Shivaji Satam's voice fills with pride when he recalls the day Dr Shreeram Lagoo saw his play Dhyani Mani. "Dr Lagoo, an actor I admire, patted me on the back and remarked, 'Where were you all these years?'"
Recently, Satam was in the news for shooting an entire episode of the popular TV serial CID, in which he plays an assistant commissioner of police, in one single shot.
Born in Byculla to a textile mill worker, Satam studied at Antonio DaSilva School in Byculla till Class 6 and then joined a boarding school at Deolali, Nasik.
He made his stage debut in a Marathi play in 1975. With time, he graduated to Marathi films and is now is a regular in Mahesh Manjrekar-directed Hindi films. But he is best remembered as the distressed father of the gun-toting Sanjay Dutt in Vaastav.
Food for thought
I get up at 6:30 am and on the days I am free, I play cricket at Vakola. We have a good team consisting largely of Marathi theatre artistes. But if there is a shoot then I bathe, perform my pooja for 15-20 minutes and leave by 8:30 am.
I begin my day with a glass of hot water.
When I am shooting, I have a vegetarian meal because it's light and it keeps me cool.
I have four khara biscuits, two toasts and tea for breakfast. I don't know the tea brand, but whenever it changes, I get to know because of the taste.
I shoot for 10-14 days in a month for CID. Each day, the shoot starts at 9 am to 10 pm with only a one-hour break for lunch and 30 minutes break for tea.
I take my tiffin from home. It contains four chappatis, sabzi and a glass of milk. I add a little curd to it in the morning so that the curd is ready by afternoon. Four other crew members also bring their tiffins. After eating unit food for a long time, we chose to eat homemade food. Since we bring different types of food, it turns out to be a great feast.
In pulses, I like green chana, chowli and all kinds of dal. In vegetables, I like spinach and methi.
I skip rice for lunch but for dinner, I must have dal rice. Otherwise, I won't get proper sleep.
The spot boys in the unit, who have become like family members, make superb Suleimani tea — simple black tea with a few drops of lime. At home, I have tea with milk.
I relish batata wadas and samosas.
I like simple Maharashtrian food. Since I am a Konkani from Devgad (near Ratnagiri), I like fish cooked in classic Malvani style. I love Gujarati kadhi.
I learnt to make basundi from my wife. I can knead atta, but I don't know the proportion of water to flour so I don't try it. I can cook different combinations of dal and rice as well as chicken and mutton.
I make good basundi, omelettes and tea.
In fruits, my favourites are mangoes and papayas.
I prefer home food to restaurant fare. Once in a while, we dine at China Valley at Prabhadevi. My favourite restaurant is Gypsy in Shivaji Park. They serve lovely Chinese food. They have a Maharashtrian snack counter outside which boasts of excellent kothimbir wadi, sukhi bhel and amazing coffee. If we are accompanied by friends, it becomes an evening to remember.
My favourite kitchen appliances are the gas stove and fridge.
In desserts, I like rasmalai. My niece makes caramel custard that is simply out of this world. I like Natural's malai and sitaphal ice creams, and I like shrikhand, basundi and burfi. I recommend Gangar at Dadar for sweets.
Come rain or shine, I like drinking tea.
We shot an entire episode of CID in one take and so we celebrated the event with a bottle of champagne.
I love Scotch whisky.
I like to have mango/lime/chili pickle with dal and rice.
Before going to sleep, I have a glass of water.
My fridge is always stocked with Kraft cheese, guava juice and water.
Sanju and I became very close during Vaastav. We are friends even today and keep in touch with each other. We lunched together quite often. Mahesh (Manjrekar) has been one of my oldest friends, but he doesn't give me any special treatment on the sets.
While shooting for Marathi films, I would slyly eat Ashok Saraf's food because he brought typical Maharashtrian food with delicious bhakri.
From Pune, I must bring back bhakarwadi, Shrewsbury biscuits and cakes from Kayanis.
From Goa, I love salted, roasted and plain cashewnuts from my village. The mangoes from my village are the best ever. They are as big as coconuts and orange in colour from within.
The water at my village comes from the streams, it is so pure. I feel it is something we have been blessed with. Whenever I come back from my village, I always carry four to five bottles along with me.
In seafood, I like prawns, pomfret, bombil (Bombay duck), bangada and surmai (kingfish).
My (late) wife Aruna was a Chhatrapati Shivaji state award winner for kabaddi. She was the state captain and coach of the Mumbai University for kabaddi. She was an amazing cook and also a fabulous mother to my two kids. My wife and I shared 24 years of a fantastic married life. She would tell Nana (Patekar) that I have three, not two kids, and the naughtiest of them is your friend.
litre whole milk
1 tin Milkmaid
8 to 10 cardamoms (peeled and powdered)
10 to 12 almonds (finely sliced)
8 to 10 pistachios (finely sliced)
2 tsp charoli
15 to 20 strands saffron (soaked in cup warm milk)
Boil the milk in a heavy bottomed vessel. Give it a boil. Simmer. Boil the milk, stirring at regular intervals, till it reduces to three fourths.
Add milkmaid, along with powdered cardamoms, sliced almonds, pistachios, charoli and saffron. Stir continuously and cook on a low flame for about 8 to 10 minutes. Do not let it become very thick. Refrigerate and serve.