From a dentist to a chef, Priyanka Biswas’s journey has been far from ordinary. Coming from a small village in Bangladesh, Priyanka is proud of who she is today. “I belong to Bangladesh, which was the first part of India. I still remember my grandfather used to say that just to sweep our corridor, we would need 32 people as it was such a big area. We have even got news from somewhere that the house has been divided half into a museum and half into a hotel. In my village in Bangladesh, we used to cook food in Nadh, which is where cows drink water and eat food in. We would cook dal, rice, fish for the whole village. My grandfather migrated from Bangladesh to Bilaspur, Chattisgarh city, but my grandfather’s two brothers are still settled in Bangladesh,” she says.
Thanks to her grandfather that she started cooking. “I fell in love with cooking because of listening to my grandfather's cooking stories. Bengali cuisine is a cuisine which does not need many spices. It’s all about mustard oil, green chilies, ginger, cumin, and salt. My grandfather was a very good cook and my grandmother too. My grandfather used to cook fish in coconut shelve. When you get to know that with minimal effort, you can make such a beautiful thing, so you automatically get attracted to it. When we separated from our family, that time there was only one way to support my father, my mother started providing tiffin services,” she says.
She adds, “I have inherited my cooking skills 101 per cent from my grandmother. I loved all the food, whatever she used to cook. My father says that my father’s grandmother was also a great cook. He always says that my cooking reminds him of his grandmother.”
Priyanka was seen in the top nine contestants of Master Chef, and says that the journey has been phenomenal. “The journey from a dentist to Master Chef has been a dream that I always wanted to live. As my parents had a love marriage, so everyone used to say that your daughter will also do this shameful act. As I am healthy, everyone used to body shame me. They used to say that she is so fat, be it, my teachers or friends, everyone used to see me as being lazy. I was a national awardee in painting in CIART (Central for Indian resources and training), one of the reputed institutes of India. I earned a black belt in Taekwondo and I am also a 5-year classical trained dancer. I sing also a little because of my mother as she is a double MA in music. However, Everyone would still underestimate me. But later, I became a dentist and went to Master Chef, then there as no looking back,” she says.
Ask her what she loves to eat, and she says, “It is Bengali cuisine. I love Bengali flavours. The dish I am fond of, which my mother makes is this Bengali dish called begun Diya dimer jhol ( brinjal and egg cravy), dal made of tamarind.”
Talking about her future plans, Priyanka says, “I won’t say that Master Chef is the completion of my dream. I don’t think that I have achieved my dream, I believe that this is the first step towards my dream and I need to climb many stairs. I want to make my parents and my grandfather so proud of me. I want to make myself a brand and this is my dream. I really thank Master Chef which has given me an opportunity to climb my first step. I would like to say a dialogue from movie Yeh jawani hai Deewani, ‘Main bhagna chahti hu, main3`sss udhna Chahti hu, mai girna bhi chahti hu Bas mai Rukna nhi chahti hu,” she says.