Ashleigh is of the Dharug people from the Blue Mountains and Nepean region. Her indigenous heritage means everything to her and she loves the history and culture associated with this. Ashleigh likes indigenous cultural activities including aboriginal painting and taking part in traditional cultural ceremonies. Ashleigh’s Dad, Nan and her Aunty Edna are her role models and her Aunty Edna is an extremely active member of the indigenous community.
Ever since Ashleigh took her first home economics class in year 7 she has always wanted to become a chef and has never thought of any other career path.
Ashleigh decide to take part in the National Indigenous Culinary Institute to become a better person both in her career and her life in general and wanted to put herself out there and show her community that if you put your mind to it and have a dream you can get somewhere in your life.
Barry McDonald from Fratelli Fresh is Ashleigh’s NICI Culinary Guardian and her time so far with the Barry and his team has created a passion for Italy, the food and cultural history of the country. In 5-10 years time Ashleigh sees herself as a qualified chef and hopefully a pastry chef and wants to travel and experience the different foods of the world, especially Italy.
Ashleigh has moved into her second year of the NICI program and changed restaurant to Rockpool Bar and Grill. Her new Culinary Guardian is Neil Perry. She has enjoyed the changed in style of cooking.