“I just love cooking and you will always find me in the kitchen anywhere I go. One of my earliest and fondest memories of food is my Mom baking cakes on Sundays and being allowed to lick the bowl and mixer clean afterward”.
“Knowledge will be your passport to wherever you want to go in the world” – true words by Chef Marco Pierre White.
I thrust myself into the hotel industry bundled up with so many hopes and dreams for myself and ready for duty. Being hired by one of the best in the industry, Four Seasons, I knew I was headed in the right direction to an amazing future. I had it all chalked out, soon after my Bachelors, 18 months of internship then I would become a commis chef and slowly grow into an Executive chef at a five-star hotel that was the ultimate goal. That was the only dream I knew when I entered the hotel industry, so naïve and just turned 19, right out of college, first time away from home and living by myself in a big metropolitan city, Mumbai.
As I slowly started my career I realized there’s more to this Food industry than five-star restaurants and Michelin stars and molecular gastronomy. There’s a whole world out there undiscovered by me, made me so curious that I started feeling claustrophobic within the walls and the basement of the kitchen. I wanted to step out and see for myself what was out there, what were the challenges. I felt I was missing out on something very important. The synchronized platings in the restaurant day in day out started becoming boring to me and I wanted to explore beyond the basement, beyond the 300 $ per person experiences. I took the risk, I moved out of the kitchen and into the administration office of the Food & Beverage Department. I learned to manage an office, handle guests, handle vendors, micro-manage almost everything that goes into that 300 $ experience that the chef didn’t have to worry about. I learned I had a passion and skill set for Photography which I later developed into Food Styling and also gave me the chance to do cover shots for the Four Seasons Hotel Magazine.
And then I decided it was time for me to leave the company and the city of my dreams and find my place back home. I started my own company ‘Indulge In’. I focused on helping upcoming restaurateurs in setting up their dream projects, working as a consultant for them. I organized regular cooking classes for working women helping them manage home and still be able to cook healthy meals for their family. I did Food Styling for many advertisements and print media and also did a film project – remake of the Hollywood movie ‘CHEF’, which is releasing this October 2017 in India.
Today the world is growing smaller and smaller with the development of technology. Food & Beverage industry is an emerging sector of our current economic society; it is one of our main links in the chain that connects this community globally. Passion for cooking hit me at a very young age owing to my Mom and my grandma’s influence. It was a skill, handed down from generations to generation and now to me. That is my heritage, I carry that with me. I would like to make a mark and give back to this global community, what was once given to me and what I have learned with time, what I’m looking for is the exposure and the experiences that can enrich what I love to do. FOOD is my business, that’s what I do.