Chetna Makan: How I stay healthy

Known for her indulgent cakes with a twist, the popular baker talks street food, spices and eating her decadent creations…

First things first: how much cake do you really eat?

People think I don’t eat all the cakes I make, but I do try them all! I’ve got a very sweet tooth, but my meals are very healthy, which I’m sure helps balance out my cake eating habits. In fact, I’m probably made up of half healthy food, half cake!

What sort of foods make up the ‘healthy half’ of your diet?

I eat lots of lentils and vegetables. I cook with a wide variety of lentils – black, green, red – and they all taste so different. Everything is freshly cooked, which means I know what I’m putting into it. I don’t eat takeaways.

Are you a snacker?

No – for me a taste is just half a teaspoon. I prefer to have set meals. I don’t eat late and I think that helps my body. I usually eat with the children (aged nine and seven) at 5 or 6 o’clock and later maybe I’ll just have a cup of tea.

Have you ever had issues with your weight?

I was quite heavy when I first left home in Mumbai to study. Street food was my breakfast, lunch and dinner, and I used to eat at the stalls near our college. I did lose that weight – and then put it back on when I was pregnant.

This interview originally appeared in the July 2017 issue of Healthy Food Guide Magazine
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