Peter Bayless, Winner of MasterChef 2006, is an independent chef, food writer, teacher and demonstrator. He regularly teaches at cookery schools throughout the Southeast, gives live demonstrations at food fairs, appears on TV and radio, and contributes articles and recipes to food magazines. Based in the Ashdown Forest area, Peter also runs regular events at Hurst Farm B&B and at Perryhill Orchards, and can at times be found cooking alongside his friend Thanasis who owns and runs the successful Greek restaurant Pilio in Heathfield. He has published a book of his experiences, ‘My Father Could Only Boil Cornflakes’, and is currently in talks regarding his newly completed book of traditional Greek recipes ‘It Isn’t All Greek To Me’.
Jethro Carr runs the pop up cookery school Kitchen Academy. He has a simple and friendly approach to exploring global cuisines and enjoys cooking with recipes that are down-to-earth and fun. He has taught in schools, universities, festivals and events nationwide. Teaching people young and old to cook, he performs cookery demonstrations, master classes, workshops, gastronomic experiments and corporate team-building events. He has run cookery schools with Hay Festival, Kew Gardens, The Olympic Park, Abergavenny Food Festival, PGL Cookery Holidays, BBC and Blenheim Palace.
Olly Dawson is the owner of the extremely popular street food stall Olly’s Fish Shack. At the Fish Shack, Olly and his team keep things simple, serving dishes from exceptionally fresh local fish from dayboats or MSC certified catch. In the decade before starting the Fish Shack, Olly worked as a community chef in Sussex and the surrounding area sharing his passion for cooking and helping people get the same satisfaction he gets when he’s in front of the stove!
Priya Deshingkar is the owner and founder of Deccan Tiffin, and runs successful monthly Maharani Supperclubs from her home in Hove, as well as popular pop-ups in the West Hove area. She’s also an academic researching migration at the University of Sussex who brings her background rooted in the cuisines of north India to Brighton & Hove. She says she learnt how to cook from her grandmothers and many neighbourhood Auntijis who were all great cooks.
Charlotte Fuller is an experienced, trained pastry chef. She runs her own small cake business and work freelance as a pastry chef. Qualified with the Award in Education & Training (formerly PTTLLS) from Brighton City College, she is also an experienced trainer, having worked with people of many ages, skill levels and backgrounds – from a cookery club for NEET (not in education, employment or training) young people to cookery courses for older women. She has undertaken sessional workshops for Brighton & Hove Food Partnership, including Albion in the Community, Zip Zaps, Shape Up, Soup and Stomp and Cooking for Wellbeing.
Tina Horvath has always enjoyed using food to bring people together. She worked on the London restaurant scene in a variety of front of house roles for over 20 years before her food knowledge shaped a desire to move into the kitchen and cook. She set up CanTina Brighton in 2010, opening her home to create the city’s first regular supper club. Since then, CanTina has been featured, reviewed and named as one of the UK’s best supper clubs in Stylist magazine, Grazia and BBC Olive. Tina cooks for a variety of events – and most weekends she is at the stove cooking for anything from 10 to 100 diners. Her food heroes are many and include Yotam Ottolenghi, Skye Gyngell, Sam and Sam Clark and Anna Jones. She has a degree in Food and Culinary Arts.
Zoe Marks is from Brighton, and was brought up eating a plant-based diet. She is a food educator and freelance chef, specialising in vegan cooking. She has taught in community kitchens, primary schools and commercial cookery schools, and has cooked in many popular vegan and vegetarian restaurants. She is passionate about teaching people how to make affordable tasty vegan food from scratch. Zoe uses seasonal ingredients and interesting flavour combinations to make vibrant, healthy plant-based dishes.
Bookie Mitchell is the founder and owner of Chilli Chicks Thai cooking school. She set up the popular Street Thai restaurant, with its Thai Street food concept, in Brighton, and has many years’ experience in the hospitality industry behind her. Passionate about cooking, she learned her ways with food by watching and helping her grandmother prepare dishes – and she insists: “Thai cooking is easy, let me show you how.”
Anna Schwarz is a cookery teacher and chef with a love of food and 20 years’ experience. She is a qualified pastry chef who used to work at Real Patisserie, and she regularly caters for large events from festivals to weddings. She believes that cooking and eating together are satisfying, creative and bring people together. She enjoys showing people that anyone – not just chefs – can make and enjoy delicious food, and that healthy food can taste great. Since 2002 Anna has worked as a community cookery teacher. The hundreds of people who have come to her courses have regularly said things like “I didn’t know it could be so easy”, “I didn’t know I liked cooking”, and “that can’t be healthy, it tastes too good”.
Kanthi Thamma was born and raised in Hyderabad, the culinary capital of southern India and is still inspired by its history, food and flavors of his childhood. It was in his mother’s kitchen where he was inspired to become a chef, a journey that has seen him travel the world in search of culinary inspiration and excellence. He opened his first restaurant, Curry Leaf Cafe, which then expanded to two other restaurants and a Kiosk at the Brighton Railway Station. He also runs gastronomic tours in the South of India as the Spice Circuit, taking groups to Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu’s rich culture and cuisines.
Fran Taylor, the Brighton Nutritionist, is an Association for Nutrition (AfN) registered Public Health Nutritionist who has extensive experience in children and family nutrition. She has run eating well programmes for healthy families, healthy weight workshops for new parents, fussy eating trouble shooting and works with organisations such as Albion in the Commnity to provide guidance for fuelling active kids. Fran works with groups, families and on a one-to-one basis, and she combines nutritional expertise, practical guidance and behaviour change techniques.
Lerato Umah-Shaylor is a chef, cookery writer and owner of Lerato Foods & Naturals. She is best known for her vibrant feasts inspired by her African upbringing, “… memories of wood fire stews, street side roasted groundnuts and corn, ripe mangoes ready for plucking, sun-ripened tomatoes and many feasts shared with family, friends and neighbours…” After hosting cooking shows and writing for The Guardian in Nigeria, she decided to share her passion for African food at her now popular supper-clubs and cookery classes in London, Sussex and in collaborations in the UK and abroad. She has fed celebrity guests such as Lorraine Pascale and her feasts are featured in the likes of Time Out London, Evening Standard, on the BBC and more. She says: “I believe that African foods, from West African-grown cocoa in your favourite chocolate, nuts, spices and our vibrant culture and recipes should be celebrated for its influence in society, and I am excited to share this passion on our plates!”
Caroline Whiteman has been cooking and eating vegetarian food with relish for 30 years, and sharing her enthusiasm for simple and delicious recipes for nearly a decade. Bringing a group together to prepare (and eat) their creations is one of her greatest joys. She believes that vegetarian food can taste phenomenal as well as be incredibly nutritious, and the range of local vegetarian produce inspires her recipes and menus. Her original twists and tricks make vegetarian food so delicious even the most committed carnivores won’t miss the meat.