GET TO KNOW VAL.
Valerie Ferdinand’s loves nothing more than cooking up a feast for her family and indulging in the quality time shared while bonding over food. Val is so passionate about her food and the traditions - it’s no surprise that she cooks from the heart and finds the whole process very relaxing.
Nevertheless, in the 2017 My Kitchen Rules finale, things heated up in the kitchen when Valerie and her eldest daughter, Courtney, went head to head with brother-sister combo, Amy and Tyson Murr. Valerie and Courtney powered through the countless challenges and eliminations that were thrown their way throughout the coarse of this recent season. A highlight of the show, was coming out on top in the MKR Sauce Challenge in which teams had to produce a meal with a sauce worth bottling and selling in Coles. Incredibly, Valerie and Courtney delivered the winning combination of Lamb with Sweetly Spiced Anglo-Indian Sauce. As promised the sauce went on-sale in Coles stores nationally the day after the show aired and sold out within 24 hours. A MEGA success!
Looking back, Valerie’s love for Indian cuisine and cooking dates back to when she was a little girl learning to cook with her father in India. When Valerie was 11 years old her family moved to Brisbane but things took a devastating turn when her father’s qualification as a engineer wasn't recognised in Australia. Her parents made ends meet by operating a milkbar-style shop seven days a week where the delicious Indian food soon became a part of the shop's menu.
At age 16, Valerie began curating recipes from her father and family into a prized book and currently, at aged 61, Valerie has been adding to the book for 45 years with daughter Courtney also contributing. In 1999, Valerie’s beloved father, Joe, passed at age 81, making his precious book of recipes, all the more priceless.