"I come from a family of cooks, my nanny Pearce was a wonderful cook who baked beautiful cakes and dishes. My mum is a fabulous cook of really good traditional food and my dad, who has always worked in food sales, would go to the markets and bring home different and interesting foods. My brother Colin and I share a great passion for food.
Food is an absolutely solid and integral part of my family life, both when growing up and now. It represents so much more to me than just food - the best times are always when good food, family and friends surround you.”
Speaking on the inspiration for entering the MasterChef competition, Jane said:
“My youngest, Ben, had been pestering me for a couple of years to enter and on a whim last year we filled in the form together. I really wanted to just immerse myself in the whole food process and do something just for me where I could concentrate on something I loved.”
In the final episode Jane explained that she has spent the last ten years fighting cancer and has been in remission for the last three years.
“There was a time when I thought I wouldn’t be here; it’s been incredibly tough, a really horrible time, a very scary time. You’ve got to get through these things, and with my children there’s no way I was going to give up. You have to try and survive and I’m one of the lucky ones.”
On her MasterChef journey, she continued: “It’s been an amazing experience, one that just takes you out of your comfort zone and shakes you up; I wouldn’t have swapped it for the world. On a personal front, I wanted to prove to myself how far I’ve come. I am determined not to be defined by things that have happened to me in the past and instead proud of what I can achieve now and in the future.”
Jane Devonshire's 'Hassle Free Gluten Free' American Pancakes.
MasterChef 2016 Champion Revealed
Jane said: “I’m so happy I can’t tell you! It’s one of the best euphoric moments; it’s just precious. My dad always says you don’t get something for nothing and you’ve got to work hard for it – I did that and I’m standing here now as the winner!”
She continued: “For me as a personal achievement it’s definitely up there as the most amazing thing I’ve ever done.”
John Torode said: “Jane has more determination, more drive, more heart than I’ve ever seen in a MasterChef contestant in my whole career.”
He added: “She’s not scared of any ingredients, she’s not scared of any techniques, and she’s definitely not scared of any challenges we’ve thrown at her. She fought through the competition and today made us three extraordinary courses – today there is one MasterChef champion … and one very, very well-deserved MasterChef champion.”
Gregg Wallace added: “Jane has had one of the most incredible journeys on MasterChef that I’ve witnessed. She obviously decided that she wanted to push her food onto the next level, and when she made that decision there’s been no stopping her – she’s made herself into the most amazing cook, one of the best champions I’ve ever seen.”
Jane battled her way from 40 resolute contestants through to the final three and throughout the final week and alongside other incredible finalists, Billy Wright (32) and and Jack Layer (27), had to demonstrate her inspiration, skill and utter determination as the finalists undertook serious and life-changing challenges.
Over the past week viewers have seen Jane cook a celebratory dinner for Britain’s leading actresses at Bristol’s Old Vic under rising British star, chef Michael O’Hare; travel to Mexico and face three extraordinary challenges guided by acclaimed chef Enrique Olvera; and in the penultimate show, cook for the Chef’s Table, which was this year presided over by one of the world’s most influential culinary talents, Daniel Humm.
Jane is now planning her future in food. She said: “I love food, learning about food and educating other people about food. Just teaching the kids that great food does not always have to be about fat and fast food is a real joy. Before MasterChef I hadn’t considered working in the food industry but now my mind is open to all sorts of possibilities and I can’t wait to see what comes along.”