Author and chef Simon Majumdar has taken over the culinary industry.
He's known around the world for his appearances on Food Network shows including "Cutthroat Kitchen" and "Iron Chef America."
“All the people I know, I love judging them because they get intimidated,” he said. “It's always nice having these big stars working for you because they do get nervous like anyone else. So I love working on those shows.”
Majumdar is known to be a tough judge on many cooking competitions, but he sees his role as important to help contestants improve.
“It's always good to have criticism in the true sense of the world. Criticism isn't just about being mean,” he explained. “It's about judging something and seeing how it can improve and what's good about it. It's a good way to express my opinion and give them advice particularly with this new generation.
Majumdar was in the area to hold a special demo at the Oregon State Fair, an event he was eager to explore.
“I'm very excited given I'm a fairly new American citizen. I think it's almost illegal to not go to a state fair,” he said. “I'm going to eat things on sticks and fried food. Primarily I'm going to do a demo of my wings from around the world.”
Majumdar said he was excited to get to spend time in Portland and experience its many dining options.
“I come through quite a lot. It's a great eating city, so whenever I fancy some great food I'll hop on here and try a few of the microbreweries and restaurants,” he said. “Mother's is one of my favorite places for brunch. Also, I have a sweet tooth, so I love Salt and Straw. It's one of the few places I'll ever stand in line for food.”
As far as his favorite foods, though, he says there's nothing like Indian cuisine.
“I grew up eating an odd mixture of food. My mother was Welsh and my dad was from cow country in India. So it was a real mixture. My real passion is Indian food and it's what I tend to cook a lot,” Majumdar said. “It's a vast cuisine and I love exploring it. I think it has that perfect combination. You have heat and sweet, salty and sour. I think if you crave that you can have something that really delivers.”
As far as what he wants to do next in his career, Majumdar said he is he's sticking to his plan of going everywhere and eating everything.
“We are in the middle of a new season called Camp Cutthroat which is Cutthroat Kitchen meets Survivor which is crazy fun and really great fun,” he said. “Also, a new season with Bobby Flay so there's a lot coming up.”
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