‘All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to you my angel mother in Heaven.’
I dedicate this blog to my Angel Mother in Heaven.
She was a fantastic cook , she prepared the divine food for the entire family with the secret ingredient called “Love”.
She is my Inspiration and life.
My Blog is my Soul :
I strongly believe that as a Chef and Food Blogger it is my utmost responsibility that the recipes and knowledge that I share with my readers, followers and all are authentic as well as my own tadka that is innovative.
I love to prepare both types of recipes which are out of the box as well as traditional authentic recipes.
My blog gives my readers a variety, an idea how various flavors and ingredients can be blended.
You will find my recipes with cooking tips that would help you to prepare the dishes with ease.
Right from the Mise En Place ,Actual Cooking, Food Styling and LIGHTS CAMERA ACTION…. Food Photography I do it all. This means that I put my SOUL into my BLOG…..
I intricately prepare cuisine designed to capture a delicious and exciting range of flavors, textures and aromas.
I believe that we eat with our eyes first…….
I believe that the food that I cook / prepare should not only touch the hearts but also the souls of the people relishing it. I follow the path shown by my Mother , that is bring smiles and spreading Happiness through the food I cook.
I strongly believe in “Real Chefs Share and Teach.”
“Secrets, especially with cooking, are best shared so that the cuisine lives on.” – Bo Songvisava
Food is my Religion.
My Culinary Journey so far….Risen like a Phoenix….
As a Kid I have grown up seeing my mother cook the most delectable cuisines for the entire family. That gave the first kick in my mind that, Yes food is such an interesting and enormous art. I guess that I have got it through my genes.
I remember when almost all my relatives were strictly against my joining Hotel Management. The persons who stood like pillars were and still are my parents. The myth those days was that this profession is just not apt for girls. I owe all my success to my God Almighty, my Angel mother Mrs. Manjit M.S. Arora and my father , Mr. M.S.Arora, who supported me right from day one. I made sure to make them proud by receiving the Certificate of Merit. Thus kick-starting my journey into the world of foods.” I am also blessed to have such a supportive and motivating husband, my soulmate Uday B. Kugaji who supports, encourages and motivates me in my growth and success.
I am presently working as a Grub Panelist with Senhora Magazine,
Chef, Culinary Expert , Food Blogger, Mentor, Hospitality and Food Consultant at http://womenpla.net/
http://womenpla.net/author/reetu-uday-kugaji/ , Food Author with www.tanyamunshi.com,
Food Author & Food expert at http://www.mangobunch.com/
My Blog: https://chefreetuudaykugaji.com/blog/
I run a Facebook page “Food For Thought by Chef Mrs Reetu UdayKugaji” https://www.facebook.com/chefreetuudaykugaji/
I also have a Facebook group “Knowledge is Wisdom” https://www.facebook.com/groups/471652423010057/
wherein my students and I share a lot of Current / Latest trends in Hospitality, Food, Food Styling, Food Plating and Food Photography.
Member of Western India Culinary Association (WICA)
Member of Indian Women in Hospitality (IWH)
I have worked as a Chef Consultant and Culinary Expert at “FITMAG” http://www.fitmag.in/ ,Speciality Chef with www.Percept Knorigin.com , www.cinecurry.com , Oxygen Infotainment and www.chefsutra.com and as a Food Author withwww.pioneerchef.com , theurbanspice.com and www.pinksworth.com
I have also worked as a as a Hospitality and Food Consultant, Speciality Chef and Food Author at www.plattershare.com from 24th December 2015 to 3rd October 2018.
Also, I am into writing recipes to suit both Desi and Videshi people and articles for various online and offline publications.
In the past, I have worked as a Program Head of Culinary Arts, Queen Margaret University, Edinburgh at the ITM Institute of Hotel Management at Navi Mumbai.
Also ,I have worked as an Associate Professor at D.Y. Patil University, School of Hospitality and Tourism Studies, Navi Mumbai. At the D.Y. Patil University and Stadium, I was menu planning and preparing the most delectable and exotic cuisines for the Former Hon. President Of India Her Excellency Smt. Pratibha Tai Patil, “The God of Cricket” Mr. Sachin Ramesh Tendulkar, “The Great Wall of Indian Cricket” Mr. Rahul Dravid and various other dignitaries and eminent personalities.
