PappaRoti: Quite Avoidable

We visited PappaRoti in DLF Mall of India in Sector 18, NOIDA. The restaurant was empty at 2pm on a Saturday afternoon in a mall though the interiors were well done, clean and comfortable. We started with coffee and light eats, proceeding to a light lunch after our meeting was done.

The Classic Bun (INR 195++) is excellent.

The staff are warm, friendly, untrained, ineffective and do not understand hygiene. The manager doesn’t appear to prioritise hygiene either.

Our waiter sneezed into his hands, in front of us and the manager, rubbed them against each other, then proceeded to handle food, cutlery and credit card machine. I’m afraid that makes it my last visit. Rule of thumb is, it’s probably much worse in a private area, that which is being done in a public area. For instance, if the restrooms are unclean, the kitchen is likely worse.

Our waiter also cleared our table, including unfinished beverages. Denied doing so on being informed.

The inside of the Classic Bun (INR 195++) is mostly hollow and is a treat.

The classic bun (INR 195++) is awesome and must be tried once. It’s buttery, crisp, soft, warm, comforting and ridiculously delicious all at once, not to mention the flavours of coffee and caramel lurking in the background.

It’s uniqueness lies in its excellent crust and the very hollow insides, much like a Pizza Express dough ball. Our coffee (Black, INR 145++) was average.

The Chicken Keema Chow (INR 525) was disappointing.

We tried the Chicken Keema Chow (INR 525++). It was essentially half a loaf of bread, 4-5 tablespoons of chicken keema and perhaps 6 potato wedges. The chicken keema was peppery, I could discern some salt and that was it for most part. The bread wasn’t too fresh either, and had begun drying around the edges and the insides – none of the joy that one would expect from the crust of a recently baked loaf of bread.

The rest of the menu comprised the usual suspects of dal makhani, butter chicken and biryanis among others, none of which we tried.

The interiors at PappaRoti are well done and inviting.

I spoke to a couple seated at an adjoining table, who had ordered two portions of Chili Chicken Gravy with Veg Hakka Noodles (INR 399++). Surprisingly, their identical orders were delivered separately, with perhaps a 10 minute gap between each. They didn’t like their food much, nor the service. What I saw of the portions were quite small – barely a few mouthfuls of chicken and noodles.

PappaRoti is unreasonably expensive, fails to properly deliver food, hygiene and service (they levy a 10% service charge) and is best avoided until they’re able to figure things out.



Seven Chillies and a Lemon

I saw some shrivelled chillies and some lemons lying about this morning, reminding me of the very common sight, especially in north India, of a lemon strung up with seven green chillies, usually at the doorway or entrance to a building or home. Sometimes, they’re even seen hanging on street food carts and vehicle bumpers. You’ll also find decorative pieces on Amazon in metal and ceramic depicting the same objects.

That they were for good luck, or to ward off back luck, I knew, but that was all. That decided the topic of today’s post – seven chillies and a lemon.

A little digging found me reading about the sister of a revered Hindu goddess, Alakshmi, the elder sister of Lakshmi, who most of us know of. Elder, because Vishnu created her before creating Padma, or Lakshmi. At the time, Vishnu was engaged in creating a dual aspect to the universe – good and evil. Due to her being elder, Alakshmi is also known as Jyestha (the elder). [1]

As the story goes, she married a sage named Duhsaha, who after seeing his wife’s distressed behaviour around all that was good and virtuous, happened to meet with the great sage, Markandeya, who narrated his problem and was given a specific list of the types of places he could visit with his wife and the types of places he mustn’t visit with her. As expected one list is all those deemed pious and holy, and the second, all else. [1]

Also known as Nirrti [2], Alakshmi has mention in Hymn 10-059 of the Rigveda, where she is implored to depart. [3]

Per folklore, the two sisters once asked a merchant which of them was more beautiful. The merchant, not wanting to anger either, said Lakshmi was beautiful when she enters a home and Alakshmi, when she leaves it. Consequently, both are respected and acknowledged, though only Lakshmi, is welcomed. [4]

The sweets that Lakshmi is said to like, are placed within a house so she enters. The sour and pungent flavours that Alakshmi is said to favour are placed outside the house, so she is satiated and has no desire to enter. [4]

The correct number of each, is apparently seven chillies and one lemon, though I have no reference for this.

