Welcome back to EAT MY WORDS. Today we’ve spoken with the wonderfully talented and incredibly humble Shelina Permalloo the recent winner of Season 12 Masterchef . She is currently on tour, and you can follow her movements and experiences on her website shelinapermalloo.com. She has some amazing recipes on there too! You can also find her on Twitter @hungrymauritian
Masterchef is such a life changing experience, what made you first apply and where did you want it to take you?
I applied on a whim, with my best friend on the other side of the phone as we went through the application, I really didn’t think anything of it to be honest… then a few months later I got the call!
How has this experience differed from your expectations?
I had very little expectations as I genuinely didn’t think I would go very far in the competition, so in that sense, every step of the way was a brilliant and challenging experience!
What do you think was your best best dish on the show?
I was most proud of my Octopus dish, as in Mauritius, it’s a salad that you serve in a piece of bread, and I managed to use that sense of nostalgia and turn it into a refined restuarant dish – I really did love that dish!
What was the best skill you learned?
Be true to yourself – whatever your cooking style is and whatever it is you love – keep doing it and only ever cook with ingredients that you yourself, would want to eat!
How many times did you make Greg Wallace go “PHWOOAAAARRRR!!!”
Erm… *blush* I’m not sure .. ha ha!
Who did you see as the biggest threat to your crown?
I thought it could be either one of those boys, Andrew and Tom, that are absolutely excellent…
What’s your favourite local restaurant?
I’m lucky to live near some really lovely restaurants, at the moment I am loving Meza – a small restuarant – with 14 covers, in Tooting that serves Lebanese food, really lovely and quaint
What’s your biggest pet peeve about the hospitality industry?
I don’t think I have one to be honest…
What chefs do you admire?
The list is endless but I’ll give it a stab:
all the Roux’s, Monica Galetti, Tom Kitchin, Gert Van Heecke, Clare Smyth, Raymond Blanc, Angela Hartnett, Atul Kocchar, James Campbell … This could go on forever – I have great admiration for many chefs I’ve had the honour in working with…Share
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