I was born in Salvador, Bahia, Brazil in a traditional Latin American family. Full of passion for food and for life. My parents always had an excuse to celebrate something, only to cook a big meal and have a house full of friends. I was raised in a house where every Saturday a "proper” BBQ full of different cuts of meat where placed on a charcoal barbeque from 11am and the party lasted until 11pm.
I never had an opportunity to cook in Brazil because my family were the greatest food lovers and would always make something special for us.
I put my Electrical Engineer Diploma on hold in 2004 and came to London for six months. I fell in love with the city and decided to live here for good, but after a few months, I began to miss my family and their food. I started to cook some Brazilian dishes at the house that I was living in at Harrow School. The other houses at school started to ask me to cook for them. The word of mouth spread all over the school and I had to open a catering company.
In 2013 I decided to bring my food to a different level, and not long after that I had an invitation to cook for Prince Edward when he came to Harrow School and for the rugby players from the Rugby Federation Union. I had the time of my life at Le Cordon Bleu London, and when it came to graduating in 2014 with a Diplôme de Cuisine, I felt very confident.
A month after my graduation I applied for the biggest cooking competition programme on TV called Masterchef: The Professionals. I made it to the semi-finals with 9 others male chefs, where I was eliminated with a dish that summed up Brazil on a plate. I wanted to show all my skills as a chef and my African culture from Bahia.
I was honoured when Le Cordon Bleu invited me to say a few words at the graduation ceremony in December 2014. It was a great feeling to be able to share my stories with the new chefs. People still recognise me in the street and the programme opened a huge door of opportunities for me. I am still running my catering company in London, whilst offering Brazilian cooking lessons and acting as a consultant for restaurants.
All my live cooking photos can be found on my Twitter feed @brazilianchefuk or Instagram @lucianaberry