I was born in Old Tiger Bay 1952 and lived in a modest 2 bedroomed terraced house, no tv, no telephone or indoor toilet. In the middle room stood an open fire with ovens on either side. Throughout the day puddings and stews were cooked on the fire. My passion for food started at an early age in my mothers kitchen. Anyone who knew Mrs Trotman would remember her famous pepper sauce. Cooking has always been a family tradition passed down from generation to generation as far back as great granddad Emptage, a baker by profession back in his homeland of Barabdos. My grandfather came to Wales in the late 1800 from Barbados and had a cook shop for seamen at 32 Maria Street.
Encouraged by my domestic science teacher I went on to study food and catering at the College of Food Technology & Commerce. On completing this I gained a few years experience before emigrating to Barbados.The job I held dearest was at the renowned Ocean View Hotel as Food and Beverage Manager. It was at that time one of the oldest hotels on the island with an excellent reputation for first class Bajan food.This was in immense challenge. It was here I gained a wealth of experience from 2 amazing women 40 years my senior.This experience was to change my relationship with food and drink. I discovered a whole new range of cooking methods and gained an insight into the many traditional herbal remedies, that have remained an important part of my daily life.
Over the years I have used my cooking skills to develop several projects including healthy living.
Part time tutor, Riverside Warehouse giving cooking classes and demonstrations to young children
Tutor at St Cyres School Penarth, Adult Education. Roy Noble joined one of my classes and assisted in the preparation of fish caribbean style for BBC.
Featured in the ITV programme A Taste Of Wales where once again Caribbean Cuisine took centre stage.
Demonstrated at Saturday Kitchen, Angela Grays Cookery School, Llanerch Vineyard.
Demonstrations and workshop for Womens Workshop over 50,s healthy living event.
in 2009 was excited to be chosen as one of the chefs to represent Wales at the Smithsonian Festival in Washington DC.
2012 was featured in a series for Cbeebies, once again highlighting Caribbean Cuisine.”My Story” took my youngest grandchildren on an exciting journey allowing them to understand and share their Caribbean Roots.
2013 was the 1st year that WMC included food for the celebrated Black History Month finale and I was the chef behind the menu and worked closely with executive chef to include favourites such as Jerk Chicken, Salt Fish Balls,Pumpkin Soup just to name a few.
Worked with the group Age Alive to promote healthy eating.
I have also designed and promoted a 10 week course, Back to Basics to encourage healthy eating and to enhance physical and emotional wellbeing. “YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT”