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Amarinder Sandhu, 40, Chef formerly with Arth, Mumbai

Credited as one of the first chefs in the country to work in a gas-free kitchen, Chef Sandhu is known for bringing back the ancient cooking methods into her kitchen. She believes that traditional cooking on open fire gives a deeper depth of flavour that a gas cannot replicate. Her kitchen at Arth allowed her to revisit the regional recipes that she grew up eating in the north-eastern state of Assam. In her travels, she visits far-flung regions – Majuli, Shillong, Khonoma, Alleppey, Guntur and Rishikesh – to experience their traditional and diverse methods of preparing meals that call out to the soul. Each dish in her menu is inspired by the use of traditional methods coupled with new techniques of cooking. She has now established her very own food delivery service called Iktara, which is also a reflection of her belief that people crave food that comforts them, and nothing comforts you better than meals cooked in traditional methods that reminds you of home.

Thomas Zacharias, 34, Chef-partner, The Bombay Canteen, Mumbai

Named the Chef of the Year at Conde Nast Traveller Magazine’s Top Restaurant Awards, 2018, Thomas Zacharias is the head chef at The Bombay Canteen. His love for cooking developed at a very young age of 8 when he used to play sous chef to his grandmother in Kochi. In his blogs, he reminisces about how his childhood had two very strong feminine personalities which also moulded him into the kind of chef and person he is today. In order to pursue his love for the culinary arts, he completed his degree in Hotel Management from Manipal Academy in 2007, after which Chef Zacharias took a course at The Culinary Institute of America in New York. At The Bombay Canteen, his vision is to make Indians fall in love with Indian food and ingredients through his #IndianFoodMovement. While he has moved on from The Bombay Company, he continues his passion for cooking at home which can be seen on his Instagram profile.

Radhika Khandelwal, 31, Chef-owner, Fig and Maple and Ivy & Bean, Delhi

Food waste management is one of the driving forces of Chef Radhika Khandelwal’s restaurants – Fig & Maple and Ivy & Bean. Her journey into the culinary world started when she moved to Melbourne in her teens to pursue a course in hair-dressing, but ended up working part-time in a kitchen to support her education. Her love for cooking developed here and on moving back to India, she opened her first restaurant called Ivy & Bean in 2013, followed by her second restaurant called Fig & Maple in 2016. Every ingredient in her restaurant is locally sourced, as well a locally grown. Along with using native ingredients, Chef Khandelwal also incorporates zero-waste recipes in her menu, a concept which is gaining momentum in the culinary world.

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Presented by Gustasi

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