When not cooking, Chef Saransh Goila loves taking short trips. We talked to him about his culinary discoveries at the new menu launch for Cinépolis curated by the man himself. By Kumar Shree

Chef Saransh Goila

When did you start cooking?

I started when I was 13—the first meal I made was 20 aloo ke parathe, with some help, for my entire family. I used to watch Chef Sanjeev Kapoor’s food shows with my grandparents… my family would wait for me to cook on certain days, and it became a thing. I came to choose my career after [Class] 12—my grandfather suggested I enroll in a hotel management school to become a chef. I trained for three years in the Institute of Hotel Management Aurangabad.

Who were your role models?

I looked up to to chefs Vineet Bhatia, Sanjeev Kapoor and Manish Mehrotra. I’ve taken inspiration from Jamie Oliver too. The way he teaches is amazing.

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY CHEF @sanjeevkapoor My mentor, guru, idol and the original Celeb Chef who actually taught the entire country about Indian food and the currently trending *regional food* way back in the 90's! I feel it is no coincidence that two people I thoroughly love and respect share their birthday 🙂 or maybe I have a thing for this sun sign. 😋 . I decided to share this major throwback picture from August, 2011 when Chef SK gave me a lifetime opportunity to find my calling as a Chef and guided me to cook and explore Indian food and to share my learnings with the world. Today whatever I am and where I have reached, all stems from the universe he created and it wouldn't have been possible without his support. I hope you have an amazing day, Chef. Aaj khane mein #namakswadanusar dalega 😉 . . . #sanjeevkapoor #cheflife #chefsk #sadakchef #eatpraylove #kitchenlife #indianchef #indianfood #throwbackthursday

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What do you do to blow off steam?

There is a lot of pressure when you’re running a restaurant. I sometimes take two to three-day trips or I take a day off for myself and do nothing. I’m a big movie watcher—for me, relaxation means watching four films in a day.

And what are your favourite films?

The Shawshank Redemption, Schindler’s List, Rocky, Saaransh—just because I get my name from it—and The Lord Of The Rings [trilogy].

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🍿+ 👨‍🍳 Brand Chef @cinepolisindia 🎉 . I would be lying if I didn't tell you that THIS was a childhood dream. My closest friends and family would agree that if I wasn't a Chef I'd be a professional movie buff or critic 😂 From hosting Oscar & Filmfare themed parties to curating movie themed menus at home, my passion for movie dining has translated into 350 screen across India. 🤯 It has been extremely tough to curate this menu as it had to be a nation wide launch. My attempt is to encourage movie goers to choose pav over burger and kebab over hot dog 😛 Learning every day from experts at Cinepolis on how to scale up your ideas. Trust me, it is difficult and we are still learning! Hope you enjoy #NewMenuForFoodies when you watch your next movie. As of now it'll be available in Cinepolis cinemas that has their Cafe – Coffee tree and the premium VIP!

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What inspired you to come up with the now famous Goila butter chicken?

In this case, the dish chose me. Any chef could have a butter chicken recipe. It just so happens that my recipe got popular, and it kind of stuck to me. People started calling me ‘The Butter Chicken Guy’. I didn’t aim for it to become what it did.

Chef Saransh Goila

Your 20,000 km road trip in India over 100 days for your show earned you a Limca Book Record. Any memorable experiences from the road?

When I was going to Ladakh, I was near Rohtang Pass, where there is always a long traffic jam. There I met a bhelwala, who told me that he waits for this jam to happen every day and that he travels to the top to sell chaat and bhelpuri. He was one of the most amazing people I’ve met.

Top five culinary discoveries?

Surat is a great unexplored food destination. I was very excited to know that jhalmuri is actually made in mustard oil, so when you’re going to Kolkata, please try it. I got really good jhalmuri on Russell Street. Karachi Bakery in Hyderabad was amazing. I had a great food experience in Himachal, in a tiny village in Spiti—they served me local ghee, rajma, and siddu. In Assam, I tried black sesame pork, which blew my mind.

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Happy Happy day today for farmers all across India and different communities who celebrate this harvest season with a different name but the same reason. Gudi padwa – Ugadi – Cheti Chand – Navreh – Sajibu Nongma Panba are the ones I am aware of! We use the same occasion and change of season to clean our systems by flushing out toxins and technically also observe intermittent fasting by eating one meal a day. I like to call this a "Vrat brunch" 😂 : Kuttu Aloo ke pakode Khatte Kaddu ki sabzi Samak ka pulao Shahi paneer Kuttu ka chila Sabudana kheer . Favourite was the kaddu and crispy pakoras! Though I can not wait for some Puran Poli and some Halwa + poori + channa eventually on Asthmi. . . #sadakchef #homecooking #homecooked #indianchef #food #indianfood #fast #festival #eatpraylove #food52 #brunch #cheflife #chefs #ugadi #gudipadwa

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Your favourite Indian dish and international cuisine?

Sindhi kadhi with matar wale chawal, because my mom is Sindhi and she makes it fantastically well. Favourite international cuisine is Italian, because I feel their ingredients and flavour profile are very similar to our cuisine.

Do you have any preferred joints?

Favourite place in India is Indian Accent. Elsewhere, burgers at any Shake Shack.

Food trends you foresee?

Regional Indian food is going to be big. Many regional-food pop-ups are happening—like Bihari or Coorgi—and maybe a few of them will get converted into restaurants.

Your top five ingredients?

Eggs, lemon, shahi jeera, saffron and garlic.

Related: Find Out How Chef Sanjeev Kapoor Is Curating Local Indian Menus For Global Palates