Did you know this? If you know more, please do share in the comments below.


  1. Linga Purana, J.L. Shastri, Chapter 6
  3. Rig Veda, Ralph T.H. Griffith (translation)
  4. Myth = Mithya: Decoding Hindu Mythology, Devdutt Pattanaik

Lunches are Back at Singh Sahib

Singh Sahib is a Punjabi restaurant at the Eros Hotel, Nehru Place, New Delhi that dishes out food from pre-partition Punjab, a culturally richer and more diverse version of the state we know today, much larger as it was then from multiple perspectives. It is one of the few restaurants I’ve seen that I can confidently say differentiates itself from the thousands of other similar restaurants, almost purely through culinary means.

What sets Singh Sahib apart is its use of spices, the likes of which I haven’t seen in many commercial kitchens, and it’s always a pleasure to revisit this restaurant, which Indu and I did for lunch this past weekend.

We did indulge ourselves a bit during lunch; starters, followed by dal and roti, and found the food mostly unchanged, and definitely in a good way. Now that lunches are 50% of the regular menu price, this would be a great time for you too to visit this restaurant and try some of their very different fare.

Columns Culture

Goa On My Plate

FOR MOST HOLIDAY-SEEKERS, GOA is little more than the go-to place for beaches, booze and never-ending bashes. Am absolutely not denying that. It is that too. But as an artist I was also familiar with another Goa. The Goa of Francis Netwon Souza’s paintings. Souza’s Goa was anything but sunny and Pina Colada-framed as he delved into the deep psycho-geography of his native place, creating miasmic, people-less landscapes where church spires and domes seemed to be colliding with the arches of common homes. Souza’s Goa was a turbulent place where cultures and religions collided against each other. Thankfully there was also Mario Miranda whose brilliant caricatures of his fellow Goans infused another layer of wit and self-deprecation into the Goa I knew. This time however my journey to Goa introduced me to a delightful aspect of the area that I wasn’t too familiar with.

It was an amazing happenstance that brought us to the kitchen of Odette Mascarhenas who is an author, food historian and food curator of Serendipity Arts Festival that I had gone to attend. As a food-lover it was lovely to chat up and taste some of the dishes Odette was showcasing under her ‘Tityache Khabbari’ project of the Serendipity Arts Festival. Literally translated it means ‘news from the marketplace’ but the project sought to explore the intricate network of veins that connected the many different communities of Goa. So in a sense the news from the marketplace was that Goa is neither a Portuguese Catholic monolith nor a Konkan Saraswat-dominated pyramid as many Hindutva revivalists would have us believe. Instead it was a beautiful mosaic of cultures and food habits that was in a constant state of osmosis where each borrowed and absorbed from the other.

We started our meal with ‘Sol Kadhi’ which is a wonderfully refreshing and visually alluring pink drink. It’s made with coconut milk and dried kokum, a mangosteen family berry responsible for the colour of the drink. Then came ‘Bharille Bangde’, a green masala stuffed whole Mackeral fried with a coat of rava. Most of Goa’s fish recipes, Odette tells me, can be traced back to Gaud Saraswat Brahmins who as myth and legend point out were brought and settled in the area by Parshuram, the sixth avatar of Vishnu. Some of the Gaud Saraswat Brahmins also converted to Christianity and formed a composite community within a community of ‘Brahmin Catholics’ known locally as the Bamonns.

A dish that I was neither familiar with nor had had anything even closely resembling it was ‘Ambade Ros’. Ros is a curry made with hog plums (found only in the region and look like small raw mangoes), coconut and jaggery. The name ‘ambade’ also has a common etymology to ‘amba’ which is the word for mango. The deliciously sweet and sour Ambade Ros is made during the non-fish eating months (mostly Shravan) when the other communities turn to dried fish as their staple.