I intricately prepared cuisine designed to capture a delicious and exciting range of flavours, textures and aromas. I also handled special food preparations for IPL matches, T 20-20, International Cricket Matches at the D.Y. Patil Stadium, Navi Mumbai. I have cooked the most delectable cuisines for small to very large numbers.
With 20+ years of experience in the world of culinary, I believe that food is like oxygen to me. Food for me is God. As my profession demands cooking and tasting Non-Vegetarian foods & in spite of being a pure vegetarian, I perform my duties religiously as I understand the cause behind it is holy and noble. I profoundly believe that food whether vegetarian or non-vegetarian, if cooked with utmost love and positivity touches the heart of a person relishing it. I am privileged to be a Chef and a Mentor. If I have to say what my biggest achievements are, they would be shaping the careers and motivating thousands of students. I am indeed blessed to see my students excel in their careers and holding immense respect, gratitude and love for me. I believe that the food that I cook / prepare should not only touch the hearts but also the souls of the people relishing it.
I am a complete foodie; love to experiment with foods, innovations and fusions in foods and beverages; passionate about exploring new places and tasting and knowing about different types of cuisines. I totally adore food styling and food photography. I have an insatiable curiosity for new foods and love pairing flavours, foods and ideas from different parts of the world. It feels great to share my knowledge and skills with everyone.
“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.” -Mahatma Gandhi
Learning is an everlasting process, I learn from every one even from my students, from every person I know or I don’t even know. Pick up the Positives and DROP THE NEGATIVES.
Upgrading oneself must be constant, may it be skills, training, technology or recent trends in Culinary and Hospitality.
I am currently working on: Bringing Back The Lost Recipes of India.
As chefs ,bloggers and mentors we owe to the generations coming to bring back the lost recipes of India. I believe that Indian cuisine has gone a long way, may it be creativity, food plating and food presentation.
In the Past , as a Program Head-Culinary Arts, I have tried my bit of introducing The Lost Recipes of India in our Queen Margaret University , Edinburgh module known as Culinary Concept Development and Production where I had encouraged students to bring back the lost recipes of India.
This not only creates awareness among the budding chefs but when they go ahead with their extensive research, they are facing mind-boggling facts like what a vast and rich treasure we have in Indian Cuisine.
Positively the coming generations will bring back the lost recipes of India , the authentic flavor’s and fragrance as India’s colonial legacy is food.
I have had an enriching experience as a Program Head-Culinary Arts at:
I have a vast and enriching experience as an Associate Professor (Food Production) at :
Trained and have upgraded my Knowledge at:
Western India Culinary Association (WICA)
Indian Women in Hospitality (IWH)
Media Coverage/ Interviews /Articles / Recipes featured / Published in Magazines / Digital Magazines, Newspapers and Websites and Projects :
BSH India- Gaggenau…where tradition meets innovation.
My Recipes on YouTube: Eat Drink and More
Kadha Prasad- https://youtu.be/JZVDtKiBJhQ
Paan Shots- https://youtu.be/n9JwDgkmLt4
Anar Raita- https://youtu.be/AnWK8VK3PB0
Murgh Methi Malai Kabab- https://youtu.be/YOda6l2Tkw0
Khubani Ka Meetha- https://youtu.be/GLFBNmVfpjg
Chicken Spinach Salad- https://youtu.be/YIzHHJMIVDU
Beer Battered Fried Fish- https://youtu.be/lHHHQByKRcA
How to make sour curd sweet? https://youtu.be/pvYRoYuDDB4
How to keep the salad fresh? https://youtu.be/HhX5okRmHsk
How to keep Spinach Fresh? https://youtu.be/e_9gYb77g_Q
How to peel Almonds? https://youtu.be/xyQqP58PR
Achievements and Awards:
- AspiringShe Power Awardee 2020…Women Achievers Forum Designed to Inspire… 4th Edition 2020…. for the “ Most Innovative Chef Of The Year”, received award on 7th March 2020 at Audi Mumbai, West.
- Received the Kalki Gaurav Award for my tireless effort and valuable role in building up the Nation on the 7th Feb 2020 by the Kalki News and Kalki Foundation Trust.
- Received Award… ” Exceptional Women of Excellence” conferred by Women Economic Forum (WEF) on the 16th April 2019 at Vivanta By Taj, Dwarka, New Delhi.
