She’s funny, gushes about food and contemplates most questions before answering them. The Australian chef, who wowed judges and Indians alike, when she whipped up aloo gobhi in MasterChef Australia in 2014, and was also the HT Brunch Cover Star in December 2019. She co-owns Antares in Goa, which survived a fire in 2019, and she has done cooking shows as well. What’s she been up to in the lockdown? She’s finally taken a break and headed back to Australia to spend time with her son, 10-year-old Phoenix, and has also come out with a book full of recipes called My Indian Kitchen. The doting single mother surprises us with her vast knowledge about Indian food and a calm yet fun vibe. One conversation later and I’m ready to try following her recipes. That’ll have to do till my next Goa trip.
What’s the best thing about being a chef?
Meeting people from all over the world and hearing their stories.
One goof-up you can now laugh about?
The raw chicken on MasterChef Australia that got me eliminated.
List three things nobody knows about you.
I cut my own hair, I don’t watch TV, and I’m quite superstitious and believe in the power of thoughts.
One relationship rule you always follow?
No expectations. Every person is different and we need to find ways to work together.
Describe your ideal first date.
Being outdoors and one with nature – fresh air and good food.
On Tinder, who would you swipe right?
Carl Cox. I recently filmed an episode with him and his energy is contagious. I love having positive people around me.
Which podcast do you always listen to?
I’ve started meditating and am listening to relaxing podcasts. I have a fast-paced life and need to handle the pressure.
What’s a health shot you swear by?
Balance. Enjoy the indulgences but get back into a healthy routine.
One book you curl up in bed with?
Motivational books. I’m currently reading Women Who Run with the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype by Clarissa Pinkola Estés.
A memorable fan…