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Winning Next Level Chef meant much more than a trophy for Pyet DeSpain.
Instead of following traditional and classic trained dishes, the chef chose to highlight native culture and indigenous ingredients to the masses. Spoiler alert: It helped her win big.
“Growing up in a family of cooks and restaurant owners, I learned to really love the process of creating bold flavors, but I didn’t see Native American and Mexican American female chefs being highlighted or awarded,” she exclusively told E! News. “To have the ability to share that passion with the world on a big platform was a dream come true for me.”