River's Kitchen meets…Crystelle Pereira

This month, I decided that instead of cooking I would like to interview somebody who shares my passion. I spoke to Crystelle Pereira, who was runner-up on The Great British Bake Off in 2021 (and who also shares my Goan Portuguese heritage!). Read on to find out what I discovered about her.

When you were growing up, did you spend a lot of time in the kitchen cooking?

CP: Yes, I did. Both my parents are extremely good cooks, and I learnt to cook primarily from my mum. From the age of six I would watch her cook, and I was lucky enough to become the chief taster of the family, which resulted in me developing my palate very early on.

Did your primary school have a cooking club?

CP: No, it didn’t! I remember asking my school to add food tech to the curriculum.

I understand you have met some celebrities over the past year, which includes our very own King Charles III. What is the most exciting thing you have done, since leaving the Great British Bake Off?

CP: Yes, I did meet him, although he was Prince Charles then! It was a great honour to meet him. I was also invited to the premiere of Bridgerton, and it was amazing to walk down the red carpet!

Do you have a secret ingredient which you always include in your cooking?

CP: I don’t have a specific ingredient, but I tend to always add some sort of spice to my food! I do use miso a lot, too.

Do you prefer to cook sweet or savoury foods?

CP: I like to cook both, and my new book will include both types of food.

My favourite Goan meal is my grandma’s chicken curry. What’s yours?

CP: I would have to say mine is also a curry, but it’s Goan fish curry! It’s a staple meal for me and I absolutely love it with rice.

I’d like to thank Crystelle for taking the time to speak to me, despite her busy schedule. I am looking forward to reading her new book which she kindly agreed to send me (signed!) when it’s released next year. It’s called Flavour Kitchen: Vibrant Recipes with Creative Twists to Cook at Home, and it will be available from 23 April 2023. 


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