A BOLTON chef who lost her sight after a nerve illness has published a cookery book of her favourite meals to help others with vision problems.

Kim Jaye, 54, believes that using her other senses of touch, taste, smell and hearing has improved her culinary skills.

Now she she has published her own recipe book 'A Taste of Spice' to help others in her position and raise money for the Royal National Institute of Blind People.

Available on Amazon and Kindle, it includes more than 12 recipes for authentic Indian cuisine, with tips on how to cook the dishes with low or no vision.

Ms Jaye, previously head chef at fusion restaurant 'Blasé' in Egerton, hopes the book will inspire more blind and partially sighted people to get into the kitchen.

She said: “I lost my sight 25 years ago and, at the time, it was devastating.

"I had previously held several jobs and was a very busy person, but then I went totally blind almost overnight. I lost all my confidence and became very withdrawn and isolated.

“RNIB became my lifeline – especially it’s Talking Books service.Volunteering for the charity also helped me come back out of my shell and I started believing that I could do the same things that I had always done before.

“Above everything else, I was determined to cook again. Cooking is a passion for me and is very much a part of my family life and cultural heritage as an Indian. Slowly but surely, I found ways of using my other senses to prepare my favourite foods and became better at cooking. Now I’m in a much better place and I wanted to create this book to raise money for the charity that helped me so much during my darkest moments.

"“Cooking is an extremely sensory experience that isn’t dependent on sight. Everyone can enjoy cooking by using the smell, sound, taste and feel of food as it cooks. Ultimately, with the book and the classes, I want to help teach other people with vision impairment that they can challenge perceptions and cook amazing dishes with little or no sight. It’s not about what you can’t do, it’s about what you can.”

Andrea Glover, RNIB North-West network manager, said: “Kim’s book is a fantastic new resource that opens up the world of cooking to blind and partially sighted people. I had the opportunity to taste test a few of the recipes in the book, and they are absolutely amazing."

Next year Ms Jaye is launching a free cookery class for RNIB’s Connect Community.