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A Michelin-star chef’s gift to future ones

- Beginners’ guide: collection of recipes, tips and techniques by Vikas Khanna

Is MasterChef your favourite show on TV? Does it leave you wondering how to fry pancakes golden and yet keep them soft or how to get the frosting right on cupcakes? Did watching Ratatouille leave you sighing for your very own Remy? Well, your prayers have been answered, by none other than Michelin-star chef Vikas Khanna.

Young Chefs [published by Dorling Kindersley Publishing Limited, a Penguin Random House Company, Rs 499] is a collection of recipes for “dearest little chef” to make scrumptious breakfasts, lip-smacking lunches and delicious dinners.

And what’s more? There’s none of the exotic stuff available only in gourmet stores. Khanna, who grew up learning to cook as his grandmom’s kitchen helper, uses everyday ingredients like bread, eggs, flour, milk and veggies to whip up one delicacy after another. He also takes care to acquaint readers with the rituals of a kitchen and the weapons of a chef.

“When you travel to France or the US, you will be surprised that how much kids are interested in cooking. But, today in India, the revolution is happening at a much faster pace,” Khanna told Metro. “I feel empowered by the imagination of the kids and, of course, their capacity to learn and grow.”

The first six pages of the book, which was released on Children’s Day, are devoted to introducing beginners to various cooking tools, techniques. So, get ready to know the difference between a baking parchment, a cling film and a foil, a grill and a griddle, mashing and blending and an ordinary dough and a pizza dough.

The cookbook explores a wide range of recipes — with the right mix of desi and global — be it Eggy Bread or Chilla for breakfast; Crispy Aloo Tikkis to Pitta Pockets for tiffin; from a healthy Tuna and Bean Salad to kebabs for main course and from Blueberry Cheesecake to Shahi Tukda for delectable dessert. Psst! You even get to learn to bake your own gingerbread man. Each of the recipes is accompanied by step-by-step pictures, none of them more than six steps.

Six-year-old Siddhant Agarwal from La Martiniere for Boys loves to cook and is thrilled by the very idea of a cookbook from a masterchef. “I would love to have Khanna’s cookbook as a guide. I’m sure to learn a lot.”

Chandrima Bose, Class XI, Carmel High School, hopes the book will help her bake a perfect cake. “I love Vikas Khanna as he’s a great chef and is wonderful with kids. I am a digger for desserts. That I can have his cookbook and make them myself is tempting and encouraging. I can’t wait to buy the book and start baking. My mouth is already watering!”

Khanna’s advice: “You can begin anytime, it’s never late. The world is yours if you follow your passion.”