Juana Bravo, born in the Community of Angahuan, in the municipality of Uruapan, Michoacan, Mexico, has cooked for more than 50 years in her kitchen and in the most prestigious kitchens in the world.
She has lectured throughout Mexico and Europe, talking about the traditional cuisine of Mexico and process of nixtamalización of the native corn.
She is craftswoman and mother, she has devoted her life to promoting the traditions of her community worldwide.
Juanita received on behalf of the whole country the award to the Traditional Mexican Cuisine, communal, ancestral and living culture, the Michoacán paradigm, by UNESCO on 16 November 2010 in Nairobi, Kenya.
Today she is one cook endorsed by the Mexican Government as Ambassadress of Gastronomy Worldwide.
Juanita tells us her story by herself:
My dad was a tour guide, someday I told my dad: why do you risk to feed them?, I support you, I was small, very small, but I tried to get good food to the people, tourists, who went to the Paricutin volcano, I tried to make food, sweep, clean single tables, so we fed people who visited us to the community. The people was very exciting and happy with our food, traditional food.
I started to cook by my grandmother, she tought me, she had sick leg and did not walk very well.. Usually I helped her to cook for whole family and for ceremonial ocassions, my grandmother knew a lot about the traditions and about the Mexican Cuisine, her name was Juana too and was my best teacher.
My passport to all the world are two colors tortillas that I prepared with much love for Mexico, love for the earth, love for the native corn and for our traditions.
My daughters are artisans and cooks too, someday they will shall inherit my biggest secrets in the kitchen.