Shaheen Peerbhai

September 23, 2007

Shaheen Peerbhai

January 2014, Paris.

Hi! My name is Shaheen and I love having to do anything with food.

I’m from Bombay, India, currently based in Paris.

I created this blog in September 2007 as a place to document my escapades in the kitchen. Little did I know back then that this blog would go on to change my life.

I have worked in a commercial pastry kitchen in Bombay. I ran my own catering business for a brief period that got hugely popular in a short period. I was also on the panel of food writers that were sponsored by the EU for a week long food and wine program across Italy.  I’ve also taught a bunch workshops on baking. Over the years, my tiny space on the internet has been recognised both locally and internationally.

Ever since I was a teenager, I dreamed of studying at Le Cordon Bleu and becoming a pastry chef. “That’s not a job!” everyone said. So I finished college, and took on a regular marketing job, just like the other kids at school. Fast forward to 2013, I now have three prestigious scholarships from The Culinary Trust (2011, 2013) and The James Beard Foundation (2011) under my belt, that turned my teenage dream into reality. These scholarships are awarded to just one candidate each year.

As a part of my 5 year goal for one of my scholarship essays, I wrote that I see myself as an editor of the country’s top food magazine. A few weeks later, I get an email from BBC Good Food India to be the food editor (!!!). Unreal. I couldn’t take it up because of my move to Paris (bittersweet), but I did work on launching the magazine in India and  created two big features – one on ten stunning desserts and the other on no-fuss Mediterranean. Look! I continue to contribute to the magazine whenever time permits.

I now have a certificate for both Patisserie (London) and Cuisine (Paris) from Le Cordon Bleu, and it feels terrific. I loved every minute of school, especially Paris, and I can’t wait to go back there and learn from my favourite chefs. While at school, I discovered that I actually do enjoy cooking and not just baking. In the summer I spent in London I did a stage at a bakery and a pizza van and I was even lucky enough to get into Fergus Henderson’s kitchen at St John Bread and Wine where I learned a heck lot about butchery.

Since early 2012-May 2013, I worked on my pet project called Friday Lunches with my partner, where we ran a little business feeding 80 B-school students at our weekly lunch pop-up. We also expanded to a handful of schools in Paris.

I’m currently working in kitchens, learning new things one cut at a time. I also conduct baking classes every once in a while.

The occasional co-author behind this blog is my husband, Arjun, also sometimes referred to as orangefoodie on the blog. He doesn’t cook much, but loves to eat like nobody else I know. Back in college he made me a luscious Creamy Oreo Pie. Now, that’s a sign of keeper.

Things I’m loving right now: summer peaches, elderflower cordial and a new found obsession with peanut butter.

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{ 218 comments… read them below or add one }

1 L November 10, 2011 at 5:33 AM

I stumbled upon your blog about a month back, and I’m so glad about it. I’ve been reading through your blogs now, and I feel very happy and proud of you for your achievements. It’s absolutely inspiring to see your passion for food AND life! Keep up the great stuff. And good luck for all your endeavors!

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2 Tania November 12, 2011 at 12:24 PM

hello there!
Hi, I’m Tania from Indonesia. I love your blog!
So, I took accounting in college, and I will be graduating soon. My parents want me to work at the office, but my true passion is baking. so I’m thinking I want to take a pastry school in France. Do you know which school is good but not very expensive? Thanks!

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3 trish November 15, 2011 at 8:16 AM

Hi Shaheen – I love your blog and guess what? My boyfriend just decided to take us to Paris for new years. omg – i’m so excited. Our dates are Dec 28th – Jan 12th. Would you be interested in meeting/cooking together? Trish

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4 Vivek Dumbre December 10, 2011 at 3:23 PM

Hi Shaheen,
I am Vivek from Pune,I love your blog,I just came across it 2 days ago and i have to say you aaare really talented ,you truly deserve the scholarship .
Your receipes are awesome,just tried your latest egg sandwich and it was really good.Keep up your passion for food and keep posting delicious recipes!!!!!!
Regards

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5 Bronwyn December 31, 2011 at 5:23 AM

Hello Shaheen!
I just stumbled on your blog through the Bandra Project website. I live in Bombay and do a lot of cooking and blogging: I really like your blog, especially the minimalism. I’ll be following! Looking forward to trying some of your recipes.

