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Temple Fortune mum competing in MasterChef

PUBLISHED: 11:46 20 April 2017 | UPDATED: 15:25 20 April 2017

MasterChef contestant Shauna Kelly has been described as

MasterChef contestant Shauna Kelly has been described as "

Archant

Former advertising director Shauna Kelly is competing in tonight’s episode of MasterChef.

Shauna Kelly on Hampstead Heath with Jack, 5.       Picture: Julie Kim PhotographyShauna Kelly on Hampstead Heath with Jack, 5. Picture: Julie Kim Photography

Shauna, 46, a member of the Hampstead Mums Facebook group, won her place after undergoing an intense two-month selection process and will be seen on episode 11 tonight competing for a place in the quarter-final.

Irish-born Shauna has had a love of cooking from a young age inspired by her mother.

She rekindled this passion when she became a mum herself to son Jack, now five.

Shauna said: “I always had a love of cooking from a young age, my mother always had home-cooked food on the table, but I never had the confidence to apply for a show like MasterChef.”

Shauna Kelly, top left, with other MasterChef contestantsShauna Kelly, top left, with other MasterChef contestants

She was encouraged to apply last July by her partner, fashion and portrait photographer Darryl Vides Kennedy, and got through to the auditions.

“It was a tough audition process over two months with a lengthy online application, multiple phone interviews and then a live audition on camera presenting a home-cooked dish to the show’s producers,” she said.

Around 25,000 hopefuls apply for MasterChef each year with only around 400 getting to the audition stage with only 64 of these making it onto TV.

Shauna said of taking part in the show, which was pre-recorded late last year,: “You often sit on the couch and comment on the contestants but until you are there, in front of John & Gregg and about 20 production crew, home economists, lights & cameras, you have no idea of the intense pressure involved.“

She will be seen tonight competing against seven others creating dishes for judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace. Since pre-recording the show, Shauna, who is sworn to secrecy about how she does, has been inspired to start a catering business, ‘HOMEmade Hampstead, which launched last month.

The batch-cooking service is “for couples & families who are time poor but want healthy home-cooked food for their fridge & freezer.”

“I am only a month in but so far it’s very popular and have a few regulars already, I also cater privately for dinner parties” she said.

Watch Shauna compete tonight on BBC One at 8pm.

Visit HOMEmade Hampstead on Facebook here and on Instagram @homemadehampstead.

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