Taking on a spicy gourmet life

MasterChef Australia fame Sandeep Pandit on changing perceptions of the West about Indian food

By Author  |  Published: 6th Dec 2019  10:23 pmUpdated: 7th Dec 2019  3:23 pm
Jazz of flavours

Experimenting numerous possibilities in the trajectory of acquainting traditional wine drinking to fusing Indian chatpata ‘pani-puri’ is now talk of the town. The tangy concoction melds seamlessly with the peachy flavoured sparkling wine, tantalising the Indian palate for all that’s rejuvenating. The well-known Indian face to hit Top 10 in MasterChef Australia season 11 is Sandeep Pandit, the man behind unleashing his originality to showcase the long-lost techniques of Indian cuisine.

His expedition with food started at the age of 8, deciphering hacks from his mother made him fall deeper in love with food. Moving back from Kashmir to Bengaluru inculcated methods of cooking from north and south.

“Food is not just nourishment, it’s something very mystical to me. The West contemplates India as a Butter chicken nation, I’m thriving hard to change that, we’re a hodge-podge of dosas, paranthas, sea food and lots more. My collaborating with Jacob’s Creek to revolutionise something new was indeed special,” says Sandeep.

Jazz of flavoursFrom an ordinary IT employee to the hallowed grounds of MasterChef, the chef has carved a niche for himself. His Lemon pepper chicken not only won hearts, but got him an immunity at the competition. “I was so thrilled when I got selected, the moment I got the apron, I was in awe. It was a great experience learning from my favourite culinarians.

Being part of Top 10 was a dream come true, it was easy to comprehend things. Opportunities like these do not just come and go, I worked hard day and night to be where I am today. Gary Mehigan is my guru, I’m forever indebted to him. He is inspirational, no celebrity chef endorses Indian food the way he does,” exclaims Sandeep.

When asked about his future plans, he says, “As clichéd as it sounds, I belong to India, highlighting our cuisine and the smoking techniques using coal for punching more flavour, goes back to thousand years,” he adds. Talking about opening a restaurant, Sandeep says, “Yes, I definitely want to open my own restaurant and it’s going to be old school, a potpourri of barbeque and biryani, my love for Hyderabad will be reflected by my cooking.”

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