Thank you so much for visiting this page! It means a lot to me that you are reading more about the person behind all the messy development, photo shoots and recipe writing here on Fats of Life!
My name is Monya and I started blogging as a hobby after my husband and I switched to the keto lifestyle in early 2018.
This website was originally called MUD & LOVE – and there is pretty cool story behind that bizarre title, but I won’t go into that now. However, I guess its worth mentioning that it was shortlisted as one of the top 8 culinary blogs in the UK in 2019 (UK Blog Awards). I changed the name at the end of 2019 after Funnyman suggested ‘Fats of Life’, which I simply adored. I trademarked it immediately.
I have a ‘day job’ (I am a self-employed culinary consultant) but I started this blog as a side-line gig because I could not bear to see one more boring post on Instagram of people eating only eggs, bacon and soggy tuna salads while on keto! I used my knowledge (after completing Professor Tim Noakes’ Nutrition Network Advisor Training that specialises in LCHF for optimum health and weight-loss) – along with my skills and imagination in the kitchen to showcase how wonderfully decadent, interesting and exciting my husband and I eat at home – all while staying below 20g net carbs per day!
My husband, Mark (referred to as Funnyman throughout the site) and I started the ketogenic lifestyle around the last week of May in 2018 – and lost all the weight we wanted to in less than 6 months – and kept it off! Best of all, we both experienced (and continue to enjoy) increased energy and mental clarity – along with excellent BMIs.
You can read more about our journey here if it interests you. In the meantime, I want to encourage you to have a quick read through the Recipe Success page before delving into the hundreds of recipes on this site. It will ease your mind on how the recipes were developed, how I calculated the macros and how you can avoid any duds in the kitchen.
I have started shooting cooking videos (thanks to the ‘Rona lock-down which gave me the ‘gift of time’!). Be sure to check them out on my YouTube channel. They are all patiently shot and editing by Funnyman (and watch them to the end – the bugger likes to slip in blooper reels which I think may be my claim to fame ahead of my cooking!)
A little more about me…
For as long as I can remember, I have had a love affair with food. Prepping, poaching, peppering, cooking, chopping, snipping, salting. It has always been about food: my very first love. As a teenager, I watched my friends spend their pocket money on clothes and CD’s, while I bought food magazines and saved up for recipe books. When we all started working and earning money, they bought beautiful shoes, while I spent my hard-earned moolah hosting dinner parties.
In my early thirties, and after many years in graphic design, I completely switched careers and enrolled in culinary school. I never did so with the intention of becoming a chef in a restaurant (I still can’t be sure if it was because I cry if people shout at me, the infamous chef’s-ass, or simply the lousy hours) – I did it to learn more and get better. After graduating culinary school, I landed a great role as a development chef at the central test kitchen of a fantastic restaurant group in Cape Town (where I am originally from).
It was a short stint, because a little while later our lives changed completely… Funnyman, the dogs and I left South Africa and moved to the UK…
After moving to the UK, I worked at Heston Blumenthal’s Fat Duck Experimental Kitchen in Bray for 3.5 years. It was a very special time working with a very talented team. My role in the early days involved dish development (I fondly recall a project where I had to make bubblegum from scratch. It had to look like spaghetti and taste like apples!) along with recipe testing & styling. Over the years, it evolved into a recipe editing and media project management role. Now, as a self-employed consultant, I am very fortunate because I still get to see my homies at the Duck several times a month as I consult as the Group’s content editor (non-keto related) on many exciting projects. You can read a bit more about my professional career here.”
*IN THE NEWS*: My cookbook KETO KITCHEN (published by Kyle Books, London) is now available to purchase in paperback or e-book. Click here to read more about where it can be purchased (where ever you are in the world), plus some of the fantastic reviews that have been coming in!
I live with Funnyman (yes, he really is a travelling, professional stand-up comedian!) Mark, and our two beautiful pooches in Berkshire, England. I founded SOIGNÉ Consulting in early 2017 and I am kept very busy by clients from all over the world generating content and editing recipes. Every summer, I fill the role as a private chef to my favourite international athlete over the Queens and Wimbledon Tournaments (non-keto related) and when I am not pottering around in the kitchen or hard at work being Funnyman’s comedy muse, I can be found in front of my easel where I satisfy my other passionate hobby – but that’s a whole other website…