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6 The Purple Foodie February 15, 2012 at 12:54 AM

Thanks, Brownyn! Lovely to discover your blog as well. :)

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7 Madhu January 23, 2012 at 5:55 AM

I stumbled on your blog a couple of years ago. Liked it and would drift in n out. Glad that I can say….Congratulations on getting to Le Cordon Bleu! A wonderful goal and achieving it through your passion and dedication is fabulous!
Learn and enjoy the process of learning. Good Luck :)

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8 gitanjali verma February 3, 2012 at 5:34 AM

Hi, I just got to read your blog. Its fantastic. I am surely going to try some of the recipes posted by you.

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9 Kartik Negi February 12, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Dear Shaheen,

Just came across your blog and i must admit this is the best designed blog i have ever came across. Being a techie i am interested in knowing the making of this design. Is this any word press them or any other ready made css you have bought or available as free licence? If yes then please(if you don’t mind) give me the reference of this template. And in case you got it made custom designed from any designer then please give its reference. This designer has got a very nice sense of web design.

Of course your food posts are equally amazing but that is what i noticed secondly.

Thank you and Good day!

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10 The Purple Foodie February 13, 2012 at 9:14 PM

Thanks for the kind words. Your questions, answered: http://purplefoodie.com/faqs/

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11 Kartik Negi February 14, 2012 at 7:05 AM

Thanks for reply. May be i should have gone through faqs first because your faqs are very well organised and includes almost every possible question which might arise to a visitor of your blog. Great work, go on! -SHL…

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12 Sumayya Jamil February 12, 2012 at 5:19 PM

Fabulous how inspirational. I feel your passion! Learning to give in now to it but yay to u for following your dreams!

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13 Navin February 29, 2012 at 3:24 AM

I was just thinking for a while what your are doing in Europe for a long time .Did not look in to your profile for a while…
Congrats on getting the scholarship ..All the best with what ever your are doing..
Please let me know who ever had done your webs site and maintaining it …

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14 Natasha Sharma March 23, 2012 at 1:02 PM

Hi Shaheen!
We’ve linked to your blog for recipes for cupcakes for we just put up a Maharaja’s Moochh cupcake on our blog of Icky, Yucky, Mucky. Especially linked to the Nutella cupcakes which are deliciously gooey!

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15 Parvinder April 10, 2012 at 4:56 AM

Dear Shaheen
My passion for cooking is what brought me to your website, actually was trying to locate some imported ingredient here locally (Rocking Mumbai) thats how i bumped into you :). I am handicapp coz of arthritis but cooking is what makes me happy and rocking. this passion of cooking is going to help me with my financial needs.Will be staring business to supply UNIQUE STARTERS and DESSERTS for which my research is on to get some good receipes and ingredients. Hope to get your assistance for the same as I see your beautiful created website. Its nice to see your work and achievements.best of luck.

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16 Christine April 14, 2012 at 9:26 PM

Hi Shaheen,
I came upon your blog today via your homemade hazelnut extract post (I can’t wait to try it!) and now I just read your ‘About Me’. How wonderful that you are now pursuing your teenage dream–finally doing what makes you happy and what seems to be your true calling. Enjoy your journey! :)

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17 SRS September 11, 2012 at 2:51 PM

Hi – came across this website whie looking for ways to make sun dried tomatoes @home out here in Chennai! Love this space – you have done some inspiring work!! Hope my food dreams come true some day too :)

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18 Katie October 1, 2012 at 3:56 AM

Wow what a story! You are so lucky.

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19 kalyani & siddharth November 7, 2012 at 9:33 AM

Hey There! Your blog has inspired us a lot! So here we are with our brand new Blog, about Food n Life! Do check it out n let me know what you think! :D

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20 kalyani & siddharth November 7, 2012 at 9:34 AM

well here’s the URL : http://insoooomanywords.wordpress.com/
Thanks! :)

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21 Ketan November 8, 2012 at 2:41 AM

Wow! LCB! I too am planning a course there, but not sure when. Soon is what i keep telling myself, but hey,! Its now or never!
You, however, mylady Rock.

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22 Marie November 26, 2012 at 2:05 PM

Hi Shaheen, I just discovered your beautiful blog yesterday when googling a baking recipe. I love the look of it and look forward to browsing through it from now on. I’ve just subscribed so I won’t miss anything in future! I live in Ireland, but lived in London for several years so I really enjoyed the features on places to eat in both. I quickly read through your biography and I have to say well done – you’ve achieved so much. Wishing you continued success.

