Christine Ha was the first ever blind contestant to enter, and eventually win, a season of the US Masterchef series.
Chef, restaurateur and writer, the Texas local has quite the impressive resume. But losing her vision as she was in college forming the foundations of a career was hugely difficult.
Speaking to Vision Australia Radio’s Studio 1, Christine remembers feeling isolated a lonely.
“I felt a huge loss of independence and that led to feeling like I didn't know who I was anymore,” she said.
“Reteaching myself how to cook really took a lot of persistence.
“There were tears in the kitchen.
“I remember at some points thinking that I would never be able to cook again because it was just so difficult and challenging to try to use a knife or to cut vegetables or use a stove with fire and an oven when you can't see what's going on.”
She made quite the entrance during her audition on Masterchef as she walked out in front of the judges with her white cane.
Watch Christine Ha on her Masterchef season 3 audition (note: not audio described)
She proceeded to chop vegetables and taste everything before she plated up her signature fish dish.
She blew away the judges, and eventually went on to win the season. As a crowd favourite, she used her reputation to launch two Houston restaurants, a cookbook and a show called Four Senses which aims to help home cooks losing their vision.
Listen to the full interview in the player below:
For more on Christine Ha, visit her website The Blind Cook.