Nadiya Hussain was overcome with emotion after being awarded an MBE in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours.
The 2015 Great British Bake Off winner has been honoured for her services to broadcasting and to the culinary arts, and told of how proud her late grandparents would be to see her recognised.
Nadiya shared a photograph of her car with the letters MBE smeared on it and wrote: “Even my car is crying tears of joy! Thank you for all the kind words and absolutely wonderful messages!
“Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine this would ever happen to me,” she said.
“I know my grandparents would be really proud, they wouldn’t understand what was going on, or what it means, but they would be proud none the less.
“I just know it ! Little old rice farmers family in the middle of nowhere with a grand daughter with an MBE! Who would have thought it?! I wish they were alive to enjoy this moment with us!”
She added: “I have had an exhilarating and exciting few years and I have done weird, wonderful and scary things. Long may it continue.
“Thanks to all the people who have supported me and believed in me and just made it all just a little bit easier. For all the love. For believing in me. Thank you!”
Before winning the sixth series of Bake Off, Nadiya was a stay-at-home mother-of-three, but has since carved out a successful broadcasting and food-writing career, starring in her own travelling cookery show called The Chronicles Of Nadiya.
She later went on to front the series Nadiya’s British Food Adventure, Nadiya’s Family Favourites and Time To Eat.
The 35-year-old was also the co-presenter of The Big Family Cooking Showdown with Zoe Ball and has been a guest panellist on Loose Women.
Nadiya is one of several celebrities who have been recognised in the Queen’s New Year’s Honours List.
TV wine specialist Oz Clarke, Snow Patrol’s Gary Lightbody and Queen drummer Roger Taylor have been made OBEs.
Radio 1 DJ Annie Nightingale and Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight have received CBEs.
Kids TV presenter Floella Benjamin and Grease star Olivia Newton-John have both been made Dames, while film-makers Steve McQueen and Sam Mendes have been given knighthoods.
Sir Elton John, who was knighted for services to music and charitable services in 1998, received the highest accolade as he was awarded the Companion of Honour.