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November 2022, Issue"Word "Kitchen" Takes me to the Kitchen"

Chef Vaibhav BhargavaChef Consultant VIETNOM

February 2023, Issue"Flexibility & Adaptability are Equally Crucial to Become a Successful Leader"

Chef Sanjay KumarExecutive Chef Abela & Co. Dubai

Latest News

31 March 2024 Prayas Rasal Wins EverestBKCC Season 5 Grand Finale

In a thrilling conclusion to the Everest Better Kitchen Culinary Challenge (EverestBKCC) Season 5, Prayas P Rasal from Sheila Raheja IHM, Mumbai, emerged as the Grand Finale winner. Prayas not only secured the coveted trophy but also earned a prestigious scholarship worth USD 5750 under the USA J1 Chef Exchange Visitor Program for 12 months from Wisdom Career Education. The competition, which took place at IHM, Dadar, Mumbai, showcased exceptional culinary talents from across the country. Srishti Sen, a student of Symbiosis School of Culinary Arts, Pune, and Jatin Kumar Dhiman, a student of SRM University, Sonepat, secured the first and second runner-up positions, respectively.

The Everest Better Kitchen Culinary Challenge is India's largest culinary competition for hospitality students, held in 15 cities across India, with the grand finale in Mumbai. It not only provides a platform for budding chefs to showcase their talents but also aims to create awareness about regional cuisines, promote Indian food globally, and revive lost regional recipes.

The Grand Finale comprised five rounds, including a written Q&A, aptitude test, mystery basket challenge, replicating a chef's recipe using an LG Microwave, and creating a dessert. A couple of rounds were very well curated by Chef Sudhir Pai.

The distinguished jury panel included renowned chefs such as Sudhir Pai, Sidney Dcunha, Parimal Sawant, Altamsh Patel, Aungshuman Chakraborty, Abhijeet Bagwe, Rohit Gujral, Anees Khan, Vivek Kadam, Shantanu Gupte, and Bimba Nayak.

The event received support from various organizations, including Incredible India - Ministry of Tourism, National Council for Hotel Management and Catering Technology, Uttar Pradesh Tourism, Madhya Pradesh Tourism Hotels & Resorts, Indian Culinary Forum, Western India Chefs' Association (WICA), Chefs Association of Five Rivers, Varanasi Chef's Association, Telangana Chef's Association, Culinary Forum of Goa, Royal Rajasthan Chefs Society, and Hospitality Purchasing Managers' Forum (HPMF).

Ekkta Bhargeva, Publisher of Better Kitchen, emphasized that the event aims to prepare students for future challenges and promote Indian regional food using local ingredients globally.

Chef Harpal Singh Sokhi graced the event as the chief guest. He praised the participants for their passion and dedication to the culinary arts, inspiring a new generation of chefs.

In addition to the culinary challenge, the event also featured the Better Kitchen Bakery Champion (BKBC) competition, won by Deepanshu Sati from Kukreja IHM, Dehradun. Priya Pansuriya from Florence Academy, Ahmedabad, and Prerana E from PES University, Bengaluru, secured the first and second runner-up positions, respectively.

The event also honored outstanding educators in hospitality education with the Better Kitchen Awards for Excellence in Hospitality Education. Chef Ajay Sood received the Chef Soundrarajan Memorial Award, Chef Viswanatha K Iyer was recognized for Butchery Education, Chef Balaji Krishnamoorthy for South Indian Authentic Cuisines Education, Chef Sunit Sharma as a Culinary Mentor, Dr. Chef Amol Abhimanyu Rawool as a Promising Mentor, and Dr. Nisheeth Srivastava as Principal of the Year.

Everest Spices served as the Title Partner for the competition, with other sponsors including Wisdom Career Education (International Placement & Study Abroad Partner), MYMENU365 (Trophy Partner), Chefs Unlimited (Uniform Partner), Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (Energy Partner), LG (Cooking Partner), Coca Cola (Beverage Partner), Amul (Dairy Partner), Tabasco, Barilla, and Ovamaltine (Gift Hamper Partners), Tasty Kiwi by QualityNZ (Meat Partner), and Cornitos (Munching Partner).