‘Khatkhate’ is another Gaud Saraswat Brahmin dish that is as ingenious as it is frugal. Made with toor dal and leftover vegetables, coconut milk, kokum and teppla (a pepper-like spice that’s native to the region) Khatkhate is a uniquely spiced dish closest to a vegetarian alternative one can think of to the Hyderabadi Haleem.

If there is one thing that is common to all the community kitchens of Goa it is the coconut. There was nothing in our elaborate four-course meal that did not have coconut in it, except perhaps the tea and the Vindaloo (which you will learn later is universally misspelt). Most homes had and still have their own coconut trees to support this excessive dependence on the fruit. Odette tells me this was because milk was not so freely available in the old days which is why coconut milk became such a widely used substitute.

One sub-group—actually a collection of many similar communities—that Odette calls the Hindu-centric people because they were distinct from both the Catholics and the Gaud Saraswat Brahmins. One their identifiable feature was the coarse texture of their ground masalas which were unlike the fine pastes of the Brahmins and the Catholics. This was largely because the more affluent communities had kitchens where whole families got together to grind spices while those living on the border areas tended to live in nuclear family setups with fewer hands to grind spices.

Geographically these communities were located on periphery of Portuguese-administered Goa in the areas between Perne and Canacona of today. Their food was simpler with perhaps a hint of aspiration as they tried of prepare and serve food in the style of the more affluent Gaud Saraswat Brahmins and the Roman Catholics. As a result they had a gamut of preparations that are similar yet different. Odette asks me to taste a prawn cooked inside a banana leaf that she says is suggestive of the culinary aspirations of the other less prosperous communities of Goa.

Being in Goa how could we forget the world-famous ‘Vindaloo’ which Odette corrects me is the corrupted form of actual ‘Vindalho’. “Vindalho was something brought in by the Portuguese,” she says, “it was a combination of the words ‘vin’, ‘alho’ and ‘ho’ which translated as wine, garlic and in-the-style-of. Because they used to marinate their meats with some bay leaves and salt, a lot of wine and garlic and carry it on their caravels to wherever they were travelling, like pickled meat. But when they began to inter-marriage and conversions took place the locals could not stomach a bland preparation. So they recreated a dish where they used pork and they called a ‘Vindalho’ and added a lot of spices.” There are many preparations where the Roman Catholics have taken bits from the Portuguese and some bits the Hindus. A good example of this is the ‘Sanna’. ‘Sannas’ are soft-steamed rice cakes that use toddy for leavening much like the Appam of Kerala, though in appearance they’re closer to the Idli. The sour-ish Sannas are best had with Vindalho as its hot spicy flavour is tempered by them. Odette also makes me sample a ‘Gahve’ which looks like a soft Dosa but is the made of rice flour like Sanna but without the toddy.

The osmosis of food and cooking styles was never a one-way street. Many things that the more affluent communities saw and liked they brought to their own kitchens. The ‘Shagoti’ gravy for example was a chicken dish of the Hindu-centric people that became the ‘Xacuti’ of the Catholics. Today however Xacuti is like the ‘Roghan Josh’ of Goa, it’s cooked in most Goan households and is loved by all. The ‘Sausage Pulao’ of the Catholics is another mysterious dish whose origins are still not very clear. “There is an interesting debate about whether the Sausage Pulao came in because of the ‘Biryanis’ of the Muslims or the ‘Arroz’ that came with the Portuguese. But my supposition is that because it is mixed with the rice, cooked with the rice in the style of the Portuguese, because the Portuguese had a lot of seafood in their Arroz, it is the latter rather than the former. But unlike the Portuguese seafood Arroz Goans never made a rice dish with fish, it was always rice and fish curry,” says Odette.

