Explore Leiths Diploma Open House – 5th June 2024


Emma Ryan

Chef & Spice Business Owner

London, United Kingdom


Graduate of:
Leiths Three Term Diploma in Food and Wine

Emma is a chef and entrepreneur specialising in the cuisine of Goa on India’s Western Coast. After graduating from Leiths in 2020 during the lockdown, Emma started selling her own spice blends based on her Goan heritage and this was the starting point for everything she am doing now. She currently works as a private chef, sharing her food at events and supper clubs, she teaches Goan cookery classes as a guest chef here at Leiths and her range of spices is now stocked in Selfridges. What started as a hobby from her home kitchen is now a multi-faceted food business called Yesterday’s Curry. Shortly after graduating from Leiths Emma was signed up by a literary agent and will soon be working on her debut cookbook.   

Life before Leiths
Prior to enrolling at Leiths I studied French at University before working for a number of years in tech. After moving into a more design focused role I then went on to run my own design agency for about 3 years and was working from home a lot and spending more and more time experimenting in the kitchen to unwind. I found myself at a point in my career where I wanted to make a change and retrain in something which I had developed a real passion for and which would be a lifelong skill. 

What inspired you to enrol at Leiths?: 

After researching different cookery schools in London, Leiths stood out to me immediately. I actually spent ages reading this very alumni page and being really inspired by all of the stories of notable alumni who had gone on to have amazing careers. I hesitated for about a year as it was such a big commitment but then in 2019 after going to the open day and then having an interview, the decision was made for me. Everyone at Leiths was so friendly and welcoming and I couldn’t wait to start the diploma; best decision I ever made! 

Life after graduation: 

After graduating from Leiths I tried out a few different avenues in the food industry before starting my own business. I worked freelance for several event catering companies, did work experience at Indian restaurant Kricket and have been a private household chef for wealthy families as well as being a Saturday teacher at Leiths. Most recently, alongside all of my own business ventures I am the chef in residence at a cafe in South East London, where I am responsible for providing all lunchtime food as well as being the in-house caterer for all events, showcasing my own Goan inspired dishes in the process.   

Any wise words for future grads?: 

There are so many different avenues you can go down in the food industry – I would advise trying lots of different things after graduating so you can rule out things which don’t appeal. If you want to branch out on your own and have dreams of starting a food business just go for it! There is room for everyone and if you bring something unique to the table, chances are lots of people will really buy into your idea! 

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