Banker to homemaker to YouTuber, meet the chef who cooks up “magic” for millions

Chef Meghna Kamdar strongly believes that women should invest in themselves. She had worked a decade in banking when her daughter was born. “Crèches, flexi-hours, and child-care provisions didn’t exist back then,” says Kamdar, who took a break to raise her child. There was a prolonged gap, of nine years, but she made a stellar comeback. Kamdar now runs a food channel on YouTube – Meghna’s Food Magic – which has 1.5 million followers.

“Motherhood is truly a thankless job. I suffered from severe depression, being alone with the child at home all day,” she says. Kamdar found herself taking an interest in cooking, and signed up for an advanced baking course– baby-girl in tow sometimes, burping and feeding on the last bench with her student-mommy. Desperately trying to rebuild her identity, she sat her husband down, and demanded that he share the load. He transitioned into a role that would allow him to work remotely, and she joined college to pursue her chef dreams.

Then came the most crucial step, of working on her overall persona so that she could start an online cooking channel. According to her, women tend to let themselves go as motherhood becomes all important. “I groomed myself, brought my health back on track, lost 20 kgs, learnt how to speak in front of the mirror and, finally, decided to invest in myself and my business,” she says. The couple built their own studio, started posting videos and other content twice a week and, within two years, she went from being Meghna to Chef Meghna.

“During long breaks, women lose confidence in their abilities and skills. But middle-aged Indian women today must make the most of what they have – and they have to ask for more,” she says.

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