If you want to savour a sit-down dinner curated by some of the finest female chefs from around the world and celebrate Indian heritage at its best, then the upcoming Shefs at The Leela culinary event is for you! By Rooplekha Das
Acclaimed as the world’s best hotel brand for two years in a row at the World’s Best Awards by Travel+Leisure USA, The Leela Palace, along with Dean with us (comprising of duo Rupali Dean, a journalist; and food and travel writer Akanksha Dean), has come up with Shefs at The Leela, a culinary event celebrating Indian heritage and produce. The first leg of the event will kickstart with a Brand Masterclass by acclaimed Chef Zafar Ali at The Leela Palace Bengaluru on October 7, followed by a sit-down dinner the next day.
The nation-wide event aims to embrace women and Indian cuisine with four very incredibly talented female chefs from across the world. These ladies vary from daring pioneers to those reshaping their cultures throughout the world. Their unique take on their individual desi backgrounds will be highlighted through the indigenous flavours in the cuisines they will be curating. Notably, Madhav Sehgal, the general manager of The Leela Palace Bengaluru has contributed to the initiation of Shefs at The Leela via his lens.
Meet The Shefs at The Leela
A New York-based chef who doesn’t shy away from modifying age-old recipes to suit audiences, Sampath values quality ingredients. With bold and intense flavours being her signature style, Sampath’s USP is her awareness and sensitivity towards foods. She is currently exploring how the Indian diaspora has impacted so many regions of the world, as well as how Indian cuisine is transforming.
A footballer-turned-culinary storyteller, Dosanj is the first British-Asian to play for England at any level. Beyond the field, though, she is well-known for her capacity to teach, connect, and convey tales via food. Known to work with organic farmers and producers, she brings delicious experiences to the table in unexpected places like the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia, Canada. Inspired by slow food ideals and social justice initiatives, the self-taught chef was named ‘one of Canada’s next star chefs’ by The Globe and Mail in 2020.
Cooking for celebrities is not an easy task, but chef Sherry Mehta does it seamlessly! She has been the preferred choice for catering at both, Bollywood parties and corporate executives. She even has a full-fledged catering setup in Mumbai that can serve up to 2,000 people at a time. Known as A Girl From The Hills, Mehta is also a food expert, northwest frontier and Himachali pop-up specialist, Miss Shimla 2005, and the director of host relations at Indian Food Trail (a culinary tour agency).
Known as the ambassador for Indian cuisine, Amninder Sandhu’s passion for cooking pervades all she does, earning her the Ministry of Tourism’s Best Lady Chef Award in 2016. The girl with gold in her fingers, as legendary chef Marco Pierre White nicknamed her, Sandhu’s passion for cooking has led to her success in a male-dominated industry. India’s culinary traditions serve as inspiration for her creations. She appreciates traditional Indian cooking methods, locally sourced ingredients, and long-forgotten traditions passed down from generation to generation.