Celebrity Chef and actor, Amrita Raichand who shot to fame with the food show Mummy Ka Magic, is from Bihar. She remembers that during her childhood, the delightful flavour and aroma of mustard oil was always wafting from the family kitchen. It was a familiar and homely experience that she grew up with, and later – as a chef – she found various ways to work the dominant taste of mustard oil into her recipes. Amrita believes that the characteristic flavour of this oil should not be seen as a drawback. Instead she uses it to transform the simplest of recipes into something interesting… something different.
Another celebrity from the international gourmet business, Chef Nishant Choubey, has a very experimental approach to using mustard oil. Recognizing the inherent versatility of mustard oil, he uses it to add a completely new dimension to Indonesian and other South East Asian cuisines. In particular, he appreciates the high smoking point (around 250oC) that mustard oil offers, which means it remains stable even at high temperatures and is ideally suited to recipes that involve extended cooking and repeated reheating across multiple stages. Like Amrita, he uses mustard oil to create dishes that leave your taste-buds tingling with a delightful, spicy sensation.
Yet another celebrity chef who is known to be passionate about using mustard oil is Chef Manjeet Gill. He was instrumental in developing the menu for ITC’s Royal Vega at the Grand Chola in Chennai. The Royal Vega is India’s first super-premium luxury vegetarian restaurant. The menu is based on the tenets of Vedic cooking and incorporates many of the principles found in ancient Ayurveda treatises. In accordance with Chef Gill’s instructions, all cooking in the kitchens of this restaurant are done using only mustard oil and ghee.
As you can see – the leading chefs all across India have a clear choice when it comes to cooking media: they choose mustard oil.