Even as food technology has changed over the years, traditional food is still most favoured for its use of herbs and spices.
Arun Sundararaj, Executive Chef, The Taj Mahal Hotel, New Delhi spoke about his favourite cuisine during an informal chat. Starting his career with Taj Mahal Palace Mumbai as a trainee, he rose to the position of executive chef at Taj Mahal Hotel Delhi.
While he has travelled far and wide, experiencing culinary worldwide and experimenting with new food technology, he strongly believes there is no comparison to Indian traditional cuisine. He feels the use of herbs and spices makes Indian tradional food truly fabulous and lipsmacking. It is the aroma that stands out, if one were to compare with global cuisine.
He strictly feels even during new experiments, one should not forget the essence of the dish. Talking about Achari Fish Tikka, one of his favourites, he recommends following authentic recipe where one should:
Wash and clean the fish and marinate it with ginger-garlic paste, turmeric pickle paste, yellow chilli, mustard oil and salt and rest for four hours.
Put warm mustard oil, turmeric powder, yellow chilli, powder, salt, chaat masala, lemon juice, kasoori methi and hung yoghurt to the spice mix.
Then add marinated fish and coat it and allow it to rest for 2 hours. On a thick skewer, gently put the fish tikkas and cook in moderate tandoor for 12 minutes by just turning once.
Let’s take a sneak peak at this mastermind’s views:
Born into a family of doctors, becoming a chef was not the most conventional choice for me. However, as a child, I was lucky to have the opportunity to travel extensively and the exposure to different cuisines intrigued me. That was the beginning of my journey. I joined the Taj Mahal Palace, Mumbai as a trainee chef almost 23 years ago and I have never looked back.
From molecular gastronomy to reinventing cuisines, food has changed enormously. Innovation in cuisine has no boundaries much like an artist who works on his imagination with no restrictions. Chefs today have started to incorporate more and more of these techniques in their ways of cooking.
More and more restaurants have started experimenting with gastronomy ingredients and are curating food the way minute details need to be covered when one resorts to a scientific way of cooking food.
The only key to remember is not to lose the essence of your dish in the process of innovation or experimentation.
Some of the key trends in the food technology are developing innovative indigenous food processing technologies, risk assessment of both biological & non-biological hazards in food, food allergies and intolerances, food and risk assessment and new developments in food engineering packaging technologies.
India & The world
The traditional food of India has been widely appreciated for its fabulous use of herbs and spices. Indian cuisine is known for its large assortment of dishes.
The cooking style varies from region to region and is largely divided into South Indian & North Indian cuisine. India is quite famous for its diverse multi cuisine.
The remarkable diversity and variety of foods it encompasses isn’t unlike the country itself—and that’s what makes it in many ways so appealing. India basically is home to a wealth of food diversity, delicacies, and innovations.
Trend among foodies
In today’s day and age, guests are open to trying out new things and therefore more open to experimenting and trying different kinds of cuisines.
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