About the Author
Growing up in New Orleans, the flavors, smells, sights and sounds of the Crescent City permeated every aspect of Illya Roberts’ life. A New Orleans native with a family heritage in the dining industry, Illya has “Big Easy Cuisine” in her DNA. She is the published author of Twelve Months of New Orleans Cooking, launched in April 2010. Her book demonstrates how to create easy Creole favorites with fresh, seasonal ingredients that complement events, holidays and celebrations throughout the year.
Ms. Roberts comes from a long lineage of New Orleans cookery, as her family owned and operated restaurants and catering companies in the Big Easy.
Illya attended Delgado Culinary Institute Chef Apprenticeship Program in New Orleans and completed her externship under various New Orleans executive chefs and professional caterers. While working as a pastry chef by day in Metairie, Louisiana, she worked as a Sous Chef in the evenings at Saia’s Restaurant in Kenner, LA. Shortly afterward, she broadened her experience even further at Pichon Catering, where she prepared gourmet, Kosher and specialty foods.
Illya continued her culinary training at the U.S. Army Quarter Master School as a Food Service Specialist in Fort Lee, Virginia and then abroad in Butzbach, Germany, where she prepared fulfilling and tasty meals and supervised catering services for over 1,500 military personnel.
After leaving the Army, Ms. Roberts moved to Dallas, Texas and pursued a career in the broadcast entertainment industry and obtained an MBA. Illya has continued to nurture her culinary talents by also training as a Sommelier in 2012, which compliments her love for the flavors of New Orleans with the launch of her book, Twelve Months of New Orleans Cooking.
Illya’s new book captured local attention and as featured on 5 Talk Street on NBCDFW. Her live stage cooking demonstrations at Taste of Dallas and Visions, The Women’s Expo as well as local recipe demos and book signings have generated rave reviews.
Combining her culinary expertise with her business acumen, Illya continues to refine her talent and share the legacy of New Orleans-style dishes that are easy to prepare, easy to cook and easy to enjoy!