Tag Archives: Home Chef

The perks of a Home Cooked Meal!

Pune, a hub for Students & Engineers naturally attracts food businesses. After all – ‘paapi pet ka sawaal hai’! But, how many of us are really happy with the food that we eat every day?

Eating out in restaurants is a treat for many families, but the youth today prefers ordering over stirring their own curries. Badly cooked meals at offices, canteens or by maids leave one with nothing but a big hole in their pockets. It is then when we start longing for ‘Ghar ka Khaana’ in Pune.

Home cooked meals have added advantages over restaurant quality food in Pune. I bet you would agree about it, but here are reasons which will explicitly prove our point.

#1 Nutrition –
What is the best source for Proteins, Carbs & Fats? Obviously the food that you consume! Restaurant and commercial foods are notoriously high in fat, salt & sugar! Did you know a shocking fact – A child who eats a McDonald’s Happy Meal  has already consumed 90% trans fat allowed for the whole DAY!
These choices are absolutely fine for occasional indulgence but if you are having this everyday, you’re in for some bad health ahead!

Anju Khengat.jpegDelicious and Nutritious can go hand-in-hand!

#2 Food Allergies and Sensitivities –
Do you have Gluten intolerance, allergies, or gastritis due to consumption of stale food?Best of luck getting things customized at a restaurant! Home Chefs on the other hand are happy to customize orders just the way you like it, honey! ;)

Interestingly, at MealTango you can talk directly to the Home Chefs, so the food is made just to your liking. Take a look at the profile of a popular chef as an example.

#3 Food Safety –
Don’t always bother to check the use by dates, or always confused while picking up vegetables? You don’t have to worry, the food that you get delivered by our Home Chefs, is consistent with quality and is stored and treated the way it should be! In fact, chefs at MealTango are provided training from Australia’s Department of Health and Human Services, in how to handle and store food.

Ritu profile.jpgOur HomeChef Ritu, preparing a special Barbecue Dinner!

 So fellas, the next time you are contemplating a Healthy, Customized and Personalized option – You don’t have to worry! Close your eyes and nourish the winning benefits of a Home-Cooked Meal by our Home Chefs! Over and out to Healthy Living! :)

You can see options for chefs in Pune here!

Bon Appetit!

pune banner shortened.jpgMealTango is a food company that specializes in providing preservative free, freshly made food that’s delicious to eat and delivered to your door. Visit MealTango.com/Pune for more!

Who is Vivek Kothakonda? Meet Pune’s Best Chef, Second Runner Up!

So the news is out and MealTango has announced Pune’s Best Chef! With over 40 participants, 350+ Shares and 37K+ Views, foodies across Pune have finalized the winners of the contest!

Among the 40+ contestants, there were many special ones! One of them is Vivek Kothakonda, our Second Runner Up who got the maximum number of votes!

On our journey to Mumbai from Pune, we got a chance to get up close and personal with our fellow winners. Here are some excerpts from our conversations with them -

pbc5.jpgMealTango’s Best Chef Contestant: Vivek Kothakonda

MealTango: “How did you develop such a strong passion for cooking?”
Vivek: “As a kid, I grew tasting my Mom’s utterly delicious and innovative recipes. I used to sit on kitchen platform chatting with her and observing her cooking style. This stirred an interest in me and I grabbed the opportunity to cook for my dad each time my mom was traveling. The real battle was when I moved out of my home. A bachelor for 6 years! Imagine what all I had to do for survival! That is when all those experimentations began and so did my passion for cooking! It is correctly said that Necessity is the mother of all Invention! “

MealTango: “That is interesting! So what do you love to cook the most?”
Vivek: “I specialize in South Indian, North Indian and Chinese Cuisines. I am much known for my Veg Dum biryani among friends and family members. Other dishes which are mostly liked are Poori with Aloo Bhaji, Mirchi Bhajia, Double ka Meeta sweet and Carrot Milk made my me.”

MealTango: “Mmmm…My mouth is already watering, Vivek! So a quick question – Do you see yourself becoming a HomeChef?”
Vivek: “Definitely! It’s time for Pune to taste the real South Indian hidden delicacies.”

MealTango: “We are waiting! What would you say about Pune’s Best Chef?
Vivek: “Pune’s Best Chef Contest is a good initiative by Meal Tango which can bring recognition,motivation to hidden talents. This year I am one of those lucky do-nuts!”