- Received Award of Excellence 2018 for Women Achiever and Best Chef Indian Cuisine, organized by G-Town Society Magazine, Delhi
- Achiever / Winner of Planet’s Pride Awards 2018 ….It was announced on Social Media on the 19th October 2018 , received award at the Laxmi Vilas Palace, Vadodara on 27th Oct 2018 organized by Women Planet.
- Winner as a Social Media “Superwomen2018” Bloggers/ Creators on 8th March 2018- International Women’s Day at Social Samosa.
- Winner in the Top 50 WeAreTheCity India’s Rising Stars 2017
http://wearethecity.in/rising-stars-2017/rising-stars-2017-winners/ award received on the 14th November 2017 at the J W Marriots, Juhu Mumbai.
- Among the Top 5-Best Original Recipe Blogger at Better Homes and Gardens Awards in collaboration with Social Samosa ( BHG Awards 2017)
- Winner in the Campaign WOMAN AT WORK, published in the VOL 2/ ISSUE 5 /May 2016 Edition of the Magazine. Page 14 AND 15
- Nominated / Shortlisted for Awards:
- Nominated & Shortlisted for Social Media “Superwomen2020” Bloggers/ Creators on 8thMarch 2020- International Women’s Day at Social Samosa.
- Nominated as the “Best Chef” “Perfect Chefs of the year 2020” 5th Perfect Achievers Award 2020 by Perfect Woman Pvt. Ltd . Award to be announced on 21st March 2020 at Country Club Hospitality, Andheri (W).
- Finalists in 2 Categories for The Orange Flower Awards 2020 by Women’s Web
- Nominated in IWGA 2020 (Indian Women Global Awards-2020) . Results yet to be announced.
- Nominated & Shortlisted for Social Media “Superwomen2019” Bloggers/ Creators on 8th March 2019- International Women’s Day at Social Samosa.
- Nominated for the iwomanglobalawards 2019
- Shortlisted for The Orange Flower Awards 2018 organized by Women’s Web for Food Writing and Travel Writing.
- Featured on the Cover Page of:
- Featured / Published on the Cover Page, Interview and Recipe
- published in March 2019- Chef’s Platter Magazine.
- Featured / Published on the Cover Page of Hospitality Lexis” Magazine in February 2019.
- Featured / Published on the Cover Page, Interview and Recipe published in March 2018- Chef’s Platter Magazine.
- Featured on the Cover Page of Food Service Magazine India – September October 2017. My Interview has also been published in the magazine.
- Conducted a Live Demonstration and An Interactive Session of Desserts and More on the 9th November 2019 (Saturday) from 9.00 a.m. to 6.00 p.m. for the German Luxury Brand for high-quality built-in appliances …Kitchen Appliances… BSH India- Gaggenau at the AceTech Exhibition Mumbai.
- Media Coverage and other Achievements
- My Thoughts and Quote on Food during Covid19 Crisis was featured at the YourChefStory on 1st April 2020.
- My work was appreciated by Collar Camp of Developing Recipes of zero food waste , Resourceful use of Leftover food and quick and easy recipes during the 21 day Lockdown during Covid19 Crisis… Featured on 1st April 2020.
- My recipe of Egg Biryani…Dreaming of the Perfect ‘Dum’ is featured in the Mid-Day.. The Guide .. Page 17 on the 24th March 2020.
- My interview on “Chef Ree-tuning the Gender Biasness” is featured in Hospitality Lexis Magazine… March 2020.
- My review on Nut-Lite Butters is featured in Hospitality Lexis Magazine… March 2020.
- My recipe of Paan and Thandai Kulfi and my inputs on Thandai are featured ….This Holi , redefine thandai your way…The Times Of India Ahmedabad Times on 9th March 2020.
- My recipe of Fruit Paan is featured…. Paan-Dering To Tastes
From lip smacking mocktails to popsicles, here are few paan recipes that one can try making at their home, this holi…. in Hindustan Times… HT Live .. Delhi on the 8th March 2020.
- My recipes ….No Onion and No Garlic…Kurkuri Bhindi ,Hara Bhara Kebab, Kaddu ki Khatti Meethi Sabzi ,Achari Paneer ,Jaiselmeri Kala Chana, Kashmir Dum Aloo ,Kathal Ki Sabzi, Mango Kadhi, Bhutte Ka Kees & Rajasthani Pitod Ki Sabzi. ….were featured in March 2020 Grehlakshmi Hindi Magazine.
