Junior doctor of Pakistani origin wins UK MasterChef 2017

Updated 13 May, 2017 07:12pm

Images Staff

"I'm from a big Pakistani family and we use food as a way of bringing everyone together."

.—SS courtesy: BBC
.—SS courtesy: BBC

A British junior doctor of Pakistani origin won the UK's Master Chef 2017 title, BBC reported on Saturday.

Saliha Mahmood-Ahmed, 29, is a junior doctor and mother of one who beat fellow competitors Giovanna Ryan and Steve Kielty to win the title.

Saliha impressed judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace as a "class act".

The winner says she wanted to combine her love of cooking with her medical career, by helping people with special dietary conditions find their ideal foods.

.—Courtesy: BBC
.—Courtesy: BBC

"To be the Masterchef champion is fantastic and wonderful. Adjectives are not sufficient. This is definitely the coolest thing I have ever done in my life," she said.

"It involved a lot of hard work and early starts — late nights cooking after 13-hour long shifts, no holidays, no breaks, no sleep - but it was well worth it," Saliha told BBC.

She swapped her on-call duties with colleagues to ensure she could take part in the contest.

Saliha said her love of cooking was influenced by her family and she was also encouraged by a teacher.

"I'm from a big Pakistani family and we use food as a way of bringing everyone together," the report quoted her as saying.

"I had very passionate grandmothers who cooked traditional Pakistani food and my mum is also an excellent cook. We love to feed people — it runs in our genes."

Saliha's meal was praised by judge Gregg Wallace as "East meets West" and "simply stunning — beautiful art on a plate".

Fellow judge John Torode said: "She's walked in here and taken her food culture apart and put it back together in a modern and very exciting way".

The judges have loved her Kashmiri and fusion-inspired dishes and vegetarian cuisine, added the Sun.

The judges weren’t too certain on her cheese and pineapple creation though – but this seems to be her only minor blip in the entire series, said the report.