Based in Melbourne, since 2011, Venezuelan born Keyma Vasquez Montero is best known for her recent appearance in MasterChef Australia 2022, becoming the first Venezuelan contestant to participate in the show and first Latina to reach semifinals week, landing an outstanding 4th place in one of the toughest seasons yet of MasterChef Australia.
Keyma’s participation in the show placed Latin American and Caribbean cuisines and cultures in the spotlight, her passion for cooking and Latino culture led her to become one of the most prominent Latin community representation in the media in Australia.
Throughout the show Keyma impressed the judges with her wide knowledge of Latin and Caribbean flavours and techniques, featuring 9 top recipes and wining the most immunity challenges in the season.
Since leaving MasterChef Australia, Keyma has spent her time developing her cooking skills, creating recipes to share her heritage, and collaborating with brands and local restaurants to share her knowledge in the field. She believes in the strengthening of the Latin movement and representation in Australia, by educating the audience through food.
Keyma has wore many hats during her life and she believes all of her experiences have led her to where she is now, noting her love for performing arts, she’s always been in the spotlight from a very early age, back at home she was part of the school choir, participated in Drama classes for 2 years, played Piano, and danced as a classical ballet dancer for 6 years, trained in Flamenco and Folklore dances, and was a Performer in the Venezuelan cultural group Caribay Dance in Australia for 4 years, she still dances as a hobby and part of her wellbeing routine.
Keyma graduated in 2007 as a Bachelor in Industrial Engineering and has a Strategic Management Diploma, as well as experience as an Entrepreneur, Digital Systems and Customer Journey, she’s previously launched two online businesses of her own and has helped a number of businesses and individuals reach their goals. Although she is not pursuing a career in engineering anymore she believes the skills gained often help her with her organisation and management skills within the kitchen.
Being cooking her passion she’s taken numerous cooking courses including Vegetarian, Italian, Thai cuisines, and she continues developing her skills and career by constantly researching and attending relevant training, she currently works as a Private – Guest Chef.
Keyma lives with her husband and her two beautiful children and advocates for working / returning to work mums , having a healthy work-life balance while managing a successful and fulfilling career.