When dreams turn into reality, how does it feels? Surreal…absolutely Surreal!
When I started Food blogging, I was inspired (And I bet thousands of you, are) by The Chef Sanjeev Kapoor. His Cookery show on Sunday was the most awaited show to be aired on Satellite Tv. I used to dream of meeting him someday, to watch him cook in real, to taste the food that he cooked, to ask him the tips, to hear him, to talk to him…putting it simply, I was obsessed ! But the reality always hit hard and brushing asides the dreams, I used to head over to my kitchen, to cook the daily meal. Little did I knew, then, that destiny was planning something else for me 🙂
So when yesterday, Swati Sharma from StarPlus, sent me an Invitation to visit and experience a prelude to ‘Cook-Off with Sanjeev Kapoor’ where the top five ‘Zaykebaaz’ of MasterChef India 2 will recreate a dish made by Sanjeev Kapoor, on sets of MC India 2, I was skeptical of the genuineness of the email. Some assurance by her that it was for real, and later on a totally unexpected Message from Chef Kunal Kapoor, confirming it (Silly me, I wrote him my doubts and the great guy that he is, he actually responded …Thanks a ton sir !) I began a Déjà Vu kind of journey towards RK studio ( Here is my previous experience on MC sets).
There were some people from print media, News channels etc, and as we were waiting for the proceedings to began, Chef Kunal Kapoor and Chef Vikas Khanna arrived. It was a pleasure meeting them again and interacting with them on one to one basis. These guys, I tell you, are so friendly; they make you feel so comfortable with their talks and jokes.
After we moved around the sets of MC India 2, both the chefs were ready to face questions from media. We were so engrossed in their talks, we didn’t realized that it was time to welcome the Top Five Contestants or Zaykebaaz, viz; Rajendra, Joseph, Shipra, Vijaylakshmi and Shazia.
There were two special guests too, Riddhi Dogra and Raqesh Vashisth of Maryada-Lekin Kab Tak fame who arrived along with the special Guest… The Chef Sanjeev Kapoor ! I WAS TONGUE-TIED!!!
The Chef SK, addressing us, replying to our queries, sharing laughs and preparing for a ‘Cook Off challenge’, chopping herbs, giving instructions of the ‘Zaykebaaz’, and in between, answering my silly questions 😉
The cook off challenge (Please note, this is was not the actual cook off that will appear on TV this weekend) Quick snack of minced chicken, mixed with herbs and coated with soaked rice, steamed in a bamboo basket served with a fantastic dip of Fish sauce, honey, chilies, chives etc.
It was fun watching the Zaykebaz trying to match the skills and speed of SK. The Chefs took turns to taste the snacks one by one, commenting on the taste and textures. Finally we all got to taste what Chef Sanjeev kapoor and the top five contestants cooked….. Simple, innovative, quick to fix and with balanced flavors, the Kebabs coated with rice, when steamed gave an amazing look to the snack..and of course the dip also looked and tasted fabulous.
And amongst all this, do you know how much stressed out were the Masterchef judges ?? Take a look 😉
Some more rounds of Sound bytes, Radio bytes, clicking pictures with Chefs and contestants, continued for a long time and what was remarkable, that all the four Chefs were happily answering queries, sharing tips and posing for the pictures. The whole atmosphere appeared as if there was a family function being held…people sitting in groups, chit chatting, laughing and giggling, the photographers (From Star Tv and many other news channels and also many from print media) busy with their cameras plotted on tripods, trying to capture everything worth its salt ;-).
And guess who was was very happy to listen the funny and nostalgic stories of Chef Kunal ? Or grinning at the tips received on baking and cooking from Chef Sanjeev Kapoor while chatting with him ?..Of course, yours truly !!!
When Chefs were busy with media people, I got an excellent opportunity to have a hearty conversation with Rajendra Mane and Shazia. Their enthusiasm was infectious and their experiences, very inspiring! The atmosphere was so relaxed; it felt as we were chatting with friends. Talking about their past, their family, kids, their future plans, their dream projects etc, we didn’t realized that it was already the time to bid goodbye to lovely team of Masterchef India 2, the Chef Judges, contestants, the RK studio..*sigh*
I was happy that I have lived yet another dream! Feeling contented and Blessed!
Update: Watch here the Videos of the ‘Cook-Off with Sanjeev Kapoor’