The question Ana gets asked most often is “when do you sleep”?! To call Ana busy is quite the understatement. Her collection of hats is extensive and she wears them well. As a TV personality, lawyer, chef, thrice published author, brand ambassador for IMUSA (the largest Hispanic Brand in the country), gourmet editor for Venue Magazine, creating and developing her Skinny Latina® food line and launching her Million Dollar Marinade, the woman does not stop! Add to that her social and philanthropic calendar and her number one priority and self-described “obsession”, daughters Kati (22) and Beba (21) you’ll wonder how she does it all!
Ana grew up in a Cuban household in sunny Miami, Florida, where she was her mother’s apprentice in the kitchen and discovered her passion for the art of cooking. Like many young Cuban girls, Ana was given a well-known Cuban cookbook as a gift by her mother. While she cooked from the book regularly, she always found it difficult and not very user friendly. As the time approached for Ana to teach her own daughters the way around a Cuban kitchen, she looked in vain to find an authentic Cuban cookbook that would appeal to a younger generation, and so she decided to write it herself. Ana self-published her first cookbook, “Cuban Chicks Can Cook”, as both a tribute to her mother and a legacy for her daughters; the book quickly sold out in bookstores. Upon discovering her unique voice and easy authentic recipes, Ana was contacted by a large publishing house and commissioned to write her second cook book ”Sabor! A Passion for Cuban Cuisine“. Her third cookbook for the famed Versailles Cuban Restaurant in Miami is due out this fall.
Since being voted Miami’s “hottest chef” by Eater.com in 2011, Ana has made quite the splash in the world of media. Ana regularly appears on local, national, and international television. She has been featured in Latina magazine, Strategy Magazine (cover), In The Loop (cover), as well as numerous newspapers and online publications. She has appeared on The Today Show, CNN en Español, Better TV, CBS’s The Couch, New York Live, Telemundo’s Buenos Dias, Telemundo’s “Acceso Total” and Global Fox’s Utilisima network. Ana has been a featured chef at the South Beach Wine and Food Festival where she co-hosted the Fun and Fit event for the American Diabetes Association alongside Food Network Chef Robert Irvine. She also co-hosted and created the menu for Goya’s Midnight Brunch with celebrity chef and friend Art Smith. Never afraid of a challenge Ana competed in the 2013 Swine and Wine event at the Biltmore Hotel walking away with third place and vowing to come home with the trophy next year!
Ana is involved with Macy’s Culinary Council and hosts cooking demos throughout the country for events such as Hispanic Heritage Week and organizations like the American Heart Association. Ana’s recipes have been featured in many publications and social media outlets as well as Target.com. She has been a keynote speaker at Slow Food events and has spoken at several Hispanic Leadership conferences throughout the country.
Ana made her reality TV debut on Bravo’s The Real Housewives of Miami in 2012 and is currently filming Season 3. Her unique wit, particular brand of humor, and no-nonsense unpretentious attitude has made her a fan favorite.
Her gratitude for being blessed with two healthy daughters is the main reason Ana dedicates her time to children’s issues and is devoted to raising awareness and funds for organizations close to her heart, such as the American Diabetes Association, the American Cancer Society, and Amigos for Kids. She serves on the board of the Jackson Memorial Hospital Guardian Angels and develops gluten-free recipes for Autism Speaks.
Ana is currently working on a fourth cookbook aimed at empowering women of all ages to feel comfortable in their own kitchens and in their own skin. She is on a mission to debunk “that silly notion” that cooking is slave labor and that it somehow degrading or demeaning. She believes that cooking is an art form, a gift one can develop, a skill that is easy and rewarding to hone, and that feeding someone is perhaps the greatest expression of love.
Ana will continue to share her wealth of practical culinary knowledge peppered with her saucy anecdotes so that everyone can experience the satisfaction of creating a wonderful meal and have a great time doing it! She is eager to show others what her friends and family already know – that no matter what Ana cooks, there are never any leftovers- and most importantly that if she can do it- you certainly can too!
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