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Lorraine Pascale


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Nationality: British (English)

Hair color: Black

Eye color: Brown

Date of birth: May 11 1973

Height: 5'10.5" ; 179cm

Measurements: (US) 34-24-34 ; (EU) 86.5-61-86.5

Dress size: (US) 4 ; (EU) 34

Shoe size: (US) 9.5 ; (EU) 41 ; (UK) 7

Mother agency: Storm Models - London

Fashion Shows:

Ready to wear - Spring/Summer 1993 {John Galliano}

Ready to wear - Autumn/Winter 1994 {Chanel, Hermès}

Haute Couture - Autumn/Winter 1994 {Christian Lacroix}

Ready to wear - Spring/Summer 1995 {Chanel}

Ready to wear - Autumn/Winter 1995 {Chanel, Todd Oldham}

Ready to wear - Spring/Summer 1996 {Alexander McQueen}


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She is a chef now, she has her own cooking tv show, she is quite successful :flower:


Baking hot with new BBC chef, Lorraine Pascale

My friend texted me after the first show and said: 'They're liking you on Mumsnet. You've made it, whatever the viewing figures are!'" In fact, model-turned-chef Lorraine Pascale, 38, is getting more than two million viewers for her Monday night show, Baking Made Easy. Facebook and Twitter are buzzing about her.

She's the BBC's new home-baking heroine. And sales of her accompanying book - with recipes for everything from Parmesan and poppy seed lollipops to blueberry and lemon millefeuille - are soaring. They currently stand at 150,000 copies in print - and there have been four reprints. She is number two in The Sunday Times cookery bestseller list, behind Jamie, and number six across everything. She's been inundated with commercial and broadcast offers, and her BBC series is strongly tipped to be recommissioned.

Back in the Nineties she was one of the most successful models in the world, working alongside Kate Moss, Naomi Campbell and Christy Turlington. She was the first black British cover girl of American Elle. She appeared in a Häagen-Dazs commercial and starred as a Bond girl in Robbie Williams's Millennium video.

Pascale looks pleasingly like a woman who loves her own food. "The last time I was a size zero I was probably two years old," she laughs, reminding me that models of her era were all a healthy British size 10 or 12. "I can't relate to being a beanpole."

Recording her new TV show, she could have called in favours from top designers. But she stuck with a uniform of white T-shirt and jeans: "I wanted the food to be the star of the show."

Cooking is her form of therapy, she tells me when we meet at a café near her Fulham home. "They call it 'flow', don't they, when you forget all sense of time and feel most authentically yourself? All my memories of childhood are definitely through food."

Undeniably leggy and gorgeous, she is also smart. In our interview she namechecks Malcolm Gladwell and positive psychologist Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. She's in her third year of a degree in culinary arts management and hopes to do a masters in gastronomy at the School of Oriental and African Studies. With her beauty and accent, one imagines a childhood full of picnics and ponies. But her past is more complex. Born to Caribbean parents in London in 1973, she was placed in care at three months old. Pascale was the fourth child, but her father was not her mother's husband (they were separated at the time), and she was put into care when they were


Aged 18 months, she was adopted by a white family in Oxford who had a son Jason, three years older. But then more upheaval - her adoptive parents divorced when she was three and she lived with her adoptive mother.

Like Nigel Slater, who wrote his memoir Toast about his dysfunctional childhood, there are reasons why food has always occupied such a place of comfort in her life.

"My earliest baking memory is of me at primary school, aged five, carrying a battered old tin containing the precious ingredients to make raspberry buns. Cookery classes only came round once a term but I looked forward to them more than anything else."

When she was seven her adoptive mother became ill, so she spent some time in foster homes. It was tough, she acknowledges. "The first family I was fostered by were friends from school, so that was great fun. But the second family I spent time with were deeply religious and I was made to go to church every day, which isn't necessarily top of your list when you're eight."

On screen her warmth is infectious. She leans into the camera, describing meringues as "pillowy" and Swiss roll as "squishy". But in person she can be more guarded. Does that stem from her childhood?

