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About

VIBRANT FOOD INSPIRED BY CULTURE, IDENTITY & PEOPLE

Lerato Umah-Shaylor is a cookery writer, teacher, tv presenter and the founder of Lerato Foods & Naturals. Her community cookery school was set up to teach people how to cook with emphasis on celebrating provenance, culture and flavour. She is especially passionate about African food, it’s past, present and future and she is one of the strongest voices representing this cuisine with both inspired and inventive recipes. 
    
Her experience in broadcasting, editorial publishing and in teaching is a unique one which has seen her grow as a sought after influence in contemporary cooking.
Lerato believes in the power of using food to bring people together. From her fabulous supperclubs to cookery classes, her goal has always been to inspire everyone to cook and share food with passion and compassion.

Her recipes are an explosion of flavours inspiring wanderlust, while celebrating roots, from produce to the people and their culture. Her unique style of effortlessly marrying cultures has attracted food lovers and celebrity chefs as guests at her table and global brands for whom she consults, teaches and develops recipes.
 
  
 
"My goal is not a forced fusion for the sake of it, but a happy marriage of cultures."
 
COMMUNITY COOKERY SCHOOL & IMMERSIVE EXPERIENCES
Cookery Classes & Online demonstrations
Private Dining Experiences & Supper Clubs
   
 
After graduating from university in London at age 18 with a first degree in economics, her dream of working in Economic Development took her around the African continent. Things took an unexpected turn in Nigeria, when she ended up starting her first business, a catering company, where after a passionate conversation, a customer invited her to host a new cookery show syndicated across the continent. She later went on to work for a national newspaper, creating and editing a weekend entertainment supplement in the Friday paper, before becoming co-anchor on a breakfast tv news programme, and producing her own cookery show.
   
She returned to the UK and started immersive superclubs to bring people together to inspire conversation about people and diverse cultures. Her supperclubs expanded around the UK, growing more popular and with guests wanting to learn to cook Lerato’s unique recipes, she founded Lerato Cookery School & Kitchen, a community cookery school on London and the South East.
 
Contemporary African recipes for Miele
Clients & collaborators include: Shell, GSK, Imperial College, Aviva, Tilda,  British Red Cross, Beacon Scholarship, The Queen's Commonwealth Trust, Visit Brighton and more, Robert Welch, Le Creuset & more. 
       
Supperclub with Waitrose & Wefifo in the UK
 
On stage cooking live at GTBank Food & Drink Festival in Lagos, Nigeria
 
Lerato Cookery Class in London
  
Contemporary African Cooking
Since the pandemic the cookery school has moved online to offer virtual classes and experienced reaching far more people from all around the world. We also organise community workshops with a variety of organisations, from local food banks, hospices to educational charities, using food to educate and inspire. She also works with social enterprises with a variety of goals from teaching cookery skills to both adult and children, inspiring social interaction for the elderly and those who struggle with integration for several reasons.
Lerato’s feasts and cookery classes, have been featured on the BBC, TimeOut, Daily Mail, The Guardian, The Evening Standard, Vice and more. Her latest supperclubs have been in collaboration with Waitrose and Wefifo, held in several Waitrose stores transformed into amazing pop-up dining spaces.
   
Clients & Collaborations 
She has worked with brands such as Tilda Rice to develop recipes for a launch campaign, hosted supperclubs in several stores in collaboration with Waitrose, with more collaborations with Soho House, Divine Chocolate and more. Recent clients include Shell, GSK, Aviva, Slack, Imperial College.
During lockdown she worked with one of her social enterprise partners, to deliver online classes for adults and she took her Kids Cookery Club online, with free cookery classes for the whole family.
    
  Food Products 
Lerato’s desire to educate and inspire has also led to the development of a growing range of fine food products, including Lerato Gourmet Brownies, a luxurious vegan collection using premium 70% fairtrade chocolate and a new small batch and sustainable spice brand to encourage cooks to make magic in the kitchen.
  
To work with Lerato on brand & business partnerships or for speaking engagements & cookery demonstrations please contact our wonderful team at Bev James Management: enquiries@bevjames.com