Alessandra is a holistic chef living and working in Mallorca. A plant based recipe developer and retreat chef, she curates dinners and culinary events for discerning clients as well as a health coach.
Born in South Africa in 1985 to a British mother and Kenya born-Italian father. Both parents are avid travelers and designers who have spent their life working in the word of art and interiors.
Alessandra spent her childhood traveling around East and Southern Africa with school holidays in the Cotswolds and Florence with her English and Italian grandparents.
These formative years introduced her to the the diverse types of worldly cuisine, from her granny’s indulgent roasts and perfect pavlovas, and nonno’s homemade ragu - to the exciting spices and tropical fruits used in the East African curries. This is what Alessandra believes kicked off her passion for food.
Later she moved to Tuscany and trained as a fashion designer at Polimoda Institute of Fashion Design in Florence and went on to work as a fashion designer in London where she established her own label Les Filles en Fleur.
At 32, and burnt out from city life (perennially sick from shortage of sunlight and a poor quality diet), she began to obsessively read about nutrition and started trying to work out home remedies to sooth her colds. She found herself strongly gravitating towards the culinary world and longed to begin a new life in a more natural setting.
After leaving London Alessandra enrolled in Le Cordon Bleu Culinary Academy in Florence to train as a professional chef. Immersed in the world of innovative fine dining at Gurdulù restaurant, it fueled her passion for the culinary arts and led her to Mallorca.
She began working with Michelin starred chef Andreu Genestra at his farm-to-fork restaurant in Cap de Pera.
Such experiences enabled Alessandra to have passion, discipline and respect for food, but when her mother fell seriously ill 3 years ago, she realized it was essential to educate herself in the medicinal aspect of nutrition.
After graduating from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition she began developing ways to enjoy food while acknowledging diet, intolerances and nutrition. With this in mind, Holistic Dining was born - a conscious approach to food that delights the senses while nourishing the body and soul.
“As a holistic chef, health coach and plant based recipe developer, I believe that what you put into your body is essential in caring for your physical and mental health and ultimately living a happy, balanced life.”
Alessandra strongly believes in the benefits of using local and seasonal ingredients from sustainable sources while minimizing the use of non-recyclable materials and food waste.
“Lucky for me, as I live in Mallorca, I have ample access to the most wonderful selection of fresh, organic produce that enables me to share my passion for health-conscious cuisine with the best that the soil has to offer.“
During our day together Alessandra whipped some of her favourite Middle Eastern condiments and served it on a kale salad (freshly picked from the huerto) dressed with a tahini, garlic, mustard and lemon juice dressing. Some creamy avocado and pecorino shavings were added for extra indulgence.
Alessandra explains, “Dukkah is a fantastically fragrant and tasty condiment that originates from Egypt. It can add a whole array of extra nutritional qualities to your dishes, including wonderful plant protein and healthy fats in the form of delicious toasted nuts and sesame seeds. The spices such cumin and fennel are known to reduce bloating and facilitate digestion. They especially help with reducing the gassy side effects of beans.
DUKKAH RECIPE - makes 1 large jar
1/3 cup of walnuts
1/4 cup of almonds
1/3 cup of cashews
1/4 cup of pistachios
1/3 cup of sesame seeds (I like a mix of white and black seeds)
2 TBSP coriander seeds
1 TBSP cumin seeds
1 TBSP sumac
2 tsp Maldon Salt flakes
1/2 TBSP dried thyme
In a pan begin to toast the nuts for about 2 mins until they become fragrant. Careful not to burn them. Now toast the coriander, cumin and sesame seeds on a low-medium heat for 1-2 minutes. They can burn very easily so watch them carefully and remove them immediately from the heat when they begin to change colour or pop. Place the toasted nuts in a mixer and pulse a few times till roughly chopped. Alternatively you can roughly chop them by hand with a knife. Place the toasted seeds into a mortar and gently crush them then add them to your chopped nuts with the salt, sumac and dried thyme. Mix all the ingredients with your hands or a spoon till uniformly combined then store in an air-tight jar.
Alessandra wore at Son Viscos in Valldemossa our Onna Dress in Piedra Heavy Linen and the matching scrunchie, Picking herbs from the garden she wears the Olive Striped Ren Shirt and the Blue Striped Alma Skirt. Later on in the interior kitchen the Citron Esther Top and the matching Judo Pants and finally the Scrunchie White Heavy Linen Top and matching Judo Pants.