Watermelon Sashimi Scaled

Mock Foods & Food Stories

It’s difficult to say what attracted me first, Food stories or Food itself, i.e, cooking. Growing up in Lucknow, where they say – Ek plate Khana, ek pateela kisse (A plate of food served with an Urn full of stories) I’d like to think it’s more the former.


Stories of Asharfi wali dal, that was cooked with gold and that brought an old dead tree to life, or of ‘Parind Pooris’ that had small birds fly out of them when cracked, are just a few common ones that you would hear sitting in an erstwhile Nawab’s or Taluqedar’s house.

‘Deception’ or ‘illusion’ in food is not a new concept. We talk of mock meat and substitutes now but the practice has existed right from the Khansamas/Bawarchis and Maharajs of yore, who were challenged or who challenged themselves to constantly create a surprise element to impress their masters or innovate an alternative to make up for the lack of an ingredient.

While working on my latest recipe for Eggless Omelette (recipe up on my youtube channel), I reflected on ‘mock foods’ and was reminded of a Sashimi and steak I created using watermelon in my restaurant in Boston. The Sashimi was served with fake “caviar” and trust me, people refused to believe it wasn’t Salmon.


If you are in a culinary journey or about to begin, just surrender to it. Food, its stories and the possibilities will take you on a journey of their own..


  1. Lovely Ranveer !
    I am parimal Mani
    I love to watch ur video bcz of your smile.. I have a request pls show us food for menopause .. Stage woman
    Calcium & estrogen hormones rich food salads raitas rotis juice sweet.. Plant based diet ji..
    Pls include me in your video when u prepare this video.. My humble request.

  2. Very interesting folk lore’s you connect to your expertly culinary presentations. I just adore your talent whisked into your YouTube cooking-shoo—king! Thank you & keep up the good job. I hope many young kids of today (technology is ruining i.e some ruined bundles(kids) know that), & learn something from you.
    Mrs Soni, NY.

  3. Veerji,love your Channel and the gastronomical magic you create each time…identify with your roots too…grew up in Kanpur! Katahal( Jackfruit) as a mutton surrogate was truly lauded!Do show some more such mirages! Thanks

  4. Luv the above write up I think anyone who does the daily cooking have lots of innovation I remember in childhood mother made a soya bean curry which I mistook as mutton and now me too do many such items for my children

  5. Dear chef,

    I created bbq glazed brisket by using gluten flour, these days it’s getting in trend to create vegan dishes that replicate meats.

  6. I still can’t believe my eyes ain’t no way such telented chef could be from up (lucknow) but you ain’t really from their ig you were born and raised in Punjab and then moved to Lucknow for work that’s all.

  7. Dear Chef !!
    It’s a pleasure to see and hear from you. I am a big fan of your recipes. The smile you carry all the time you cook is appreciated. My mom used to say one should be happy n calm while making food… as you also say hanste khelte jo ban jae wah wah ji swaad aaaaaaaa gaya ✌🏻

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