Garima Arora, the 30-year-old chef became the first Indian to receive a Michelin Star Award for her restaurant, Gaa at Bangkok. On achieving this highly acclaimed accolade Garima said, “It’s still sinking in.” The journey to this high point of her life has been a long and interesting one.

The “Michelin Star” is awarded as a hallmark of fine-dining quality with restaurants around the world proudly promoting the oldest European restaurant and reference guide.

Garima was a mass media student working as a pharma journalist in Mumbai. A turn in the road and her dedication at an age of 21 brought her to the world-famous Cordon Bleu culinary school in Paris. Working with some of the legends in the industry like René Redzepi, Gordon Ramsay and Gaggan Anand provided her with the best kind of environment to grow as a chef and harbour her skills.

The Punjabi flavour

Garima recalls how she never entered the kitchen unless her father was cooking some international cuisine.

“In our house there was this rule that lunch was always Indian food while dinner was some kind of international cuisine that my dad would make as he would travel abroad a lot and so as a 10-year-old girl, I ate everything from Italian, Mexican to Middle-eastern food,” says Garima.

The team at ‘Gaa’

Gaa was opened in April 2017. The restaurant has a team of 12 chefs from seven different nationalities. Garima describes how cooking is so creatively satisfying to her and how it turns to be a source of peace. On bringing the Indian touch to western cuisine she said to The Mint, “As Indians, we have mastered the art of being able to draw all the umami flavours from vegetables. So for me cooking with vegetables is one of the ways in which I incorporate the Indian element in my food.”

Also Read : Meet Asma Khan, Britain’s First Chef on Netflix’s ‘Chef’s Table’

Picture Credits: The Mint

Rachna Chandira is an intern with SheThePeople.TV

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