Chef’s Recipe to Marital Bliss
Love At First Sight
Celebrity chef Inam Khan says, the moment he saw Fareesa, he knew he would spend the rest of his life with her. He says, “Right after I met Fareesa, I looked at my sister (Rizwana Khan) and smiled. She read my smile which was basically saying yes, this is it. I’m going to spend the rest of my life with her.”
In a few days they were engaged and after three months on December 24, 2007, he got married to this lovely woman says Inam, who was featured in popular TV shows on FOX News, shows in the US and his restaurant Maharaja of Ohio in Dayton that has served Al Gore, Noam Chomsky, Naomi Campbell, Cindy Crawford, Bruce Willis, AR Rahman and so on.
My Roots, My Love,
Inam, who gained popularity with his Steak House 1 at Masab Tank and Steak House 2 at Banjara Hills in Hyderabad after coming from the US, where celebs, film producers, expats and businessmen drive in for dinners, says, “Destiny brought me back to Hyderabad from the US. It was only one call from my mother, the woman, who has always been strong and only thought about a bright future for her kids. She was not sounding as confident as she always used to be.”
He continues, “She said over the phone with a trembling voice that she wants to see her youngest son as she is not well and also my father who was suffering from glaucoma had lost his vision. In my close to a decade stay in the US, I never felt as helpless as I felt after this phone call. I couldn’t sleep the whole night. I was looking through my bedroom window where my new Mercedes was parked and my thoughts about leaving my successful restaurant which I had established after years of hard work and my newly acquired fame was making my ability to take the right decision very capricious. But somehow it was the unconditional love for my parents that dominated over my materialistic achievements and I made up my mind to fly back home to Hyderabad after eight-and-a-half year.”
Inam has been featured twice on US Fox News, was a guest speaker on National Public Radio and personally catered food to several Hollywood actors and was the first Indian to perform interactive cooking sessions for professors from Harvard and MIT.
Seeing his parents after such a long time was definitely a great relief and joy for him. “Travelling and getting exposed to various cultures and traditions always helped me retain my own religious and traditional values. I always believed in arranged marriage and for me marriage is just not the beginning of a bond of two individuals but also of two families. I had several marriage proposals from the US and Canada but I had always preferred getting married to someone special from my hometown,” says the celebrity chef, who has looked after the diets of Mahesh Babu Jr NTR, Rana Daggubati, Samantha Ruth and other celebrities.
Were there any up and downs? “Of course, no relationship is without ups and downs. Sometimes small differences occur because of miscommunications. It’s a constant effort from both the partners which makes marriage a success. Initially I used to be very concerned about my new career which I had decided to begin here in Hyderabad. It took nearly to two to three years to properly adapt to the weather and the environment here,” he says.
Stirring his conversation further, he says, “I still remember when I had started my first Steak House at Masab Tank, which was nothing but a small road side cafe, Fareesa used to encourage me and make me feel confident that this is just the beginning.”
Just like right amount of salt, pepper and spices are required to make a dish delectable, Inam feels the most important ingredient to achieve success is the support of one’s companion. “It might sound clichéd, but what I have achieved today, would not have been possible without the my beloved wife’s support. Though we still fight on some silly things but we both know how strong our bond is,” he says.
The Chef’s Wife
Food is a family obsession, he says. Despite having sampled some of the best foods from around the world, chef Inam prefers the taste of his wife’s cooking. “Lots of my guests tell me that my wife must be very lucky because I cook so well and I just smile. In reality, I just enjoy her cooking. It is amazing how she cooks so many varieties in no time and every dish tastes incredible to me,” says the chef, who is blessed with three children – Fahad and twins Hamza and Alina.