Meet These Men Whose Passion For Cooking Is Reflected In Their Unique Recipes

This article originally appeared on Polka Cafe.

Prateek Thakker’s love for cooking is such that even when he is completely stressed or depressed, you would find him in the kitchen inventing a new dish. He values cooking more than any other activity or exercise. “It is about what I am. I love to make people eat. I love seeing people enjoy food and I want to make food that is good,” he says.

Image Credit: Prateek Thakker

He started cooking when he was 14 or 15 years old, when his mom left his older brother and him alone, when she went on a vacation. He adds, “My older brother and I experimented for the first time by making dal roti, sabji and rice. Of course we called mom and took instructions on how to make it, but post that we could make it easily. We made upma, poha and such simple things. Later when I turned 20, the first ever dish that I prepared was the Dum biriyani. I looked up for the recipe on the Internet and brought all the veggies and made it. I was very smitten by the whole biriyani bug then. Being a vegetarian, it excited me more than anything. And surprisingly it turned out well.”
Thakker considers cooking as a stress buster. He is usually found in the kitchen than partying over the weekend. “So i manage to pull out some time for cooking that way. Else, if I am home early I decide to treat everyone at home with some good food," he says, (smiles).

Specialty: Italian and Indian are my specialties.

Blog: prateekthakker.com
Instagram: @prat3ek

Most Loved Dish And Recipe: It is the Basil Pesto Pasta that mostly everyone loves. However the Basil pesto recipe can be found anywhere on the Internet, the recipe I am sharing is that of a Creamy Broccoli Sauce pasta that I recreated.

Image Credit: Prateek Thakker

Ingredients:
1 bunch of broccoli
1 small onion, chopped
7-8 cloves of garlic parmesan/cheddar cheese, grated
1/2 lemon
Pasta
Fresh cream
Olive oil
Vegetable broth
Salt & pepper

Method:
In a medium saucepan, cook onion and garlic in olive oil over a low heat until onions are soft. Add the vegetable broth (use the water in which the broccoli was boiled in) and broccoli and bring to a boil, season with salt and pepper.
Cover and boil gently for about 10 minutes, or until broccoli is very tender, stirring occasionally. Place broccoli mixture in a food processor or blender with lemon juice and parmesan cheese.
Pulse a few times until smooth. Saute some garlic in a pan until light brown, add fresh cream, salt, pepper and lastly Broccoli sauce. Toss in the pasta and sauce together and enjoy.

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