MealTango: “One moment that you would cherish for life?”
Vivek: “I would cherish this moment of being one of the winners of the contest held by MealTango! Reason being that I have won many medals and prizes in various competitions as a student or as an employee. But, this award is going to be my very first award in the field where my heart and passion is! It has its own place!”

MealTango: “Couldn’t agree more. So Vivek, what is your mantra for Life?”
Vivek: “It’s simple – Live happily! Help the needy!
As my contribution to the society, I donate homemade food to the street kids whenever possible. It is quite painful that even today there are so many children who sleep with empty stomach. It is my humble request to everyone to not waste food. Rather, pack it and feed the ones who really need it!”

Divija,his wife, terms his food as ‘SCRUMPTIOUS! IRRESISTIBLE! LUSCIOUS!’ Vivek, a project lead working with an IT giant specializes in Indian and Chinese cuisines and makes sure that all his dishes have the perfect appearance, texture and taste! Vivek soon wishes to transform his passion for cooking into a full-fledged profession!

MealTango wishes Vivek all the luck with his future ventures!

Contact Vivek on: Facebook- Vivek K Venkata

Who is Girija Kirpekar-Naik? Meet Pune’s Best Chef!

So the news is out and MealTango has announced Pune’s Best Chef! With over 40 participants, 350+ Shares and 37K+ Views, foodies across Pune have finalized the winners of the contest!

Among the 40+ contestants, there were many special ones! However, there was one who stole a lot of votes and won our hearts at the cookout competition.

Just for some extra information – The cookout competition was a surprise visit at the contestants home and they were asked to chalk out a dish in front of us. The dish was then tasted by a panel of judges present with us and ONLY THEN, the results were declared!

On our journey to Mumbai from Pune, we got a chance to get up close and personal with our fellow winners. Here are some excerpts from our conversations with them -

pbc8.jpgMealTango’s Best Chef Contestant and Pune’s Best Chef: Girija Kirpekar-Naik

MealTango: “How did you develop such a strong passion for cooking?”
Girija: “I completed my degree in Hotel Management and Catering Technology from Pune, where I was raised all my life. On completion of my training at the Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, Mumbai, I moved on to Singapore. Due to unfortunate circumstances, I had to switch my career in a corporate sector. I dreaded each day of my job and realized that all I craved for was the kitchen & food world! So maybe, in those moments of transitions, I found my inner self and started to pave my career in a new direction. ”

MealTango: “And what was that new direction?”
Girija: “ I decided to move back to India. For a change, I wasn’t alone this time! I bought back two things that I love the most – My children and my love for cooking! This is how a new concept called ‘Kitchen Confidence Studio’ was born! ”

MealTango: “Tell us a little more about Kitchen Confidence Studio?”
Girija: “ Established in August 2014, Kitchen Confidence Studio (KC) offers cooking classes to children in a safe environment that encourages discovery and creativity. While learning food preparation skills is the main ingredient at KC, each class adds a heap of kitchen safety, a scoop of etiquette, a handful of table setting, a pinch of menu planning, and laughter to taste”

MealTango: “That’s quite interesting Girija! Any quotes that you strongly stand by?”
Girija: “ I strongly believe that food has the power to bring and bind people together.”

MealTango: “One moment that you would cherish for life?”
Girija: “There are two actually! One is the inauguration of Kitchen Confidence Studio and second being me awarded by MasterChef Australia Celebrity Chef, Christine Manfield at the place where I was first trained! I am super excited to go back to the place where it all began! Rush of sweet memories, aaaah!!”

MealTango: “Wonderful! We wish you all the best and great success ahead!”

Girija specializes in Thai, Maharashtrian, Goan, Sindhi, Parsi and Continental Cuisines and runs her Kitchen Confidence Studio in Aundh, Pune

Contact Girija on: Facebook: Girija Kirpekar-Naik

Love is in the Air!

“Love is in the air everywhere I look around
Love is in the air every sight and every sound
And I don’t know if I’m being foolish
Don’t know if I’m being wise
But it’s something that I must believe in
And it’s there when I look in your eyes”
 

Have you ever felt special because of Someone? Always wanted to Thank Someone for being there in your Life? Well, MealTango is stirring up a perfect plan for the Month of Love!

