Monthly Archives: April 2013

Season 3 of MasterChef India


Indian Television Industry is dominated by Serials which are mostly based on complex human relations and by reality shows based on either the talent of singing and dancing.


Over the last 3 years, there has been the arrival of another reality show which is based on the talent of cooking named as MasterChef India. MasterChef India Season 1 appeared on Star Plus in the year 2010-11, Season 2 in 2011-12 and Season 3 is currently being aired on Star Plus.

MasterChef India is a reality show which tests the culinary skills of the contestants. The sub title of Season 3 is ‘Kitchen Ke Super Stars’ which means the ‘Super Stars of Kitchen. Every home has a kitchen and the kitchen has its own Super Star within the premises of that very family. This programme gives an opportunity to millions of Indian women to showcase their talent of cooking infront on the whole world through the window of the TV screen. There’s another quotation which the judges on the show often repeat and it is that ‘who says that dreams/desires/wishes do not get cultivated in limitations of the kitchen.’

The concept of MasterChef is originally based on the British TV Show ‘MasterChef’. MasterChef India is the Indianised version of the British MasterChef. Amul is the main producer of the show.

Season 1 saw actor Akshay Kumar as the presenter of the show. Akshay Kumar has worked as a chef in Bangkok before embarking on a successful career as an actor in Mumbai. The judges were Chef Kunal Kapoor who works as an Executive Chef in  Leela Kempinski, Gurgaon and Chef Ajay Chopra who is an Executive Chef in Goa Marriot in Goa. The winner of Season 1 was Pankaj Bhadouria of lucknow.

Season 2 saw Chef Vikas Khanna as another judge. Chef Vikas Khanna is a highly successful Chef from New York. Chef Ajay Chopra and Chef Kunal Kapoor were also the judges of Season 2, the winner of which was Shipra Khanna of Shimla.

Season 3 has some changes in the timings of the show. It is currently being aired on Star Plus on week days and not like only on week-ends as it was in Season 1 and 2. Chef Sanjeev Kapoor has made entry as one of the 3 judges. Sanjeev Kapoor is the one who has popularized cooking shows in India. His programme ‘Khana Khazana’ was one of the earliest cooking shows in India and has been viewed by millions since a very long time. He is a very popular face on TV among the Indian audience. Chef Kunal Kapoor and Chef Vikas Khanna are the other two Judges.

The participants of the season 3 are:

  1. Aditi
  2. Devyani
  3. Navneet
  4. Doel
  5. Nisha
  6. Ripudaman
  7. Yasmin
  8. Happy
  9. Khoku
  10. Jehan
  11. Sachin
  12. IshratFive contestants have already got themselves eliminated from the show. They are Ishrat, Jenan, Sachin, Khoku and Happy.Competition is very stiff. All the present contestants are all equally talented. We have to now wait and watch who wins the title of ‘MasterChef India Season 3’.




Happy ‘Ugadi’ and ‘Gudi Padwa’



The festival ‘Ugadi’  has a very special place in my mind. It reminds me of the culture, traditions, beliefs and cuisine of Andhra Pradesh. A good amount of my life, I have lived there and this day makes me feel nostalgic. People have deep love and respect towards their traditions, rituals and beliefs.

‘Ugadi’ is the New Year festival celebrated every Year in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Maharashtra. The name  of this day or festival is ‘Ugadi’  in Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, and the name in Maharashtra is ‘Gudi Padva’.

The festival of Ugadi also represents the celebration of Nature’s bounty during Spring Season.  Spring season brings with it fresh green leaves, fruits and flowers of different colours. Spring represents new life, new beginnings, new aspirations and a fresh new approach towards living with hope and happiness. Fresh raw green Mangoes have a special significance in India. Mangoes are always worshipped and offered to God before consumed. Leaves of Mango tree are used to decorate the entrance of every house as it symbolizes prosperity. Raw Mangoes,leaves, flowers  signify fertility,  growth, prosperity and overall well-being of the family.

The the day and date of this day depends on the Lunar Calender. Among Hindus, there are two different calenders. One which is followed by the orbit of Moon [Lunar Calender] and the other follows the orbit of Sun [Solar Calender].

In Andhra Pradesh, the first day of the Hindu Lunar Calender begins with a bath early in the morning followed by worship of deities and prayers at home. People usually wear new clothes. I remember, wearing new clothes myself. The atmosphere used to be filled with the aroma of raw mangoes and an excitement of festivity.
People also visit the Temples to seek blessings for a prosperous New Year. There is a tradition of reading Astrological predictions for all Moon signs by Temple priests.

The first thing to be consumed in the morning on the day of ‘Ugadi’ is the ‘Ugadi Pachadi’ which is a syrup made with raw mangoes, neem leaves, green chilli, jaggery and tamarind. This syrup has all the five tastes:  sweet, sour, bitter and spicy. It signifies all the sweet and bitter experiences of life. Life offers experiences of different tastes. All the ingredients in the ‘Ugadi Pachadi’ is added in equal quantities so that the New Year offers experiences in equal proportion. I too have always tasted the ‘Ugadi Pachadi’ every year on ‘Ugadi’ as long as, I was there.

The day is complete with sumptuous meals enjoyed with family and friends. As no festival in India is ever complete without the preparation of traditional home-made sweets, this festival too has its own unique sweet items to be served and shared with all loved ones. Wishing everyone a very Happy and Prosperous ‘Ugadi’. May this New Year bring peace, prosperity and happiness to all.

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