Among the Roman Catholics a sweet basket or ‘ojem’ was distributed at the time of weddings. This basket contained ‘Dodol’, ‘Doce’ and ‘Bol’ which unlike the khoya-dominant sweets of north India are all made with different permutation combinations of three key ingredients: rice flour, coconut milk and jaggery. I especially loved ‘Bol’. The colour of a coconut shell it is a baked sweet bread made with rice flour, coconut, jaggery and toddy and has a unique hard and brittle texture. It’s an ideal tea snack that’s biscuity in appearance but tastes yum like nothing else. Since am blessed with not just one ‘sweet tooth’ but a whole set of ‘Sweet 32’ I ventured deeper into the world of Goan desserts and discovered subtly flavoured ‘Mangane’, a kheer made with chana dal, sago… and yes you guessed right… coconut milk and jaggery.

It was indeed a serendipitous find, finding food in an arts festival. But it was worth all the three hours or so I spent eating and chatting with Odette. Thanks to it, I now have another, new and very different picture of Goa in my mind.

Dhiraj Singh is an artist, arts columnist and TV personality. He has shown his works at art shows in India and abroad. More about him can be found at


Little Saigon: Disappointing

Remember Blue Ginger? It was a disaster that claimed to serve Vietnamese food, while actually dishing out food that was somewhat reminiscent of Vietnam, in the usual 5-star tradition of trying to please everyone. After it (thankfully) shut down, the chef there opened up Little Saigon, in Hauz Khas market about 2 years ago. I’ve wanted to visit ever since, but never got around to it.

We visited last weekend and aren’t likely to visit again, nor recommend it to you.


Veg Noodle Salad (255). Excellent. Though they assumed that non-vegetarians won’t order a vegetable salad and had already added soya sauce to it, instead of the fish sauce I would have liked.

Chicken Pho (300). Below Average. Came in a borosil bowl, very weak stock with the abundance of cloves within overpowering everything else. Included rice noodles, vegetables and a meagre amount of shredded, boiled chicken without flavour.

Banh Mi (485). Absolute rubbish. The chef recommended this and I should have checked the price before ordering. While the bread was excellent (amazing, really – soft inside, beautifully crusty outside), this wasn’t anything like the Banh Mi one expects. There was literally a tablespoon or so of vegetable filling in a 5 inch baguette. with perhaps a teaspoon or two of over salted pork. Quite a rip off, when one considers the Subway a few steps away would have delivered far more value and flavour in far less. Yes, I’m comparing a Subway to a restaurant – that’s how bad it was.

Banh Mi: The baguette was excellent, though the whole was over priced and under whelming. This was the chef’s recommendation.

Roast Pork Belly (540). Low quality and inedible. If I’m to pay 540 rupees in a 14 cover restaurant for a portion of pork belly, I’d like better quality or better cooking please. We were served over-salted, flabby, unpressed pork belly with nothing to redeem it.

The roast pork belly was flabby, over-salted, over priced and close to inedible.

Sticky Rice (80). Good, but a tiny portion. The rice was ordered to accompany the pork and it was nice, though about 3 tablespoons in all.


The lone waiter was on his phone most of the time, looking up to answer any questions (on the second or third try) and then going back to his phone. He didn’t have much English or Hindi, ignoring anything he didn’t understand, returning to his phone when in doubt.

The chef/owner was condescending, disruptive and uncooperative to the point of rudeness. She objected to everything including the order, which I had to finally insist upon. There may have been language/communication issues behind this. It is also possible she was fed-up of customers complaining after order delivery.

Every dish came separately and not as ordered, effectively ruining the meal.

I didn’t leave a tip, a departure from my usual practice of 15%.


14 covers with no thought towards ergonomics, comfort, utility or indeed anything other than cramming 14 covers in there.

Give me a small, cramped restaurant with horrible service, an overpriced menu, a rude chef and great food and I’ll kiss his/her hands and gratefully eat whatever they slam upon my table.