18 February 2024 Amitabh Kant Foresees a Bright, Bold, and Broad Future for the Hospitality Sector at IHM Mumbai's Platinum Jubilee Celebration

The Institute of Hotel Management, Mumbai, popularly known as Dadar Catering College, celebrated its Platinum Jubilee, marking 70 years of excellence in hospitality education and hotel management. The grand event, held in Mumbai, was attended by alumni, students, staff, and industry stalwarts.

Established on June 27, 1954, IHM Mumbai holds the distinction of being the oldest hospitality institute in South East Asia. Since its inception, the institute has been at the forefront of nurturing the aspirations of countless students, turning their dreams into reality.

India's G-20 Sherpa, Amitabh Kant, graced the occasion as the Chief Guest. He praised IHM Mumbai for charting new territory and reshaping the landscape of hospitality education. He highlighted the institute's legacy of being ahead of the curve, guided by exceptional leaders who understood the impact of holistic education. Notably, IHM Mumbai alumni have emerged as champions in the hospitality sector in India and abroad.

Speaking at the event, Amitabh Kant emphasized the vital role of the hospitality sector in achieving India's vision of a 'Viksit Bharat' by 2047. He noted that India's recent hosting of G-20 conferences solidified its standing as a cultural powerhouse and a premier destination for an authentic experience. With India poised to become the world's third-largest economy by 2027, there will be a surge in Indian travelers globally, creating more opportunities and responsibilities for the hospitality sector.

Jayashree Bhoj, Secretary of the Department of Tourism, Government of Maharashtra, and Chairperson of the Governing Body of IHM Mumbai, presided over the function. In her address, she emphasized the history and contribution of IHM Mumbai in shaping India's hospitality sector.

The event also saw the felicitation of former students and notable alumni for their contribution to the institute's development and the hospitality sector. The lists of awardees are as below:-

Hall of Fame
Shashank Warty - Former Area Vice President The Leela Palace Hotels & Resorts. Group Director Jaypee Group, Sr. Vice President Indian Hotels Company Ltd. Batch 1968.
Shirin Batliwala - Former VP F&B IHCL - Taj Hotels & Resorts. Batch 1969.
Malvinder Narang – Former Area Director / Director of Corporate Administration in Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai. Batch 1970.
Sunil Malik - CEO at World Class Hospitality Consortium, New York USA. Batch 1972.
Param Kannampilly - Chairman & MD, Concept Hospitality. Batch 1974.
P.K. Mohan Kumar - Former Area Director & GM Taj Luxury Hotels, Chief Operating Officer, Taj Gateway Hotels and MD & CEO Ginger Hotels. Batch 1974.
Gev Desai - Former Area Chef ITC Hotel Maratha, Mumbai, The Luxury Collection. Batch 1975.

Achievers Award
Kuldeep Bhartee - CEO, Peerless Hotels Ltd. Batch 1983.
Rohit Khosla - Executive Vice President North & West India Indian Hotels Company Ltd. Batch 1985.
Zubin Songadwala - Vice president for the South and East, ITC Hotels. Batch 1989.

Dayal Advani - Founder Director Hospitality Solutions. Batch 1975.
Dr. C.V. Ravindranath - Founder Krishna Beach Resort. Batch 1979.
Sheila Vasan - Independent Director – Chrysalis. Batch 1988.
Sanjay Vazirani - Founder Foodlink. Batch 1989.
Dheeraj Gupta - Founder Jumboking. Batch 1995.
Kainaz Messman - Founder Theobroma. Batch 2001.
Kamlesh Barot - Founder Revival Hotels HCM Course

Special Chefs
Ramchandra Iyer - Former Chef in Taj. "Pillar of Taj Shamiana". Batch 1980.
Manoj Vasaikar - Chef proprietor of three Michelin Couvert restaurants in UK. Owner - Indian Zing Limited UK. Batch 1985.
Salil Fadnis – GM at Sahara Star and President of WICA. Batch 1991.

