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“Anthony Bourdain Was My Hero,” Says Heartbroken Masterchef Vikas Khanna

About The American Masterchef Who Ended His Life On Saturday

“We worked together many times. I’m so heartbroken.Anthony was my hero.I looked up to him and was privileged to have bonded with him.He hated veg food.I told him until he visits India he wouldn’t know the pleasures of vegetarian cuisine.I had first met him when I was doing a tasting menu with mangoes at my midtown restaurant Purnima in NY.I did not get a chance to talk to him then. The second time we met I cooked for him at the Rubin Museum. I told him that I was researching extensively on Himalayan foods, UTSAV and creating Holy Kitchens documentaries.

He just said one thing: keep pushing the limits. Later, he was hosting CNN’s Parts Unknown in India and he wanted me to travel in Punjab with him to show him my hometown. I could not travel to India at that time. But I was soooo happy that he started loving Indian veg food and asked me for recipes which were eventually used on the show. There are many pressures on a chef’s life that could have killed Anthony.There is a lot of drug usage….Time management issues. Small spaces to cook in. Michelin Pressure. Fire hazards. Customer service issues. Health and mental hygiene issues. Nepotism. Demanding critics. Labour issues. Emotional distress and breakdowns. Standard consistency. Long hours…oh being a chef is not an easy job.People only see the food on the table,not the fire in the kitchen. I have seen individuals of great skill go down in a jiffy. It’s the curse of those who are in the quest of perfection.Sorry if I’ve said too much.I idolized Anthony. I can’t believe he’s gone.”

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