She was one of the four finalists in the MasterChef India 2019 season 6, a cooking reality show that was held on December 7. With heart-full of dreams and eyes seeing to transform these into reality in life, the 26-year-old Smrutisree Singh of Angul district of Odisha is determined to make India and Odisha proud by casting her magical spell on others through the mouth-watering Odia cuisines.

During a conversation, Smrutisree, the first Odia girl contestant of MasterChef India 6, shares her dream, aspirations and more.

Excerpts:

  1. First of all congratulations for being a part of MasterChef India 6 and being one of the finalists of the cooking show. But tell us, what drove you to participate in the show and your idea of becoming a chef?

SS: Actually, it was my father’s dream that I become a good chef, and my mother inspired me to participate in the show. I consider my mother and grandmother as my inspirations for cooking.  Their art of cooking introduced me to the world of flavours and made me fall in love for food.

  1. Did you earlier participate in any cooking show and how you developed your cooking skill?

SS: Yes, I tried earlier for the MasterChef 2. I developed my cooking skills by cooking along with my father since childhood. It is actually my family who made me polish my skills of cooking and feeding others. Also, I love spending my leisure time in watching cooking shows, which helped me a lot.

  1. Generally, people praise male chefs more than women; what is your view?

SS: Cooking is an art. It never matters whether it is a men or women practicing it. But men learn the art and women bear the skill of cooking and taking care of others since birth. It is just that we need to learn how to perform it perfectly and grow with time.

  1. You are crazy about doing tattoos and have a tattooed signature of Chef Vikas Khanna?

SS: Yes, I am a great fan of Chef Vikas Khanna and it was just a very different feeling when I had first seen him. Since my childhood, I have been following his art of cooking and this has kept me motivated to achieve my dream.

  1. Why you selected Kakara and old style jack-fruit curry as your grand dish in place of global dish?

SS: Certainly, Odisha is inside the globe. Then, I thought why flavours of its dish will not be acclaimed globally. This thought made me cook our Odia cuisine that we usually eat everyday and drove me to make the judges say wow to our lovely delicious food.

  1. Which food is your favorite?

The homemade mutton curry in Odia style, specifically cooked by my mother, and the yummy muffins made by my father are my favorites. I also love street food.

  1. How did you feel being a finalist?

Actually, the moment made me crying with happiness. It is because of facing all the challenges and overcoming them I was finally at the place which was giving me an identity among other chefs of our country.

  1. Any suggestions for cooking aspirants?

Just love your art and polish your skills for achieving your dreams always, keep learning and never leave the habit of experimenting with flavours. Keep on feeding people with your dishes by collecting feedback from them as they are your true guide.