One recipe he’s particularly partial to is one passed down in his family.
“My mum for my birthday a few years ago made me handwritten recipes and one of my favourite ones is mum's banana cake,” the star says.
Apart from food, Rob and his mum have bonded over music since he was a little boy, with the singer telling New Idea that she used to take him to karaoke.
“It was sort of her outlet to get up and perform,” the actor muses. “She would’ve been in her forties or fifties back then, and she still goes now. I love going to watch her shine. It’s her way of performing still now in her sixties. It’s fun to watch. I love any chance to see my mum get up and sing.”
Clearly the performance gene hasn’t fallen too far from the tree, with the singer appearing on Australian Idol, Wicked, DWTS, and, of course, devoted Neighbours fans will remember Rob’s stint on the soap in 2017 as teacher Finn Kelly, as well as his reprisal in 2018.
Upon hearing the news that the show was to be axed, the performer took to Instagram to call upon the Australian government to throw more money at the Arts.
Speaking about the end of the soap, Rob reinforces that the government’s lack of support for the Arts is a “hard pill to swallow”.
“Considering everyone was turning to the Arts for support during (the pandemic). And when there are times of trouble, whether it's the floods or whether it's fire, it's the artists that put their hand up and put on free concerts and donate their time to help raise money for people in need.
“But there's an election coming up and hopefully people will vote with their conscience and know that it's the Arts that got them through the pandemic.”
After catching up with his former Neighbours co-stars Alan Fletcher (Dr Karl) and Jackie Woodburne (Susan) at a floods Telethon recently, Rob reveals the actors are “pretty sad” about the decision, while at the same time excited for what lies ahead.
“Al's pretty keen to keep his music career going. He's always had little side projects with all his music and they're just extremely grateful to have had the opportunity that they had for so many years.”
The soap has certainly left its legacy on the Aussie TV landscape. As Rob points out, Neighbours aired “the first gay marriage on television" and "the first trans person on television".
“They definitely tackled some really big issues and normalised a lot of big issues,” he adds.
“A big kudos to all the writers and producers. I'm a bit saddened to see what happens ‘cause it has been such a big school for young directors, writers, editors, and actors coming through, even the wardrobe people, hair, makeup – the amount of people that have been employed over the years that have gone on to create bigger and better things. Where do they learn from now? How do they learn?
“But all good things must come to an end. It would've been great for it to continue, but I think Channel Five wanted to concentrate on more local content, which is great for them. And hopefully maybe that means that our Australian government will try and make more local content as well.”
It's with a similar patriotic passion that Rob jumped at the chance to work with Australian Bananas. In honour of National Banana Day, they have released a Spotify playlist, curated by local growers, named the Karaoke Banana – with tracks ranging from Hollaback Girl by Gwen Stefani to Harry Belafonte’s iconic Banana Boat Song.
“When I got asked if I want to be involved with National Banana Day I was like: ‘This is the role I've been dying to play'," Rob says. "I love bananas, I’ve loved them ever since I was a little kid. They’re the go-to snack."
“(National Banana Day) also helps to recognise just how hard it's been for the farmers the last few years during the pandemic. There’s been horrific weather and it is a good chance to sort of give back to the farmers.