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I enjoy eating high-end fancy food, but always come back to home-cooked food: Chef Kunal Kapoor

Winner of the prestigious Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship in the field of Food & Beverage by the Government of New Zealand, chef Kunal Kapoor talks about his love for home-cooked food and his idea of a perfect kitchen.

Written by Anjali Jha | New Delhi | Updated: July 11, 2019 1:35:33 pm
kunla kapoor Hamilton Beach, Hamilton Beach premium juicer, mixer, grinder, kunla kapoor Chef Kunal Kapoor rates tongs as a kitchen essential.

Cooking is an art which requires skills, understanding of complex flavours and, of course, the many kitchen appliances — ranging from a mixer grinder to a juicer. And one person who has mastered the art of cooking is celebrity chef Kunal Kapoor.

Recently, in the city for the special launch of a kitchen appliance, we caught up with Kapoor who has won the Gourmet Guru award by Food and Nightlife magazine and has also been awarded the prestigious Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship in the field of Food & Beverage by the Government of New Zealand.

Excerpt:

What is your idea of an ideal kitchen?

My idea of an ideal kitchen is something that is airy, spacious, has good ventilation, and good storage space which is designed according to the ingredients. Also, the stove in the kitchen should not be facing the wall, so that when you cook, you don’t face the wall but interact with the people around you.

One thing you can’t do without in your kitchen?

My knife. I sharpen my knife myself, and if it’s around, my work is faster.

Indian spices have gained popularity on a global scale. Which is your favourite spice?

To put a finger on a spice is difficult, but I like chilli. Different types of chilli add different kind of flavours in food, especially smoked chilli.

Are you a fan of exotic cuisine or find comfort in simple home-cooked food?

Both. I enjoy eating some high-end fancy food, but always come back to home-cooked dal, roti, paratha, lassi.

Which is your favourite street food in Delhi?

I enjoy all types of chaat, and also eating from Kanshi Ram ke Chole Kulche in Rajouri Garden.

One thing your mother struggled with in the kitchen during your childhood? 

For the longest time, we didn’t have a mixer grinder. So the first time when we bought one, it was a huge moment for my mom and aunts, as we used to live in a joint family. Also, one of the challenges at that point was ventilation. So when we moved to a bigger house, I remember that they were happy with the kitchen space.

How important is a mixer grinder in an Indian kitchen? How often do you use one?

Every time I step into my kitchen, I realise there is always some use of the mixer grinder. I like the mixer grinder by US brand Hamilton Beach (for whose launch he was in the city) as it is a great piece of equipment, and a premium mixer grinder even for people who use professional style cooking at home.

It has always been in the commercial space ever since I started my career, and I am happy that they have now entered the professional space, especially in India.

What is the most important thing in your kitchen?

Tongs. I like them because they come in handy in the kitchen when handling something hot.

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