Sanjeev Kapoor, the celebrity Chef from India needs no introduction. Conferred with the ‘Best Chef of India’ award by the Government of India and several other firsts to his name, he is living his dream of making Indian cuisine the number one in the world.
Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, in an exclusive interview, talks to Dubaimoms.com about his passion for cooking, his triumphant journey as a Chef and his delectable restaurants in Dubai.
1. How did your passion for cooking begin and when did you feel that you should become a chef?
My family is a little different. As a kid, I’d seen my late father in kitchen, cooking and helping mom. I saw my elder brother dish out delicacies every now and then. So cooking by men was very normal at home and in fact it was a stress buster for us. I had joined hotel management by accident. It wasn’t really planned that way. Being a chef during those times was not glamorous but since I had the habit of doing things against the norms, I chose to become a chef.
2. Your show, Khana Khazana was the longest running cookery show in the Television industry! How has this show changed your life?
Khana Khazana started in 1993 and went on for 18 long years, non-stop. It finally came to an end in 2011 after I launched my own Food Channel FOOD FOOD. TV is indeed a very powerful medium and whatever I am today is because of the show Khana Khazana. It had been a wonderful journey, there was no precedence and the show and I glued together. I owe a lot to it.
3. Are you doing any other shows on the TV?
Yes, I have a Food channel of my own called Food Food, for which I do a signature program called ‘Sanjeev Kapoor’s Kitchen’. There is also a new series that I am doing called ‘Out of the World’, for which I am currently shooting in Australia. In the recent past, I have done ‘Masterchef India Season 3’ on Star Plus and ‘Sanjeev Kapoor Kitchen ke Khiladi’ on Sony as well.
4. Your first restaurant in Dubai, Khana Khazana, was an instant hit. You have now gone ahead to open 2 more restaurants in Dubai – Options and Signature. What made you choose Dubai to bring in your brands?
I always say Dubai is my second home. People find it strange that besides having my restaurants here, I also endorse few local brands. Familiarity with this place, and the love of people, convinced me that I can never go wrong with Dubai as my choice. Khazana was in fact my first restaurant not only in Dubai but anywhere in the world including India. The success of Khazana prompted me to open two more outlets in Dubai – Options and now Signature by Sanjeev Kapoor. I have tried to upgrade the offerings and the people of Dubai have always lapped up my efforts and I shall be ever grateful to them for this.
5. Finally, how do you add your SIGNATURE to the dishes you create? Is there a secret that you would like to share?
When I got the opportunity to do Signature, I had a very clear picture in my mind about what I need to offer. The cuisine at Signature is predominantly Indian-fusion, served artistically in a contemporary style.
My secret signature is to always try and adapt my dishes to the needs and tastes of the local market. I always instruct and train my team to bring in a little difference by tweaking the recipe from its authentic/traditional mode to give it a new twist, and it has always worked.
Exclusive Interview by Dubaimoms.com.