Little Saigon serves food that’s not only nothing close to what it is supposed to represent, but is badly cooked too, along with severely deficient service, grumpy attitudes, cramped interiors and an overpriced menu. I suggest staying away or if you’ve been to Vietnam, try their menu once. It’ll be cheaper than stand up comedy for the family.


The Diplomat’s Table

And there I was, holding a fork bearing a clump of steaming risotto, trying to pay equal attention to the textures in the rice, the points of view wafting between the seated nine and being careful not to forget the wine. The risotto was perfectly done, not too mushy nor too hard, neither too cheesy or at all greasy and it went perfectly with the glass of white at my side.

I had walked into my host, Alessandro’s home, 20 minutes late, hoping he hadn’t started cooking, looking forward as I was to observing an Italian cook a quintessentially Italian dish in an Italian home. Commercial food at the end of the day is mass produced and cannot hold a candle to good home cooking, as much as they might dim the lights and glorify the chef. Fortunately, Alessandro hadn’t started on the risotto and a few minutes later, invited me into his kitchen.

A steel stockpot lay bubbling on the stove, a pile of frizzy, grated parmesan in a bowl alongside a little chopping board with sliced porcini mushrooms and another bowlful of soaked, drained and chopped mushrooms, just below a shelf with a glass container full of amber liquid – soaking saffron. The oven was cold and atop it was an aluminium roasting tray containing a thick tenderloin, tied with string, sprigs of rosemary jutting forth, the bottom of the tray covered with a roiling mixture of juices, wine and olive oil.

Under Italian law, only cheese produced in certain provinces may be labelled “Parmigiano-Reggiano”, references to which can be found as early as 1348 in the writings of Boccaccio.

Beside it was a stack of plates with what looked like east European design, which I couldn’t help but fondle. “That Czechoslovakian dinner set was a present from my mother when I entered the diplomatic services”, said my host, noticing my interest.

Zwiebelmuster or Blue Onion is a fine porcelain tableware pattern for dishware that first started production in the 18th century in Germany, and was modelled after a pattern first created by Chinese porcelain painters.

In another corner was a kitchen scale laden with half a pack of Carnaroli rice. “I’m cooking for 10 people, so it’s 700 grams of rice”, said Alessandro, as he removed his jacket and stood in the middle of the kitchen rolling up white shirtsleeves. Preparing to make the first course of the evening, he quickly made the transition from diplomat to cook.

Carnaroli is the most commonly used rice in Italy, has a longer grain and keeps its shape better than the more commonly known, Arborio rice. Available on Amazon.

“You have to treat your risotto like your wife”, said the cook, “never leaving its side as it cooks and giving it all your attention until it is done”, and true to his words, he never left that pot for a single moment. “The rice must be touched as little as possible”, he added, in a somewhat contrasting addition to the ‘wife’ analogy.

There are very few sights as satisfying as watching a knob of butter melt in a hot pan and that’s what we started with. Moving on, the rice was toasted until the pot exuded the telltale aroma of roasting grain, at which point a few generous glugs of white wine were added. Some moments after, the cook shifted his attention to the bubbling stock pot. “The rice and the stock must be at the same temperature”, he murmured, as he ladled stock onto the rice, gently stirring around the edges until the stock was gone, leaving in its place a gentle creaminess that would be the high point of the dish later.

“I don’t like using too much butter in the house”, said the cook as he continued feeding ladle after ladle of stock to the rice, “but with risotto, there is no choice”. Simple words that highlight the importance of food, culture and tradition all at once. “Get yourself a spoon from that drawer there”, he instructed, “and taste some of this”, which I did. The rice wasn’t done yet, still bearing a bit of crunch, though it was getting creamier and I could taste the mild flavours of mushrooms, toasted grain and butter. I was looking forward to his definition of ‘al dente’. About 25 minutes after starting, the rice was pronounced done, saffron and mushrooms having been mixed in and word was sent from the kitchen to the guests, asking them to please be seated.

