

Mehigan revealed that one of this year’s contestants grew up watching MasterChef Australia in the last eight years. She watched her first MasterChef Australia episode at age 11. Now, she’s 19 years old and firing up the stove to compete.

ALSO READ: Spoilers: Expect Bigger Challenges, Tougher Judges

There’s also another story that has already captivated MasterChef Australia 2016 viewers. Cecilia Vuong qualified to compete in 2014, but unfortunately had to withdraw from the show due to a serious head injury, Sydney Morning Herald reports. Hers is the story that has inspired many. She never gave up on her dream of becoming a top chef. She stood back up when she fell down. She’s not going to take this second chance for granted. She’s bringing her A-game to the plate.

This year’s show is also filled with aspirants brimming with passion for the culinary arts. Queensland coffee roaster Matt Sinclair postponed his honeymoon to compete in MasterChef. The 27-year-old newlywed declared that while he was hesitant to participate at first, he realised that joining the show is “the greatest decision” he’s ever made.

MasterChef Australia 2016 airs weeknights on Channel Ten.