Mastanamma: YouTube chef granny dies at 107

Last Updated: Thu, Dec 06, 2018 15:30 hrs

Guntur: YouTube sensation and grandma chef Karre Mastanamma, who is one of the oldest Youtubers in the world passed away on Monday night.

The 107-year old, with a huge fan base following, shared cooking recipes, which consisted of local and unusual dishes made from the scratch. Her fans were worried assuming that the Youtube star was unwell as her Youtube channel had not been active over the past six months.

Her YouTube channel, named Country Foods, having more than a million views, with hundreds of cooking videos, including one on her grand old cuisine watermelon chicken that went viral.

The channel, managed by her grandson and his friend, launched in 2016 and became an instant hit.

Born in the state of Andhra Pradesh, Mastanamma told BBC Monitoring she believed she was 106 years old in 2017 - although she had no birth certificate to prove it. She lost her husband when she was just 22 years old. Mastanamma was married at the age of 11 and had five children, only one of whom is alive today. She raised all her children on her own after her husband died when she was 22.

In the videos, she would often sit in an open field in a remote village with minimal cooking equipment and cutlery.

She would use her nails to peel vegetables, and an old Indian-style knife to chop them. Food was served on a traditional southern Indian banana leaf.

BBC Marathi's Onkar Karambalekar, who met Mastanamma in 2016, says her style of cooking differed greatly from what is generally found on YouTube.

He said she would burn the wood herself, instead of using a cooking stove, and liked cooking fish because she could source it fresh from a nearby river.

"Her completely unique take on traditional Indian cooking was what made her a star," he adds.

Since then, many fans have taken to social media to praise her recipes and mourn her death.

On social media, she was dubbed the grandmother with a toothless smile and best known for making the combination of watermelon and chicken which went viral.

Her rich eggplant curry and spicy catla fish curry are among her most famous dishes.