Then came the final and perhaps the most important step – the addition of large amounts of grated parmesan cheese and butter, the whole lot coming together to create a pot full of creamy, flavourful risotto. Turning his attention to the stack of plates, Alessandro ladled a portion of rice into each, smartly slapping the bottom until the rice spread out flat over the plate and passed it to Gloria, their cook, who garnished each platter with slices of porcini mushrooms and a few strands of saffron before sending it out to the dining room. A few minutes later, back in a jacket, the cook returned to being a host and we seated ourselves at the dining table.

The ideal risotto will be subtly flavoured, with different elements (such as cheese and butter) in harmony, a bit of bite in every grain and the whole bound with creamy notes.

So, there I was, eating fork fulls of that delicious, steaming risotto – creamy and buttery and cheesy and mushroomy, sipping a perfectly paired wine and quite content to sit back and listen to the conversation at the table.

Conversation is an underrated part of our meals, and judging by most couples I see dining out, a dying art too. Seated at our table were a historian, a hotelier, a bureaucrat and a food writer, mingled with a legation of diplomats, with perhaps three generations between the lot of us. The resultant waves of conversation were nuggets of experience, perception and opinion that one would be otherwise hardpressed to find – thoughts that were expressed with all the eloquence one gathers over a lifetime of living; every one at the table clearly had.

These slices of roast tenderloin were medium-well done, flavoured with pan gravy and accompanied by buttery mashed potatoes.

Our meal continued with slices of roast tenderloin, dollops of mashed potatoes, flavourful gravy, more wines and finished with a pie stuffed with delicately flavoured ricotta cheese and an assortment of chocolate truffles and bon bons.

This lattice-top pie was stuffed with creamy ricotta cheese, delicately flavoured with orange essential oils, and accompanied by Marsala, a Sicilian wine.

I have no doubt there is finer food in my future, nor am I likely to find myself bereft of interesting company. Superlative versions of both however, at the right time, in the right place are unlikely to be found quite so quickly, making this an evening to remember.


Best out of Waste Contest by Skindulgence

All of us try not to waste food by reusing leftovers, though some of us are really good at it. Show off your talent by sharing your creations in this contest by Skindulgence Body Care.

The Contest

Food waste is food that is discarded or lost uneaten.

Over 1/3rd of all food produced globally is wasted. As area larger than China is used to grow food that is never eaten. In most developed countries over half of all food waste takes place in the home. ( However this is a modern phenomena. Our ancestors knew more about the sustainable use of resources than we do.

We can bring about a big change by making small changes in our kitchens. I remember my grandmother would make delicious curries out of vegetable peels. She would teach me how to peel the matar ke chilke to make a dish.
We can use vegetable scraps to make vegetable stock. Citrus peels can be dried, powdered and used in cakes. Leftover bread can be made into croutons. Stale bread can be used to thicken soups.

So show us your creativity by using any food waste or leftover to make delicious food.

The Rules

  • Recipe sharing is compulsory and must accompany every entry.
  • Each participant can share more than one entry by hash tagging each entry number. Your first entry’s hashtag will be ‘#Entry1’, the second entry, ‘#Entry2’ and the third,  ‘#Entry3’. Each recipe should be posted in a separate post.
  • A maximum of 3 entries per person is allowed.
  • Participants must share pictures of the final product and the leftover/waste item it was made of. Please post a maximum of 3 pictures per entry.
  • All posts must include the hashtags, #calcontest and #skindulgencecontest in addition to the entry number hashtags as mentioned earlier in the case of multiple entries.
  • Please like and share the Skindulgence Facebook page.
  • Absolutely no plagiarism please. If you’re inspired by someone else giving credit is a must by mentioning the person’s / organisation’s name and if possible a link to the recipe you were inspired by.
  • All entries must be of a dish prepared by the participant.
  • Participants not following any of the above rules will be disqualified.
  • The decision of the judges will be final. The judges are Mukulika Sengupta, Rhea Mitra-Dalal and Dr. Binti Jhuraney.
  • Winners will be judged based on their innovation, quality of the recipe and looks of the final product. The number of likes has no significance.

