MasterChef crowns Shelina Permalloo its 2012 winner

TV cooking show MasterChef has crowned Shelina Permalloo as its 2012 winner.

Shelina, from Tooting, south London, beat Andrew Kojima and Tom Rennolds in the show's final to become the second woman to win the title in eight years.

The 29-year-old, whose family is originally from Mauritius, said she was "completely and utterly overwhelmed".

Judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace praised her cooking, saying she brought "sunshine to a plate" and was a "very special cook".

Her winning menu was an octopus starter, mutton curry and a dessert of mango cannelloni filled with lime curd.

"I never thought it was going to be me that would win," said Shelina after lifting the trophy.

"The guys were so amazing and I just never thought it could happen to me."

And she paid tribute to her Mauritian mother's influence on her cooking: "My mum is a brilliant cook. I learnt everything from her. I'm basically her sous chef.

"She taught me to cook by intuition: never by using scales, always by sight and taste. So I developed a strong palate from a young age.

Torode said: "What Shelina has done throughout this competition is outstanding.

"She is a very special cook with an exceptional talent, who always wears a smile and cooks with care to assault the senses and bring sunshine to a plate."

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