Bringing African Foods To A Global Table, with Contemporary & Vibrant Recipes for sunshine on your plates
"She is one of the strongest voices in contemporary cooking, especially bringing African flavours to the mainstream with her inspired and inventive recipes." Great British Chefs
Lerato Umah-Shaylor is a cookery writer, teacher, TV presenter and the founder of Lerato Foods & Naturals.
Her pioneering cookery classes and virtual masterclasses are bringing African foods to a global table with contemporary and vibrant recipes inspires by her childhood and experiences across the continent.
After starting her career in food by launching a catering company, Lerato went on to become a TV chef, a breakfast television presenter and columnist with her recipes in the Guardian Nigeria.
Inspired by her love for African foods and a desire to educate and inspire cooks to invite African flavours into their homes, Lerato decided to create a cookery school. Lerato Foods & Naturals was established in 2015, as a cookery school, pioneering teaching African cookery in the United Kingdom, and hosting vibrant culinary experiences bringing this largely unexplored cuisine to the homes and hearts of people in the UK and beyond.
Lerato Cookery Class in London
This has been a wonderful medium to truly create a globally diverse table with recognition for African foods as strong cultural inspiration for cooks and brands. 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.
Lerato’s feasts and cookery classes, have been featured on the BBC, Time Out, Daily Mail, The Guardian, The Evening Standard, Vice and more. Her latest supper clubs have been in collaboration with Waitrose and Wefifo, held in several Waitrose stores transformed into amazing pop-up dining spaces.
Contemporary African recipes for Miele
Clients & Collaborations
Lerato has worked with some of the best names in food & lifestyle as well as multinationals, educational organisations and local organisations doing amazing work in their communities.
She has collaborated with the likes of Waitrose, Le Creuset, Tilda Rice for live cooking events, immersive suppers, to develop recipes, cookery videos and more. Her collaboration with Waitrose and Wefifo saw contemporary African food brought to one of the largest supermarket chains in the UK.
Lerato for Tilda
Her collaboration with global rice brand, Tilda has been an instrumental force bringing vibrant African flavours to cooks at home with easy and adaptable recipes. She has also worked with multinational clients such as SHELL, GSK, Soho Group, Slack, Aviva PLC, NGO's and educational organisations like Imperial College London, teaching and hosting professionals from across the world.
We are always happy to discuss collaborating and working with those passionate about food and keen to celebrate diversity.
Work with Lerato
In 2021, Lerato Foods launched Virtual Masterclasses with guests participating from across the world. Guests in the United Kingdom can also enjoy intricately curated recipe kits with ingredients and unique spice blends, in what is a fabulously interactive feast, bringing people today to share great food.
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.
"My goal is not a forced fusion for the sake of it, but a happy marriage of cultures, so that you can be inspired wherever you are."
Lerato's journey in food
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.
Lerato Immersive Supperclubs
She returned to the UK and launched an immersive super club to bring people together, to inspire conversation about 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 in London and the South East.
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
Supper Club with Waitrose & Wefifo in the UK