Meet the creators behind the suryalila cuisine
Our kitchen team comprises local and international chefs, bringing a delicious concoction of skills, flavours and approaches to the Suryalila table. One thing they all have in common is their passion for fresh organic food! Which is something we cherish here at Suryalila.
Gemma grew up in Chiddingly, a small village in Sussex England. As a child, she enjoyed cooking and always knew she wanted to be a chef. After culinary school and a year at university studying hospitality management, Gemma spent five years traveling the world, working in hotels in Austria, France, Australia and New Zealand. After returning home, she worked in a fine-dining restaurant for four years before joining the leadership at Suryalila. “I have always had a passion for whole foods and vegetarian cooking and when an opportunity for a head chef position came up at Suryalila, I jumped at the chance. It is so wonderfully inspiring to have fresh produce, beautiful herbs and edible flowers coming from the garden. It truly is a joy to work here and I feel that I put that love into the food that I create at Suryalila.”
Mariangeles is one of our talented chefs in the Suryalila kitchen. Originally from Jerez in Southern Spain, she now lives down the road from Suryalila in Arcos de la Frontera with her husband and two children. Mariangeles began working as a professional chef 18 years ago after studying culinary art and has continued to develop her skills ever since. Cooking is her passion and she loves learning new recipes, she's particularly interested in healthy baking. Mariangeles first started working at Suryalila in 2018. She feels Suryalila is a magical place where she has the freedom to create amazing recipes using fresh, organic produce. Scroll down to get the recipe for one of her famous chocolate cakes and make it for yourself!
Caroline was born and grew up in Germany, where she earned a master’s degree in Italian Literature, Classical Archaeology and Geography at university before becoming increasingly interested in nutrition and raw foods in her mid-twenties. She moved to Spain in 2010, where she trained and worked as a raw food chef for two years at an organic family hotel near Malaga. She relocated to Italy for a year, preparing loving meals for friends, before moving to Langkawi Island, Malaysia, with her then-partner to help start and run a vegetarian healthy food café to fight the rising obesity rates in Malaysia. “In late 2013, it became clear that I missed the Mediterranean climate. Suryalila was looking for chefs at that time and I auditioned and have been cooking for guests and staff ever since. My cooking focuses on gluten free, vegan and raw dishes – including desserts. I love the great variety of foods made with love at Suryalila. Being able to use organic produce, many picked from our own permaculture garden, is heavenly.''
Hannah is a plant based chef from the west of Ireland. She has travelled and worked in kitchens around the world. Hannah's cullinary journey has taken her to various places, including bustling cities and remote villages. Through her travels, she has gained a wealth of knowledge and experience in different cooking techniques, flavour combinations and cultural cuisines. Her passion for plant-based cooking has led her to specialise in creating delicious and healthy meals that are both satisfying and nourishing. As a chef, Hannah is dedicated to using locally sourced, seasonal ingredients to create dishes that are not only tasty but also sustainable. Her love for food is evident in every dish she prepares, and she continues to inspire others to explore the world of plant-based cuisine. Which is why she adores working at Suryalila! From creating her own business and brand of commercially sold chutneys, Hannah has come to share her talents with the Suryalila team.
Gemma is one of our local chefs, born and raised in Prado Del Rey, our closest town, and has been at Suryalila since 2018. Before coming to work for us she lived on the costa del sol, working at Casa Riad, the Saudi King's summer sanctuary, where she was immersed in middle eastern culture and cuisine. Gemma´s father has a large vegetable garden where he grows seasonal produce including; grapefruits, oranges, kale, grapes and he also makes his very own delicious homemade wine. Since working at Suryalila, she has developed a cooking style of her own, always producing tasty Spanish dishes, inspired and infused with all the local produce she was brought up on. When not working, Gemma enjoys foraging with her husband and 2 children for wild mushrooms. When they get home she tosses with fresh garlic and parsley and enjoys with family and friends.
Maikel is one of our latest additions to the team. Born in Prado del Rey, he started out as a temporary assistant but thanks to his motivation and effort he has become one more member of this great family that is Suryalila. He has always been in love with cooking, a hobby that he inherited from his father, from whom he learned that if you cook with passion and dedication, that love will be reflected in your work. ''Having the opportunity to learn new recipes, new foods is something incredible that makes every day of work a culinary challenge where local organic products are mixed with our own products to create the magic that comes out of our kitchen.''
Make this recipe for yourself
''Laughter is brightest in the place where food is good''