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Rocky and Mayur

Rocky and Mayur

Two food enthusiasts and TV anchors talk about their food journeys, travels and disasters

Sanchita Kalra
December 16 , 2014
03 Min Read

OT: What do you love and/or hate about your job?
Rocky: Free food and a friend.
Mayur: Free food and an open road.

OT: Which part of India are you yet to explore through your food journeys?
Rocky: We have only left out Manipur, Mizoram and Tripura and we hope to cover these as soon as possible.
Mayur: Also, we have to make a work trip to the Lakshadweep Islands and Andaman Nicobar Islands, then we would be everywhere in India.

OT: Any culinary disasters on a trip?
Rocky:
Wise words - a worm is a worm no matter how much you cook it. A worm is always wormy to eat, no matter how well it’s cooked.
Mayur: One of the funniest characters we met was Mr Bawa from New Bawa Cafe in Kufri, Himachal Pradesh. Sadly, his food was disastrous. He got a 1/10 but we heard it’s got better and now is at least a 2/10.

OT: The most exotic food item that you have eaten?
Rocky: Live grasshoppers at the Jungle and Snow Survival School of the Indian Air Force in Dalhousie. Funnily, they taste quite good and fresh once you have removed the head, wings and legs.
Mayur: The Akhuni (fermented soy bean paste) in Nagaland has to be smelt to be believed. It’s amazing in pork curry though, or so Rocky tells me.

OT: Tell us about your favourite food destination?
Rocky: Lucknow and Kerala in India. The little known and amazing food and wine destination of Slovenia is also an awesome place for superb game meats such as wild boar (ham) and venison (deer) salami.
Mayur: I love the food from Amritsar and Gujarat. For me, Slovenia has truly wonderful cheeses prepared in the traditional method and a huge range of vegetarian food. 

OT: Which cuisine do you think is the most underrated in India?
Rocky: Assamese cuisine is due its moment in the sun. It is a wonderful and subtle, healthy cuisine.
Mayur: True, Assamese cuisine has a huge host of fresh vegetables and forest products, the likes of which you will rarely see anywhere else. It’s slowly coming into its own.

OT: Is exploring new food joints also a part of your family vacation?
Rocky: Always. My daughter and I live for food and always pick food destinations. My son and wife though are more artistically inclined and pick historical and scenic vacations. The battle continues.
Mayur: We vacation in the US with my wife's family and the Americans are almost as crazy as us about food. So that's a fun voyage of discovery always.

OT: Other than experimenting with food, what do you like to do on holidays?
Rocky: I scuba dive and I am an eager birder and a bird photographer. I now have over 800 species of Indian birds photographed.  
Mayur: I enjoy spending time with my little kids. So, family vacations are kid-friendly but if I'm holidaying on my own I usually take a trek to the mountains. I'm an avid climber.

OT: What do you usually bring back from your trips?
Rocky: Spices, always. And as many food books as I can.
Mayur: Wine and cheese. 

OT: Where do you plan to travel next?
Rocky: I'm going to Gujarat to photograph migratory birds and am on the lookout for a good destination for coastal birds.
Mayur: I'm looking at going to a beautiful place in Manali to laze in the sun during the day and warm myself with a bonfire at night.

Watch Rocky and Mayur on FoodMAD2, every Saturday at 9pm on NDTV Good Times.


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