Leong exited the show in late October 2023, but remains part of the Channel Ten network. A spokesperson said that the decision to take Leong off MasterChef Australia was so that its spin-off Dessert Masters, which will air back-to-back next year, has its own “unique hosting team”.
So really, it’s all just another big opportunity for Leong, who said that it is a shift she “[embraces with joy. One that allows everyone involved, to expand.”
“In effect, I get to have my cake and eat it too … and what could be better than that?!”
However, it’s not just the food programs that Leong has set her sights to. On October 31, she announced that she’s going to swap her cooking utensils for stethoscopes, as the face of new documentary series The Hospital: In The Deep End for SBS.
Leong will be joined by co-hosts, actor Samuel Johnson and Gardening Australia’s Costa Georgiadis.
The new series will take place across three parts, and is exciting news for fans who were devastated to hear she would not return to MasterChef.
Despite her expertise in food, it seems that Leong was chosen for the documentary due to her mother’s experience of healthcare.
“She was nursing unit manager in the emergency department in Sutherland Hospital for about a decade, and she’s been a nurse since she was 17,” Leong told news.com.au. “So, to be given the opportunity to be a deeply unqualified fly on the wall, to get a feel for how much pressure the public health system is under, why would you say no to that?”
Leong announced the news on her Instagram, sharing her excitement at the new opportunity.
“Today, the other shoe drops. I have been waiting in anticipation for months, to share this new work…that quite literally involves brain surgery,” she said.
“Together, we jump head first into the world of @stvincentshospitalsydney, following doctors, nurses and hospital staff as they face daily challenges on the front line.
“It is a life blessing for me, to be given the chance to continue my expansion and evolution in television. There will be more to come (more on that later!), but for now, I hope this helps people to understand where I’m going, and why. Food will always be there, but aren’t we allowed to be so many things?!”
A huge congratulations are in order.