"It was tough but somehow I made it through, thus far. As a child you're quite resilient. I was quite angry inside but it doesn't come out until later. You just get on with it, do what you have to do. You don't know where you're going from one day to the next. But in a way I think it's been good for me. It's taught me to keep going with things. To have drive. And what's kept me going is an amazing circle of friends. They are there for me, no matter what."

Eventually she was returned to her adoptive mother. Today they are very close. "My mother has always been very honest and open, which I think is so important with children. And supportive of whatever I've wanted to do in life."

When, at 11, she gained a full scholarship to a girls' boarding school in Devon, she knew how lucky she was. "I was quite square at school. At one point I started being quite naughty, and they contacted my mother and said: 'If she continues to misbehave, we're going to take the scholarship off her and you'll have to pay back all of the money.' So basically I stopped - I didn't want to be faced with the wrath of my mother!"

Then, at the age of 16, she was spotted by a model scout in Covent Garden. Soon, she was modelling collections for Karl Lagerfeld, John ­Galliano and Chanel and shooting high-profile campaigns for Versace, Benetton and Donna Karan. And mixing with Robert De Niro and Mickey Rourke in clubs in Manhattan.

She married Polish musician Count Kaz Balinski-Jundzill in 1995 and gave birth to Ella, after whom she named her Covent Garden cake shop, Ella's Bakehouse. The marriage ended four years later. "I got married very quickly, divorced very quickly. Back to where I was before," she grins engagingly.

Today her partner is a top music industry executive. Ella's father lives in Ireland "but they are very close and have a great relationship".

By the age of 27 Pascale knew she had to stop modelling. "I felt a little bit empty, because obviously everyone judges you on your appearance, not what's going on inside. And I did struggle because I wanted to talk to people and be lively. I was quite a smiley model, there are pictures of me leaping around, and they just didn't understand it. That's when I started soul-searching for something else."

She credits her adoptive father (a lecturer at Oxford College) with her sense of drive. "My father is a language teacher, he's very, very clever and passionate about his work. And I wanted to have what he had. I'm quite tenacious and I kept going until I found it."

She did a car mechanics apprenticeship with Skoda, became a hypnotherapist and worked alongside Paul McKenna on his seminars. But nothing clicked until she enrolled on Leith's Diploma of Food and Wine course.

She learned about every aspect of food, from offal to pastry. Then worked in kitchens including Tom Aikens, Pétrus, The Mandarin Oriental, The Wolseley and Hummingbird Bakery.

Having been independent from such a young age, she found working for other people challenging. Eventually she set up her own business making celebration cakes.

Marco Pierre White, a friend from her modelling days, recommended her to Selfridges. "I became so busy I ended up renting a large kitchen."

In 2009 she opened Ella's Bakehouse, pioneering mojito cupcakes and even a limoncello one. With filming and her baking commitments, she works

18-hour days.

The fashion world has no part in her life now and she has no model friends, confessing that she couldn't even watch the Anna Wintour fashion documentary, The September Issue - "a bit too close to the nerve".

Instead she is teaching cookery skills to Barnardo's children and plans to work with TACT, a charity for children and young people involved with the care system.

"I want to get hands-on involved, not just with some fabulous party opening thing. I always think that children in that environment, if you have just one person you can talk to, who can be there when you're going through all the rubbish, it can really save you."

Some adopted children feel there's a piece of the puzzle missing. But for Pascale "one family is enough". Does she ever see her biological parents?

There is a slightly steely pause. "No, I've had no contact with them since I was adopted." What if they want to share her new fame? "I don't even know if they'll put two and two together. Bit of a long shot. If they do, I'll send them my book," she adds coolly.

Baking Made Easy is on BBC2 on Mondays at 8.30pm (and repeated on Saturday mornings). The book Baking Made Easy is published by HarperCollins.

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She has a super interesting story. 




She was given up for adoption when she was a baby in Jamaica. Her adopted parents moved her to England and then divorced. Her single mother fell ill and couldn't take care of her. She grew up in foster care. She was scouted at 16. By 23 she married a Polish Count/ Musician. She has her daughter Ella at 24. Now, she is a chef. 



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