Shatbhi Basu - First Indian Female Bartender. Batch 1980.
Ruchita Verma - Dean at NMIMS School of Hospitality. Batch 1990.
Mukul Dimri - Principal IHM Shimla. Batch 1990.
Sonal Holland - Sonal Holland is the first recipient of the Master of Wine title in India. Batch 1995.
Laxmi Todiwan - Founder of IWH Forum. Batch 1997.
Vikas Bagul - Founder of School of European Pastry. Batch 1999.

Other Industry
Ajit Thomas - Environmentalist. Batch 1991.
Dr. Nitin Nagrale - CEO India & Emerging Market at Quality NZ, Founder and General Secretary - Hospitality Purchase Manger's Forum (HPMF). Batch 1995.
Terence Lewis - Performing Arts. Batch 1997.
Amita Karve Godbole - Performing Arts. Batch 1997.
Karan Singh Grover - Performing Arts. Batch 2003.
Nandish Sandhu - Performing Arts. Batch 2003.

Pillars of IHM, Mumbai
S.L. Dhargalkar (1963)
Ismay Gomes (1968)
Jyotsna Bhosle (1977)
Avril Sule (1977)
Viswanatha K Iyer (1980)
Sanjeev Kacker (1980)
Jaeson Cardoz (1983)
Jayant Kathe (1982)
Aileen Sequeira (1981)

Dr. Nisheeth Srivastava, Principal of IHM Mumbai, expressed gratitude to all the guests, award winners, and associates for the success of the event. He provided a brief description of the institute's major achievements and expressed great pride in its continuous growth and contribution. Established in 1954 by the All India Women's Central Food Council through the efforts of Lilavati Munshi, IHM Mumbai, which began with just six students, has played an important role in the hospitality industry by educating more than 50,000 graduates to date.

5 February 2024 Kikkoman Introduces Its First-Ever Dark Soy Sauce Crafted for India

Kikkoman, a leader in soy sauce production with over 350 years of history, has launched its inaugural dark soy sauce tailored specifically for the Indian market. This innovative product marks a significant milestone in Kikkoman's history, as it is the first time the company has created a dark soy sauce distinctively designed for a specific region.

Recognizing the visual preference of Indian consumers for rich, dark colors in Chinese and Pan-Asian dishes, Kikkoman embarked on a four-year journey to develop a natural dark soy sauce. Unlike many dark soy sauces on the market that rely on chemicals and artificial additives for color, Kikkoman's new offering maintains its commitment to natural brewing processes.

Crafted using the same four key ingredients—soybeans, wheat, salt, and water—that define Kikkoman's classic soy sauce, the new dark soy sauce undergoes a specialized brewing process to achieve its rich, deep color. This innovative approach ensures that chefs and home cooks can enjoy a dark soy sauce that not only enhances the visual appeal of their dishes but also delivers the authentic flavor and umami that Kikkoman is renowned for.

"We set out to create a dark soy sauce that goes beyond superficial color enhancements," said Shohei Yokobari, Product Manager for Kikkoman Dark Soy Sauce. "It was a huge challenge to develop a natural product without added coloring or flavoring agents, which is why it took four years of relentless effort and innovation. We are proud to present Kikkoman Dark Soy Sauce—a culmination of our rich brewing history and cutting-edge proprietary technology."

Chefs across India have already praised the new sauce for its complex flavor profile and natural color. Chef Vikas Seth, culinary director at Embassy Leisure, Bengaluru, noted, "The flavor profile is complex and deep, and if I do a blind tasting, I can easily distinguish a dish made with Kikkoman Dark Soy Sauce from one made with other soy sauces."

Chef Huang Te Sing, executive corporate Chinese chef at The Oriental Blossom, Marine Plaza Mumbai, called the new sauce 'fantastic,' praising its umami element and perfect color balance.

Kikkoman looks forward to contributing to the enhancement of India's vibrant food culture by assisting in the creation of delicious new experiences through its products. Recognizing the richness and diversity of India's food culture, Kikkoman aspires to cater to the full spectrum of preferences.

Kikkoman Dark Soy Sauce is available in two variants: 440g and 900g, targeting the food service market.

