Sony Entertainment Television’s and SonyLIV’s culinary reality show, MasterChef India has come to a befitting end after 13 weeks of entertaining viewers with delectable tasks that challenged the home cooks. A consistent effort to curate cuisines that ranked high on ‘TIP’ – Taste, Innovation and Presentation, the culinary reality show saw 3 finalists – Suvarna Bagul from Maharashtra, along with Santa Sarmah and Nayanjyoti Saikia from Assam make it to the ‘Ultimate Grand Finale’ that was aired on 31st March at 9 PM.

Joining the Grand Finale of MasterChef India was the legendary Chef Sanjeev Kapoor along with the Judges, Chefs Ranveer Brar, Vikas Khanna and Garima Arora where he judged the 3 finalists in the “signature three-course meal challenge”. In the ultimate test, home cook Nayanjyoti Saikia from Assam was awarded with a cheque of a cheque of INR 25 lakhs from Sony Entertainment Television along with the ultimate prize – the coveted trophy of ‘MasterChef India’ and the Golden Chef’s Coat. Santa Sarmah from Assam was declared as the first runner-up and Suvarna Bagul from Mumbai was declared as the second runner-up, they each received a cheque of INR 5 lakhs from Sony Entertainment Television respectively. The winner and the two runners-up also received medals from the Managing Director of Amul, Mr. Jayen Mehta.

For the first time in the history of the show, Chef Vikas Khanna brought Nayanjyoti Saikia from the small town of Tinsukia, Assam to the audition rounds. A fan of the recently turned 27-year-old, Chef Vikas had seen Nayanjyoti’s vision for the culinary arts on social media. Nayanjyoti was a star in the MasterChef Kitchen from the audition round when he’d presented the chefs with his distinctive dessert, “Choux au Craquelin.” His family had been skeptical of his journey in the show but when his father came to visit him in the MasterChef Kitchen and watched him cook up a storm for the judges, he had pride twinkling in his eyes. In the end, for the ‘Ultimate Grand Finale’, when it came to crafting his signature three course meal – Nayanjyoti chose to present Tinsukia on a plate. He started with ‘curried crab’, like the one he cooks for his family, catching crabs from the pond beside his house; he then cooked for the judges an Assamese style duck and ended with a mix berry sorbet which reminded him of growing up in the lush valleys and rolling hills of Assam.

From being selected for the Top 36, to being the first to be selected for the Top 16 and finally, winning the title of MasterChef India – Nayanjyoti has strived for the best and delivered. Be it presenting nostalgia for his hometown on the plate, with dishes from Assam or playing to his strength of being a baker and presenting scrumptious desserts, Nayanjyoti has wooed one and all with the magic of his hands. Here’s wishing ‘MasterChef’ Nayanjyoti Saikia all the very best for future endeavours!


Nayanjyoti Saikia, winner of ‘MasterChef India’
I had a simple dream and that was to go to MasterChef India and cook, but now I feel like all my goals in life are complete. I not only went to MasterChef, but I also got the apron and winning this intense food competition feels surreal! I had my self-doubts, but the three judges motivated us so much, especially Chef Vikas who has helped me so much since the day of auditions. The biggest thing is that my father is the happiest of them all; he was against the idea of seeing me cook but today, this achievement makes it all worth it. The opportunities that this platform has given us is unimaginable – being mentored by the best chefs in the industry, working in state-of-the-art food facilities, in professional kitchens and with ingredients that I had never seen before has made me learn so much.

Chef Garima Arora, Judge of ‘MasterChef India’
Nayanjyoti deserves all this and more. He came to the kitchen as an amateur home cook and the growth that we have seen in him has been exponential, making him the right choice for this win. He is grounded, he is rooted in the culture of his state and he’s willing to learn so I hope this experience will give him the chance to grow. Many congratulations to him and all the very best!

Chef Ranveer Brar, Judge of ‘MasterChef India’
I think Nayanjyoti Saikia is a very well deserving home cook. He worked behind the scenes, kept giving this season his best and eventually there was a consistency to the dishes he presented us with. Also, there is honesty, simplicity and purity in his food which made him win the show. This win is sure to inspire young viewers who can look at “being a Chef” as a profession and not just a hobby. This season, the quality of talent that was ushered into the MasterChef Kitchen was quite overwhelming and choosing a winner from amongst such talented cooks was tough but we made the right choice.

Chef Vikas Khanna, Judge of ‘MasterChef India’
I still remember the timid Nayanjyoti from Tinsukia who I went to meet in his house. I was so impressed by his vision and creativity and how he can turn food into art. He inspired me through his social media posts and so I decided that he was the right fit for MasterChef India. Nayanjyoti presented us with dishes that were close to his heart, weaving in ingredients from Assam, that reminded him of his home and that representation made him stand apart from the crowd. He had the ability to adapt, to learn, to transform himself and that is what a true Chef is all about. Nayanjyoti has a very bright future – he is constantly working towards his dream, and I am so grateful to be a part of his journey. All the best to little Nayan, he has miles to go and big congratulations for this win.