Contest Dates

Starts 23 October 2018 at 12:00 am and ends 29 October 2018 at 11:59 pm.

Result Declaration

The results will be announced on 5th November 2018.


  • 1st Prize: A hamper of 12 premium, handmade soaps (worth ~ INR 2,400)
  • 2nd Prize: A hamper of 10 premium, handmade soaps (worth ~ INR 2,000)
  • 3rd Prize: A hamper of 8 premium, handmade soaps (worth ~ INR 1,600)

Participants can be based anywhere, but have to provide an address for delivery of prizes within India. The prizes can be claimed within 3 months of declaration of results. Please write to with your full address and telephone number as soon as you can after declaration of the winner.


Desi Firangi Contest

Here’s an opportunity for you to show off your skills in the kitchen. Nasima Singh’s Desi Firangi brings to you a contest where you can go wild experimenting with new flavours for your desserts.

The Contest

Make any dessert that is a fusion of desi and firangi flavours, much like Desi Firangi’s signature Rasmalai Cake. That’s it.

The Rules

  • Recipe sharing is compulsory
  • Recipes must be accompanied by photos
  • Each participant can share more than one entry by hash tagging entry number. Your first entry’s hashtag will be ‘#Entry1’, the second entry, ‘#Entry2’ and the third,  ‘#Entry3’. Each recipe should be posted in a separate post.
  • A maximum of 3 entries per person is allowed.
  • Participants must share pictures of the final product only. Please post a maximum of 3 pictures per entry.
  • All posts must include the hashtags, #calcontest and #desifirangicontest in addition to the entry number hashtags as mentioned earlier in the case of multiple entries.
  • Please like and share the Desi Firangi Facebook page.
  • Absolutely no plagiarism please. If you’re inspired by someone else giving credit is a must by mentioning the person’s / organisation’s name and if possible a link to the recipe you were inspired by.
  • All entries must be of a dessert prepared by the participant.
  • Participants not following any of the above rules will be disqualified.
  • The decision of the judges will be final. The judges are Nasima Singh, Rhea Mitra-Dalal and Dr. Binti Jhuraney.
  • Winners will be judged based on their innovation, quality of the recipe, looks of the final product and the number of likes, with the number of likes having the smallest weightage.

Contest Dates

Starts 22 September 2018 at 12:00 am and ends 28 September 2018 at 11:59 pm.

Result Declaration

The results will be announced on 3rd October 2018.


  • 1st Prize: One seat in Desi Firangi’s most sought after One-day, 100% hands-on workshop for Basic Egg-less Whipped Cream Cakes. (worth INR 5500) (pictures below are representative of what you’ll learn how to make)
  • 2nd Prize: Baker’s Starter Tool Kit. (worth INR 3500)
  • 3rd Prize: Desi Firangi’s signature flavour 1 kg Rasmalai cake (worth INR 2100)

Participants can be based anywhere, but have to provide an address for delivery of prizes within Mumbai city limits. The 1st Prize can be claimed within 3 months of declaration of results (discussed and scheduled as per mutual convenience of the winner and DesiFirangi). The 2nd and 3rd prizes will be dispatched within 10 days from the date of declaration of results. Please write to with your full address and telephone number as soon as you can after declaration of the winner.

Featured People

Smitha Pinto – Culinary Artist

Smitha is a food lover who enjoys creating new recipes and cooking them, then styling and photographing the food she prepared. At the same time Smitha is also an International Board-Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) and Breastfeeding Specialist. while also being a Registered Nurse (RN) and Midwife (RM). Currently, she is the Chief Lactation Consultant at MilkyWays.

Smitha’s Instagram feed is an enviable collection of the most beautifully styled and clicked pictures of food that you’re sure to love! Click here to check out her Facebook page. In case you’re interested in checking out Smitha’s professional credentials, here’s the Facebook page.