Award-winning cookery writer, Mridula Baljekar is the best-selling author of 27 Indian cookery books, including her book, Great Indian Feasts, which was awarded both ‘The Best Asian Cookbook in the World by Gourmand World Cookbook Awards 2006 and ‘Cookery Book of the Year’ in the same year.
Mridula presented 52 shows for Carlton Food Network, her own series ‘Mridula’s Indian Kitchen‘ and 13 episodes of the highly acclaimed ‘Spice Trail‘ in 13 locations across India.
She also appeared on Channel 4 (Gloria’s Open House), BBC2 ( The Heaven and Earth Show) and Sky One. In India she appeared on the most popular channel, NDTV and also Z TV.
She is regularly invited to present cookery shows on regional and national radio stations such as LBC Radio, BBC Southern Counties, BBC Berkshire, BBC Birmingham and the Food Programme on Radio 4.
She owned a contemporary Indian restaurant in Windsor, Berkshire, England, winning several prestigious awards, including the winner at the Best in Britain Awards 2002-2006.
Mridula’s food is described in the media as ‘Heaven on Earth for the senses’, ‘Route to spice heaven’, and ‘traditional Indian cuisine with a brilliant modern twist’. Mridula’s food attracted the attention of politicians and celebrities alike. She catered to a garden party in No. 10 Downing Street and a private dinner party for Jerry Hall.
She was born and raised in Assam in North East India and when she moved to England she turned her childhood passion for cooking into a highly successful career.
When Mridula moved to England, she qualified as a PA and worked for a Director of a Merchant bank in the heart of London’s financial institution. Mridula soon turned her attention to the subject she has always been passionate about and began teaching Indian cookery at the local Adult Education Institute. Her students were delighted with her recipes and encouraged her to write her own book.
It was turned down by 35 publishers but Mridula kept submitting it and The Complete Indian Cookbook was published in 1990, and sold over a million copies worldwide.
One evening she was giving a demonstration at the Tante Marie Culinary Academy in Surrey, and she had no time to cook for her husband after she had cooked for both her young daughters so she put a Tesco’s ready meal in the microwave.
That night when she got home at 10 o’clock after teaching she went straight to her memory typewriter and wrote to the Head of Marketing. “I didn’t know his name or anything, I just wrote dear Head of Marketing, what you are selling is not Indian food. You are mis-representing our cuisine, these are my recipes I will be very happy if you use them.”
Two or three weeks later he called and the rest followed from there; a fiery friendship began and Mridula spent 6 years consulting Tescos on their Indian ready meal ranges.
Today Mridula really is recognised as the best cook and writer in her field.
As well as running highly successful cookery classes, she has also launched her own line of gourmet products which are on sale in specialist deli stores around Britain. Her Rhubarb Chutney was awarded a Double Gold Star in the Guild of Fine Food Great Taste Awards
- Mridula offers consultancy services to upmarket restaurants, like the award winning Mango Lounge, and spice manufacturing companies like Schwartz.
- Dinner with Mridula is a chance to turn a dinner party with friends into a special event by having a celebrity chef cook dinner in your home.
- Mridula’s cookery demonstrations are highly popular, and she has appeared at venues like the London Book Fair, Speciality and Fine Food Show and BBC Good Food Show. She lectures, sits on judging panels and judges for the Guild of Fine Food’s Great Taste Awards and the National Curry Week.