- My inputs on No Kid on the block …Poor air quality, frequent flooding, droughts and scarcity of clean water has led young couples to choose not to have kids, because they don’t see a future for them, were featured in the Sunday Mid-day 1st March 2020… Page 22 &23.
- My inputs have been featured in the Outlook Magazine on Fermentation of Foods and Beverages…. How About A Crisp Dosa With Fermented Soy Beans And Fish Mash?… Bacteria aren’t that bad and nature shows us how to put them to good use through fermented foods….24th Feb 2020.
- My recipes of Rose and Quinoa Pudding & Aloo Aur Gulab Ka Halwa … “Cooking with Roses..Whip out an aromatic Meal with the flower today”. is featured in Bombay Times, The Times of India on 14th Feb 2020.
- My review and inputs on Holige House are featured in the Mid-Day….. “ A Roly-Poli Affair …Page 25 Newspaper on 8th Feb 2020
- My recipes…Kesar Pista Phirni and Moong Dal Halwa…Delights to Usher in Spring. This Basant Panchami treat yourself to some creativity conceived dishes which compliment the festive hues of YeLLow….. have been featured in Hindustan Times LIFESTYLE htlive on 27th Jan 2020 Page 05.
- My recipes … Gosht Ka Halwa, Khubani Ka Meetha,
Benami Kheer And Shufta have been featured in the Mumbai Mirror…Sugar, but no rush….
Take a trip down memory lane with these slow-cooked traditional Indian desserts…. on 19th Jan 2020 Page 23 and 24.
- My 06 Food Photographs have been featured in the Photography Magazine “chiiz” January 2020 Volume 34.
- My culinary inputs on Edible flowers “The Lotus Eaters” have been featured in the Economic Times on 11th January 2020.
- How to Jazz up your Soup, my culinary tips have been featured on the bigbasket Lifestyle website on 7th January 2020.
- My article on “ Foods to fight Pollution” is featured in the Magazine…eShe –the female glaze- in January 2020.
- My articles are featured in the UKScollege … Melhor 2019
….Edible flowers Aesthetics or Health and Nutrition.
….Emerging Food Ingredients this year.
- My Husband Uday Kugaji and I were featured in livemint MintLOUNGE Mumbai , Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi, Hyderabad and Kolkata on 21st December 2019 “ All I want for Christmas is You”.
- My article on Food Allergies and Restaurants…
Why we need to be more aware ? is featured in the magazine Senhora November 2019.
- My recipe of Beetroot Halwa … “Beetroot, no longer just a Salad fave” was featured in Bombay Times, The Times of India on 9th November 2019.
- Featured on CNBCTV18 on 18th Oct 2019 … International Chefs Day
- “Food & Memory: These Chefs Are Putting the Spotlight on Their Culinary Heritage: https://www.cnbctv18.com/buzz/food–memory-these-chefs-are-putting-the-spotlight-on-their-culinary-heritage-4553711.htm?fbclid=IwAR1Q1bf5gKvhmm8FsIVo2MnKhbojZBnHtb92K1aVYk2w7i-t6lGyWSz7B9c
- My article on The Work Behind the Glamour.. The Chef Life is featured in the magazine Senhora October 2019.
- I was featured in the magazine Hospitality Lexis October 2019 IFCA Special in Chefs Decoded, What your Bio says? , along with my recipe of Paan and Quinoa Pudding.
- My Food Photography with 11 HD Food Photographs are featured in the Smart Photography Magazine October 2019… Showcase-A photographic profile of the person behind the lens…“Savoury Visuals” .
- My culinary journey and work on getting back the lost recipes “ Chefs Table- Five Outstanding Chefs Share their Journey” is featured in the eShe –the female glaze magazine October -2019.
- My views on Thou shall not MEAT
Are non-Vegetarians under pressure to make the big switch? Are featured in The Free Press Journal , Mumbai …on the 29th September 2019.
- My recipes .. Dates, Figs and Oats Ladoo and Ragi Ladoo .. Scrumptious and Wholesome Recipes are featured in the BPOSITIVE magazine…..September 2019.
