• Monday, June 05, 2023


With Indian dishes at his heart, marine pilot wins MasterChef title

(Representational photo: Santhosh Varghese/iStock)

By: Chandrashekar Bhat

A MARINE pilot, who loves to blend classic French food with Indian spices, is declared BBC One’s MasterChef 2022 Champion, becoming the 18th amateur cook to claim the title.

Eddie Scott, from Beverley in East Yorkshire, faced off strong competition in the final week from eventual runners up Pookie Tredell and Radha Kaushal-Bolland.

“It’s everything. My whole life I feel has been building up to this moment. I can’t believe I’m standing here as the MasterChef champion. It’s just been the most stressful and the most enjoyable! I feel like I’ve just discovered who I am as a cook. It’s the best feeling ever,” he said after he was declared the winner.

Scott’s love of cooking stems from a family passionate about food – from his mother’s baking skills to his father’s experimental dishes and his grandparents’ perfection of Punjabi classics – all inspiring him to learn more in the kitchen.

On his food style, he said: “I love to cook the Punjabi dishes I grew up eating with my family. But my real passion is the great Mughlai cuisine: the historic royal dishes of Old Delhi, Lucknow and Hyderabad. I so admire classic French and Indian cookery and like to create my own fusion of the two fascinating foodie cultures.”

His winning menu started with turbot, topped with caviar, tempura oyster, cucumber compressed in dill oil and a champagne beurre blanc.

The main course was a Hyderabadi Dum – a caraway and nigella seed pastry-topped chicken biryani, spiced basmati rice with crispy onions, chicken thigh cooked on the bone, all flavoured with saffron, Kashmiri chilli powder and cardamom, with cucumber raita.

To finish his menu, Scott served his take on the classic French dish, St Emilion au Chocolat – chocolate mousse with a prune purée centre, prunes soaked in Armagnac, almond frangipane, and an almond and Armagnac crème Chantilly.

“You are a born cook,” MasterChef judge Gregg Wallace told the winner.

Scott, who spent eight years as a navigation officer in the Merchant Navy travelling the world and has piloted ships on the Humber for the last five years, said he would love to own a restaurant.

“Everything in my life has been building up to doing something in food. It would be amazing to be able to cook in a top restaurant and with the most famous royal Awadhi chefs in Lucknow. It would also be exciting to write about food or even do some more TV. What I’d really love is to own my own restaurant – sharing my food memories and nostalgia.”

Eastern Eye

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