When did you taste your first success on television? Share in detail and tell who were the judges of the competition?
It has been many years, my first success on television was in 2011 with a show called Maha Challenge, which featured Madhuri Dixit and Chef Sanjeev Kapoor as judges; I was one of the chef contestants and went on to win the show, followed by which I found my place in this world of Indian food. So yes, I think my career first took in the year 2011 and since then, it has been a very exciting 10-11 years. I have thoroughly enjoyed sharing my love for cooking and recipes over the years with the people.
How has been your culinary journey and experience hosting the show Roti Rasta aur India?
Roti, Rasta aur India gave me the chance to travel across 20,000 kms of India, to different cities all by road and I fell in love with Indian gastronomy. As a chef, I had never realised that we have a gold mine of recipes, and the cuisines changes every 200 kms. It broadened my vision about cooking and Indian food. I also realised that recipes don’t have to be the way that I know the, which has led to me sharing very diverse recipes without boundaries because the show let me explore different communities and their style of cooking.
You are touted as India’s youngest celebrity chef. How do you feel about it?
I think that would be true some 5 years back, now I am almost 35 and there is a lot more to it than being a celebrity chef. Also, I feel like the world has really evolved credit to the digital boom and the e-commerce world that we live in. In today’s day and change, everyone is making videos and content from the comfort of their home; every household has a potential creator. So, I’d like to believe that I’m just a creator and there are multiple opportunities. Hence, I not just a chef anymore, I’d like to think of myself as an entrepreneur and somebody who is a content creator who is now also starting a cookware range. There is a lot more to it now, than just being a celebrity chef.
How do you describe your style of cooking?
I think I am cook who likes to make recipes fun, for me cooking is about playing music, enjoying the process, sometimes even dancing around my kitchen. So, it is not just a monotonous experience of making a meal. If I am going to cook, I might as well make it fun, because with the right elements cooking can be a lot of fun. That is also how Delishaas was born, it is just a wordplay for delicious, but it came up when I was looking for a word that I could relate with. When you like something a little more, when you’d like to make something again or find an incredible recipe – which you can’t just call tasty or delicious. In fact, I never thought it would become a brand. It started as just a hashtag but over the years it became someth8ing that my community started to believe in. That is how I met Roposo, and they were kind enough to indulge in my idea and look at it as a brand, not just as a hashtag. I feel lucky to have met them and partnered with them for this range.
Tell us more about Delishaas and co-creating it with Roposo?
I am a big believer of doing collaborations and finding the right partners, as an entrepreneur that is the right asset – to share your vision and idea with other people. I could not have done this on my own, Roposo is an ideal partner because they allow me to scale the brand to millions of consumers. One of their biggest advantages is that between Glance and Roposo, they have close to 200 million users and that already gives me a huge enough audience to reach out. They are also helping us with packaging, inventory, manufacturing, marketing as well as the infrastructure. I have been able to jam with them about design, we have been able to ideate with them on what the current consumer wants. We are currently starting with yellow and blue colours, with the typical Indian edge. They are pretty and stylish enough to even serve in. The partnership has been excellent, as they have also worked on co-creating other brands. They were the ones who pushed me to choose Delishaas as the name, and they believed in it. The platform understands the creator economy and that the consumer is looking for well curated, durable products. Delishaas is designed on these pillars, while ensuring that it is high quality, and we want the consumer who buys it to feel special.
What’s the next step in your career?
Currently, the calendar is chock-a-block with Delishaas, and the coming months will be spent in pushing the brand. Since, Roposo is one of the largest live entertainment platforms in India, we are planning to create a show where I am cooking live for people. I love interacting with people and I’d love to cook for them live. Apart from that, I will of course be creating content for my social media handles, while Goila Butter Chicken is also steadily expanding.
Is there a Chef you truly admire and why?
There are multiple of them, but to name a few – Chef Manish Mehrotra; Chef Sanjeev Kapoor has always been an idol, he also kick-started career and I have always held him in high regard. I have also been inspired of Anthony Bourdain, he taught to care about food from the lens of community.
Do you think being a chef is still not considered as a stable job?
I think the view has changed, 2005 was when I went to a culinary school, and it wasn’t considered the best option at the time. But now, as we are in 2022, I think people are more accepting and I know people who gave up their career as a financial analyst to become a chef. I think people truly believe in the culinary industry.
Do you think running a restaurant or creating a brand like Delishaas is an easy task?
Absolutely not, it takes a lot of hard work, patience, and perseverance to build brands. It takes a lot out of you, Roposo and my team have been working for close 18 months now. I feel that if you don’t put attention to detail on a product, I feel like it won’t live forever. I believe in creating brands that would live longer than I do, creating some value and delivering something of high quality to the customer. It will make them come back to you and understand how you’re different from the other brands.
What qualities do you believe make a good chef?
Innovation is key, you’ve to be someone who is creative. I feel innovation and skill are two pillars for you to be a successful chef, who people can admire. Apart from that, you need to love the kitchen and you’ve to be passionate about creating new recipes.
How was it being part of Master Chef Australia?
MasterChef Australia is one of the most memorable moments of my career. It was an opportunity to showcase Indian food on a global level and it didn’t only give me a platform, but also gave me a lot of confidence to share my food thoughts with everybody.
What fitness advice would you give to your fans?
Cooking healthy is something I stand for, we should all indulge occasionally but otherwise you should always eat well, as it always reflects on your mood and your body. It is essential to cook clean, cook healthy and fun nutritious food at home.
Begin typing your search above and press return to search. Press Esc to cancel.
[contact-form-7 id="7374" title="subscribe"]