Between all your hectic schedules, days of never-ending deadlines and bundles of pending work, you can still make your loved ones feel special! All you have to do is trust our Home Chefs and they will add the right amount of love to any dish that they prepare to make Your Valentine’s Special!

I think you all should get an extra brownie point for guessing the theme of our Next Month Special! Our Menu is going to be up real soon. But just in case, you have a special request, you know whom to contact!

Meanwhile, our Chef Ajinder has a special message for you,
“You’ve got your sweetheart and we’ve got ours too, to help you impress yours! Heart shaped Chocolates in a wide range from liquor truffles to paan filling we’ve got them all! Soft orange jelly, coffee caramel, mint, etc.  just give us the flavor of your choice and we’ll wrap it up in Chocolate for you and your loved ones! Assorted packs from 6 pieces to 24 pieces beautifully embellished and packed! We have a box for every budget!” You can order the chocolates here.

BTW, this is just one of the offerings that is up for grabs! Imagine the widespread that you get to choose from! In short, DO NOT HESITATE, WE REPEAT, DO NOT HESITATE, and send in your special requests and we will have it beautifully planned for you! :)

 

So, How do you plan to spend your Valentine? Share with us and let us know while we sit back and enjoy this sweet special Gulab Jamun Cheesecake! :)

ajinder gulab jamun cheesecake.JPG

Until Then!

With ,
Yours Truly!

So… What is MealTango?

A food company with a motto ‘Great foods from Great Homes. Delivered to your doorstep’ is now making a lot of people in Pune happy and content with their seIMG_4370rvice and home cooked meals.

MealTango was started with a belief that the best food that you can get is from homes. The co – founders of MealTango are husband & wife duo – Saket Khanna and Neeta Valecha.

But how, when and where did it all start??

Let’s rewind……..

Saket had been abroad for a good 8 years, and really missed home food. After graduating from Oxford University, Saket was with his wife in London. They had an Indian movie producer’s visit, who absolutely relished a simple traditional Indian breakfast of Aloo Parathas and adrak chai. Having lived abroad for so many years made Saket empathize with the Indian movie producer.
Neeta and Saket immediately felt that good home food is something completely missing from peoples’ lives. Unless you live with your mother, can cook yourself, or have a wife/husband who loves to feed you, you can forget about it!!! And so they decided to return to India to start MealTango. The idea being, one should get home food wherever one should go.
Christian Manfield (Guest Judge Masterchef Australia) with our Home Chef Tejaswi in Mumbai

Christian Manfield (Guest Judge Masterchef Australia) with our Home Chef Tejaswi in Mumbai

 Currently, MealTango provides delicious home made food (right from simple daal-chawal) to exotic lasagne and regional favourites like Chettinadu Egg Curry …). All the recipes and the food is even approved by a food taster before coming onto the website, and strict quality control measures are in place to help ensure that you aren’t getting just ‘any home food’, but that it is really good food made in a good home using high quality ingredients  -  just like you would want!!
Celebrity Chefs Ranveer Brar and Blogger Rushina at The home cooking demonstration at The MealTango zone.

Celebrity Chefs Ranveer Brar and Blogger Rushina at The home cooking demonstration at The MealTango zone.

Our Co - founder Neeta serving the Onam Sadya, which was a huge hit!!!

Our Co – founder Neeta serving the Onam Sadya, which was a huge hit!!!

 MealTango delivers across Pune, India. However, over 400 homechef requests are with the website from across India and even countries like Italy and Australia.
At MealTango we believe we are providing food lovers the opportunity to sample really delicious food that is NOT harmful to you – unlike the preservative laden ready-to-eat stuff, or the restaurant food we resign to.
                                                                               With MealTango, you can select your
location, and get the food delivered to your doorstep in as little as an hour (depending on your location).
MealTango is delighted to provide free delivery on even low cost orders, and provides food for parties and companies (corporate orders) as well.
We don’t believe in mass production of food, and so usually do not take on orders of over 50 people.
 It is possible to join MealTango as a homechef, and also get corporate discounts and subscription meals.
So… if you are on the fence, take a dive and join in the food revolution.
Until next time,
Cheers,
Team MealTango

 

You can also choose to dine with a family when traveling in India and Internationally. Simply visit MealTango.com and click ‘Dine in a Home’.

