Pershore Patty meets Sudha Saha– Head Chef at Entouraj Indian Restaurant, Droitwich to ask a few personal questions and for a general nose.
Tell me a little bit about how you came to own or work in your business?
My passion for cooking was ignited back when I used to watch my grandmother cooking in the kitchen, she was an xceptional cook. Following this, I went on to complete a Degree in Catering Technology & Applied Nutrition in the Institute of Hotel Management, and subsequently trained in the Taj and Ambassador Group of hotels, which is where I honed my skills. I have spent years progressing through restaurant kitchens in Dubai, India, Spain and on moving to the UK, I continued to refine my skills and trained in a Michelin starred French restaurant.
What achievements awards or accolades are you proud of?
In 2010, I won the Midlands Restaurant of the Year Award in The Good Food Guide; and in the same year got recognised by the AA and received a Rosette, followed by listings in the Michelin Guide and Harden’s Guide.
Any new announcements or events that you would like new and existing customers to be aware of?
Once lockdown eases, my cookery masterclasses will resume on the last week of the month in Entouraj.
What makes your business unique?
I always try to push the boundaries opening customers eyes to our multi-cultural society. My signature dishes on the current entouraj menu are innovative, and look to demonstrate the creativity of the restaurant menu.
Favourite restaurant to visit if you get a night off?
I’ll be heading back to Simpsons in Birmingham when I get the opportunity.
Last thing you watched on TV?
Unfortunately, I hardly get the time to watch TV, so I can’t really comment – such is the busy life and long hours that I work as a Chef.
Which person in your life do you admire and why?
My parents, I learned the work ethic and discipline from them.
What was the last gift you gave to someone?
I made a birthday cake as a gift for an 83 year old man who lives near me and has been self-isolating since the Covid 19 pandemic started.
What is your favourite smell in the world?
The smell of spice while cooking. It is very appetising.
What is your favourite kind of sandwich?
Smoked salmon, capers and mayo on brown bread.
Who would you want to cook your last meal on earth and why?
Omg there are too many on my list. I guess having cooked a final meal for my family and friends would be the perfect way to leave this world.
What is the most annoying habit that other people have?
Disorganised and Pretentious
If you could eat only three foods for the rest of your life, what they would be?
Seafood, fruit and fresh salad
What’s your claim to fame?
When I won ITV’s – Britain’s Best Dish for the Midlands and South East region.
Which food and drink business (other than your own do you wish you had created?
The Hand and Flowers in Marlow – Tom Kerridge has re-defined pub food to next level.
What is the best piece of advice you ‘ve ever received?
Don’t be pushed around by the fears in your mind, be led by your dreams.
If you could be anywhere else right now, where would it be?
I’d love to be in New York City.
What is the best thing happened to you last week?
Recently I got to cook for a charity, for the NHS –key workers. It was lovely to be able to give something small back and support them during this time.
Name a product or services you love so much that you’d happily be that company spokesperson
KoppertCress UK – They produce the most exciting micro herbs, which just compliment the presentation of my progressive style of cooking.
As a child, what did you wish to become when you grew up?
I studied a lot and was academic, so I wanted to study medicine.
What is the perfect combination of pizza toppings?
Bell peppers, gherkins, pepperoni, jalapenos and mushroom.
What was the worst job you ever held and why?
When I was completing my management trainee programme after finishing my Degree in Hotel Management, as part of my job, I was sent to the engineering department of the hotel to train across all areas – needless to say it was very boring.
What was the last thing you ate?
A bowl of fresh salad, with iceberg, tomato and cucumber and fillet of pan-fried seabass.
Favourite cut of steak?
What is the most impressive thing you know how to do?
I guess after years of practice I have perfected balancing the flavours with the use of local and seasonal produce. I like to hope that I present my dishes in the form of a kind of artistic culinary masterpiece.
What do you hope never changes?
My passion for cooking and pushing the boundaries of Indian cuisine. I like to create something exciting, different; a revelation of flavours on the palate of my diners.
Entouraj is a true celebration of flavour, with the finest local produce taking centre-stage to create an East-West love affair like no other.
Pushing the boundaries of traditional flavour combinations, award-winning chef Sudha Saha is at the helm of the entouraj kitchen, creating dishes that celebrate taste, texture and the very best Indian cuisine.
Located in Cutnall Green, the restaurant aims to bring Indian dining into the 21st Century, fusing traditional cooking methods with innovative techniques to create a menu that leaves a lasting impression. Entouraj’s chefs take the time to prepare, cook and present their dishes in a way that truly defines Entouraj. Passion is at the heart of everything they do, and they take pride in every element; from their welcoming atmosphere and customer service, to an impressive food and drinks offering.
With over two decades of experience in the restaurant industry, Sudha Saha is one of the UK’s most celebrated Indian chefs; an award-winning chef, he has been recognised by both the Michelin and Hardens Guides. He works tirelessly to push the boundaries of Indian cuisine, fusing local and seasonal produce with global influencers, in order to refine his predominantly Indian fare.
“Great chefs are passionate about their food; taking the time to understand each individual ingredient to cook and create something truly wonderful. I hope you all enjoy our brand-new dining experience and fall in love with the food in the same way that we have.” – Head Chef, Sudha Saha.