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23 Smitha March 5, 2013 at 8:27 AM

Where is the post on Eating in Rome? It’s disappeared :(

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24 Yasmin March 5, 2013 at 9:39 AM

Hi Shaheen
I envy you in Paris & Rome but never mind I will be shortly going to Rome & Paris & have jotted down yr various escapades esp in London. Recently I also got a big box of Valronha cocoa so please do tell how I can make best use of it as I woudn’t want to waste it–right now I am simply hoarding it since my daughter has also got me a big pack of Posner dark Belgian choc powder frm Dubai—-Just tell me how I can make best use of both—I also love baking

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25 Shaheen March 6, 2013 at 3:36 PM

Make the passionfruit truffles!

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26 ritu March 29, 2013 at 9:59 AM

hi shaheen,
love ur web site.writing to u d moment i checked out sum of ur blogs.congrats u n ur website have a lot of positive vibes,the whole feel pulls at d strings of my heart.m in bandra n into d healing n art field,fengshui n food as medicine field too.in short anything creative so glad to b here.i wud like a lill info on blogging,got too much to share,keep it up,lots of luv n hugs

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27 penny June 9, 2013 at 7:37 PM

Hi Shaheen – Best wishes to you! I came across your blog a year ago when we moved to mumbai. Love the recommendations for baking needs. Now I need to know if you can recommend an oven. Yes there are plenty small ones. I am used to the traditional large US ones. What would work best here? And not for fancy use but usual baking for my children. Thanks. Penny.

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28 Mohana August 8, 2013 at 12:25 PM

Your blog is perfect! I am so glad I found it! I was in Bombay for a year and really regret not getting a chance to attend your workshops! Le Cordon Bleu is my dream too and Its lovely that you are living every bit of it!!
Keep blogging!

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29 Imad Waked August 22, 2013 at 6:23 PM

Dearr Shaheen,

Your blog is just a beautiful surprise. I am a Lebanese/American marketing professional with a secret passion for cooking and a dream of becoming a chef and having my own little restaurant in a beautiful little street of Beirut. I am looking for financing to attend Le Cordon Bleu and the info you provide has been of great help. You are an inspiration, makes me feel conviction and strength when I sometimes feel its crazy what I want to do :)

All the best to you always and keep the great work.

Imad

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30 catering coordinator jobs vancouver September 8, 2013 at 2:02 PM

Pork butt (which despite its title is essentially the shoulder) may be the most prevalent cut applied here.
It can be cheap too. You can also make excellent BBQ using belly very fatty and delicious,
but is more apt to flare up.

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31 Asmita October 1, 2013 at 7:28 AM

Nice to “meet” you. I mostly sew, and since you can’t do much on an empty stomach sometimes I cook too. Discovered you through kitchn.com when I was trying to make some mascarpone. Your recipe worked, and worked well. Glad to have found the blog, will hop in often, both for cooking and writing inspiration.

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32 sathya priya October 23, 2013 at 1:44 AM

I hopped in to your blog just a while ago .You have such a passion for food,pastry.You have followed your dreams.That’s a good one

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33 Addie December 12, 2013 at 8:37 PM

Oh my! I just stumbled upon your blog. All the best in your endeavours. Le Cordon Bleu and all. Sounds pretty exciting. Will be revisiting your blog for sure. You are certainly living many people’s dreams, including mine.

Power on, on macarons of love! Can’t wait to see the greatness you achieve!
Addie

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34 Harleen December 26, 2013 at 12:54 AM

Hi Shaheen,
I am a passionate baker and stay in Mumbai. I am surprised I did not discover your blog before! It is so well written and holds a wealth of information right here!
So excited to go over all your posts!
Please continue this journal with your recipes and experiences :)

Lots of love and Merry Christmas!

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35 Sharon January 22, 2014 at 6:23 AM

Hi Shaheen,

Amazed at your blog – and the sheer mass of information it shares!

I’m an amature baker – well, I bake for unsuspecting friends ! Have been on a hunt for certain hard to find ingredients & stumbled upon your blog! Thank you so very much for the handy tips & store addresses here in Mumbai.

Best wishes,
Sharon

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36 Megha February 4, 2014 at 1:24 PM

Hi,
I love this blog.
I just moved to Paris from Bombay after being in an out for a while. Its great to find good advice on markets et al.
I think we shall get along. :)

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