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Editor's desk

Ekta Bhargava(Managing Editor)

Dear Readers,

Welcome to yet another enchanting issue of Better kitchens, the very first issue of 2023.

The issue is a bespoke chain where every loop with its intricate pattern is connected to the other creating the final product. The first motif focuses on the Better Kitchen Culinary Challenge, Season 4 Grand Finale held in mid February, 2023 at Sheila Raheja Institute of Hotel Management. However, the feat wasn’t achieved overnight and it took unceasing determination and zeal to reach this apex.

It was after journeying in 14 cities that Better Kitchens finally went on to launch the magnanimous event in Mumbai where the winners of all 14 cities were invited for the finale along with a couple of wild card entries. The participants were encouraged to use millet in any one of the recipes that they planned to rustle up. Thereafter it was a complete treat to watch the participants’ flow of creativity into their preparations. The outcome was made even more conspicuous on account of 2023 being declared as the International Year Millets by United Nations at the behest of the Indian government to create awareness and increase production as well as the consumption of the grain.

The event comprised four intense levels of competition to evaluate the culinary and presentation skills of the respective participants wherein the jury consisted of the who’s who of the culinary industry.

The winner of the grand finale was awarded a scholarship of USD 5750—under Chef Scholarship’s Exchange Visitor Program (US J-1).

The edition also sheds light on how a stream of content was introduced to them in the course of four workshops in order to equip the finale participants with the astute knowledge of the sundry topics relevant to strategies and the principles of the upcoming industry besides gearing them up for an illustrious future in the industry, Food Business Entrepreneurship, Food Media and Styling, Molecular Mixology, The Bar School, and Interactions with HR Manager were some of the topics touched upon by the moguls of the industry.

Flip through the pages to read the initiative taken by Better Kitchen by signing an agreement with IHM-Lucknow to start an Incubation Centre. Other than that, the magazine covers the latest news on the hospitality trade besides an article on Mexican cuisines by Retd Secretary Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Gol that completely graces the leaves of the issue. Also, an article on Uttar Pradesh Awadhi cuisine is included to take the local gastronomy far and wide. Furthermore, Amul, Nandini & Milma controversy are a few other interesting reads that promise to keep you hooked on the issue.

We hope that you enjoy reading the issue to the hilt. Suggestions and ideas to spruce up the magazine are always welcome!

Happy reading.

Ekta Bhargava
Managing Editor

Weekly Recipe Contest Starting Every Sunday31 December 2023 - 6 January 2024

Better Kitchen has started a weekly recipe contest on WhatsApp Group - Gourmet Delight with Better Kitchen. The members are home chefs and professional chefs. The recipes contest is open only for the group home chef members. The winning and chefs choice recipes are featured in Better Kitchen website. Five times Winner will get a chance to meet celebrity chef and interact with him/her about the recipe.

The celebrity chef will modify the recipe and give a new twist in the recipe. The modified recipe will also be featured in the Better Kitchen website as well as magazine.

Interested in joining the group? Send an email with your name, email ID, mobile number and city to


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Latest Events

EverestBKCC Season – 415 Cities, 7500+ Teams in a tough culinary competition yielded Winners

11 December 2022

Better Kitchen Culinary Challenge (BKCC) is India’s largest and most trilling culinary challenge for final year of hospitality students. BKCC is a culinary challenge with a distinctive difference. It not only offers a unique platform for budding chefs to exhibit their talent, and an ideal springboard to launch their future but also provides a great opportunity to showcase brands to target the exclusive audience across India.

Better Kitchen Culinary Challenge Season 4 has begun its exciting competition journey from Bhopal and has completed the journey so far in 9 cities. We will be visiting 6 more cities before the national finale on 17-18 February, 2023 at Mumbai.

Better Kitchen Culinary Challenge Season 4 is supported by Incredible India – Ministry of Tourism, GoI; Worldchefs; Indian Culinary Forum; Western Chefs Association (WICA); Gujarat Culinary Association; Culinary Forum of Goa; Chefs Association of Five Rivers; Chef Association of Garhwal and Hospitality Purchasing Managers’ Forum.

Learn MORE