Top Chef's Fatima Ali Shares Emotional Response to Cooking Comeback Amid Cancer Treatment: "I Am So Lucky!"

Top Chef's Fatima Ali Shares Emotional Response to Cooking Comeback Amid Cancer Treatment: "I Am So Lucky!"

Top Chef's Fatima Ali revealed what it was like to cook at Pebble Beach Food & Wine after cancer treatment.

By Alesandra Dubin

After being declared cancer free, the beloved Season 15 cheftestant Fatima Ali from Bravo's Top Chef got back to cooking in a triumphant way on April 6 at the Pebble Beach Food and Wine Festival. Fatima's lunchtime event at the 11th annual festival was known as "Goldilocks and the Three Top Chef Bears," and also featured Elizabeth FalknerTyler Anderson, and Bruce Kalman. The much-anticipated event sold out in advance at $225 a ticket, and fans positively ate it up, offering support in person and on social media.

But how did Fatima herself feel about it? In short, she felt incredible, thrilled, and overjoyed — and overwhelmed.

"Had the most incredible time at pebble beach food and wine," the chef shared on Instagram, after taking several days since the event to reflect. "I cried after service in my room because I was so overwhelmed with joy at being able to cook again." 

She added that she'd had plenty of fears going into the big moment, following her grueling cancer treatments. "I was so scared I wouldn’t be able to keep up, especially with my left arm handicap but with the help of my bff @shilpausk we kicked ass and I couldn’t be more grateful," she wrote. "I am so lucky to be able to still do what I love despite my illness."

And she added a very hopeful note for the future — something both Fatima and all of her fans can get very excited about. "I can’t WAIT till my treatment is over so I can open up my own restaurant in beautiful California and show the world all the beautiful food of Pakistan."

Photo: G9 Event Photography

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