A proud and exciting moment!!!

Team MealTango is excited to share with all you readers that we got featured in the Australian Finance Review Newspaper!!!

Christine Manfield, Chef, traveller and guest judge of Masterchef Australia is famous for her restaurants like Universal and Paramount in Sydney, Australia. She is also an avid traveller, who has been visiting Mumbai since the late 90′s. She was hosted by a MealTango Home Chef Ms. Tejaswi, who prepared an authentic Maharashtrian Thali.

Christine has mentioned about MealTango in her article “Walking and eating guide to Mumbai”

Here is what she wrote:

HOME COOKING WITH MEAL TANGO

Meal Tango is a brilliant initiative started by Saket Khanna – you choose online from the various options and regional cuisines available, from Assam, Kerala, Rajasthan, Maharasthan and more, and experience excellent, authentic home cooking at a shared table in a private residence. I had lunch with a Maharasthan family who educated me into the subtleties of the various sub-genres and clans within the community. It’s clean with lighter flavours and lots of vegetables.

MealTango Meal in Mumbai

Christine Manfield and friends try out MealTango in Mumbai

MealTango Host Tejaswi with Christine Manfield

Christine Manfield with homechef Tejaswi, and family

We’re delighted to be recognized by Christine Manfield and by the group that joined us from Australia.

You can also choose to dine with a family when traveling in India and Internationally. Simply visit MealTango.com and click ‘Dine in a Home’.

Cheers,

Team MealTango

Why I started MealTango…. Our C.E.O speaks….

People assume I must be a huge foodie, to have started a website like MealTango. But here’s the cold- hard- bitter- truth: I was NOT a foodie!!

Do I have a greater understanding of food now? Sure! But the motivations behind starting MealTango were not for a want of fancy food. Read on to know more.

Rewind to 2005. I sat in a Boeing 777 on a rainy day in Mumbai. I was flying to the USA for a short assignment. Little did I know that this six month assignment would extend into a six year one.

Like every good Indian traveller, I was carrying a ‘Prestige Pressure Cooker’ in my bag, and I was confident I would learn to cook, or at least get by on pizzas, sandwiches and Italian food in general… After all we ate out at all those restaurants, right?

But I soon realised how unprepared I was for food.

Cooking, I soon realized, may be pleasurable and relaxing for some others. But I hated it. With a passion!

Eating out every day proved to be inherently expensive. Even boring. And the food at the Indian restaurants… just wasn’t the same thing. It came to a point where every time I boarded a flight to India, I was thinking… “Home Food!”

And so all my meetings with friends back home in Pune, India, would be over a freshly made home fare: Daal chawal and pickle, idli chutney with butter, hot tea with pakoras, or a North Indian peas pulao  dinner.

And each time I returned I dearly missed the delicious flavours from back home.

Eight years on, I had now moved to the UK, completed an MBA from a well known university, and was now working in London. My wife, Neeta, joined me (hoorray! she cooks and loves to feed me!), and we started hosting travellers in our home through sites like 9 flats, couch surfing and Airbnb.

why saket started MealTango

Saket Khanna: Accidental Foodie! (along with Neeta Valecha)

We then had a host of international travellers who crashed with us. One day, however, an Indian movie producer dropped by.

On this day, Neeta was making an irresistible Indian breakfast – Aloo parathas, served with butter, pickles, and tea.

So I asked our traveller friend if he’d like to join us. To which I got a delighted “yes, sure!”

And as he dined with me, we noticed how much he was savouring each bite.

Later that evening, when we were roaming our neighbourhood in Angel, London, Neeta said, “Why don’t we do something so people can easily get authentic dishes from homes wherever they go”.

mealtango-about

Neeta strikes the ‘M’ pose at a MealTango Stall

Given how much I’d missed good home food, and remembering how our guest had dined with gusto – I couldn’t have agreed more.

After some deliberation, we decided to embark on creating what’s now called “MealTango”.

Home chef Perzen (aka Bawi Bride) with Damodar (CEO, Reliance Retail), Bela (chef), Jyot (Social Entrepreneur), Sangeeta (Author), Rochelle (Author), friends and Founders Saket and Neeta!

And so, like I said, I was NOT a foodie. Just a plebeian who loved flavors from back home.

Until next time….

Cheers!!!