Chef Gary Mehigan of Masterchef Australia fame visited the capital recently, and we caught him at Hyatt Regency Delhi just before he disappeared into the kitchen to start preparing a seven-course meal based on the seven wonders of the world.

Amidst chatter of Indian Accent, Chandni Chowk and Elena Duggan’s victory in season eight, the seasoned chef revealed some interesting tit bits about himself.

Bread Start

Photo source: 3268zauber via Wikimedia Commons [CC BY-SA 3.0][Generic]

Photo source: Zauber via Wikimedia Commons [CC BY-SA 3.0][Generic]

The first thing he ever tried his hand {and succeeded} at in the kitchen was bread. Mehigan’s grandfather was a chef and it was he who introduced Gary to the art of baking. And he’s been dough-ing it right ever since.

His first self-cooked meal was a simple Chicken with Tarragon.

Condiment Hoarding

Gary candidly told us that the top shelf of his fridge at home is filled to the brim with condiments of all kinds, especially the spicy ones. You’ll find everything from sambal sauce to salsas to chilli sauces and preserves, to even a jar of mango pickle.

And you thought he couldn’t handle spice just because he comes from down under? He also told us that George from the show enjoys spices immensely even though he breaks out in a sweat.

He has a special place in his heart {and tummy?} for the Indian green curry leaf.

Eating The Streets

Photo source: Yusuke Kawasaki via Wikimedia Commons [CC BY 2.0][Generic]

Photo source:Yusuke Kawasaki via Wikimedia Commons [CC BY 2.0][Generic]

Whereas he {unsurprisingly} declared that Indian Accent was his go-to place in Delhi {and chef Gaggan Anand and Manish Mehrotra his favourite Indian chefs}, we were surprised to learn he’s gone eating through the dusty by lanes of Chandni Chowk.

Some of his favourite eats include the sugary jalebi, the spicy golgappa and the Indian favourite, gulab jamun.

He also has a strong liking for south Indian rice dishes like idlis and dosas. And Goan sausages. Mmmm.

Taste, Creativity, Technique

In that order. These are the parameters on which he judges all those #foodgasm dishes on Masterchef. You may use all the tools, all the nitrogen and all the burners in the world and make your dish look like an Instagram addict’s dream, but it all boils down to taste. The way to a man’s heart etc.

When asked about healthy eating, chef Gary explained the limitations when you’re running a restaurant, but also half-jokingly told us “it’s a good idea; you won’t be around for very long otherwise.” The key? “Moderation.”

But you knew that, didn’t you?

Featured photo source: Gary Mehigan