- My recipes Orange and Oats Ladoo, Peach Melba Crumbles with Vanilla Ice Cream and Kesari Shrikhand are featured on Ganesh Chaturthi … HAVE A ‘SWEET’ GANESH CHATURTHI.. at my coup.in on 29th August 2019.http://mycoup.in/have-a-sweet-ganesh-chaturthi
- My inputs on “Tips to make your traditional sweets and desserts healthier” is featured on 28th August 2019 on bigbasket Lifestyle Portalhttps://blog.bigbasket.com/2019/08/28/tips-to-make-your-traditional-sweets-and-desserts-healthier/
- My recipe of Grilled Corn On The Cob with Kolhapuri Spice Mix Rub … “Bite into some Corn” was featured in The Bombay Times , Times of India on 23rd August 2019.
- My recipe of Kesari Shrikhand is featured on Janmashtami “4 Delicious Dishes You Can Whip Up For Friends And Family This Janmashtami” on 22nd Aug 2019 on Zee Telugu Portal / Website.https://zeetelugu.zee5.com/4-delicious-dishes-you-can-whip-up-for-friends-and-family-this-janmashtami/
- My recipes of Crackwiches, Dark Chocolate Berries Pudding (No Bake and Eggless) is featured on Raksha Bandhan… “Let’s serve some sibling love” 8th August 2019 at mycoup.in
- My recipes .. Beetroot Raita, Roasted Beetroot Hummus, Beetroot Pachadi, Gingery Beetroot and Coconut Soup, Spiced Beetroot soup and Badami Halu (Almond Milk) are featured in the BPOSITIVE magazine…..August 2019.
- My article on Adventures of a Chef.. is featured in the magazine.. “Mind Magazine India”. .. August 2019.
- My article on Salads of India.. is featured in the magazine.. “Spunky Indian”. .. August 2019
- My 8 recipes “Non-Spicy / Less Spicy Vegetarian Preparations”…. are featured in the Grehlakshmi Magazine- Hindi… August 2019.
- My recipes of Vegan Rajma Burger and Vegan Chocolate Mousse is featured in the BPOSITIVE magazine…..July 2019
- My recipe of Spiced Beetroot Soup is featured in THE DENTCARE MAGAZINE…. July 2019
- My recipe Marigold and Mixed Sprouts Salad is featured in the magazine …Spunky Indian July 2019.
- My 15 Monsoon recipes have been featured in the “Meri Saheli” Hindi Magazine July 2019.
- My recipe Shahi Gulkand Gulab Jamun is featured in the magazine …Spunky Indian June 2019.
- My recipes Coconut Ice cream and Betel Leaf – Coconut Yogurt have been featured in the Times of India… Bombay Times…This Summer Go Nuts Over Coconut…. on the 25th May 2019
- My inputs on Coorgi Cuisine are featured in The Economic Times…Indica Gastronomica Page 8…The Land of Coffee, Wild Boar and Kachampuli by Mr. Anirban Bora… New Delhi, Gurgaon ,Kolkata and Bangalore on 18th May 2019.
- My inputs on Ice Apple (Tadgola) and HD photograph of Ice Apple and Thandai Kheer ( Tadgola aur Thandai Ki Kheer) is featured in the Newspaper “Mid-day” on 9th May 2019.
- My recipe Ice Apple and Thandai Kheer ( Tadgola aur Thandai Ki Kheer) is featured in the magazine “ Spunky Indian” May 2019.
- My recipe Dhungari Hui Chaach (Smoked Buttermilk) has been featured in the SUBURB Life – Gurgaon’s Very Own Lifestyle & Infotainment Magazine…. Volume 14 Issue 04…April 2019
- My recipes Aamras and Fajeto (Mango Kadhi) have been featured in the Times of India… Bombay Times…Have a Mangolicious Summer! on the 3th April 2019
- My recipe… Khubani Ka Meetha was featured in Fitmag Magazine- March 2019.
- My recipe of Sabudana and Carrot Kheer has been featured in The Free Press Journal,,, Gudi Goodies ….. For Gudi Padwa… on 31st March 2019.
- My recipe… Khubani Ka Meetha was featured in Fitmag Magazine- March 2019.
- My recipes Apple and Thandai Kheer & Beetroot Halwa are published / featured in the “Diabetic Living India” Magazine, March-April 2019.