Why would someone smart work with molecules in the kitchen and not in a laboratory?

Food, which is basic to human existence, has also become one of the booming industries in the country and around the world. Since the young Indians were now exploring, they are developing a pan-Indian flavor, becoming aware of the dishes of other cultures and regions, of street food that was previously limited only to that part of the country, said Pushpesh Pant, former JNU professor and gastronomic critic.

Pant chatted with journalist and author Vir Sanghvi about Kolkata's appointment with taste in the Times Litfest Kolkata in Swabhumi on Sunday.

Recalling his various dining experiences, Pant recalled that it was one of his barbers who told him about petai parota and ghugni, essentially a street food from Kolkata, which was never completely gentrified. Now, curious minds and taste buds were discovering these dishes that belonged to different social strata, said Pant.

In addition, the homemade Kerala dishes with Ladkahi yak milk cheese were becoming familiar to everyone.

When Sanghvi asked about the punjabification of food, Pant pointed out that the trend had made us forget about all the other daals, except the daali kaali and the yellow daal. “Yellow daal is everything. People have forgotten that we have mung daal of different types and chholar daal, which can also be called yellow daal. ”

When Sanghvi asked about the chicken with butter, supposedly the most popular Punjabi dish, Pant laughed as one of the biggest drawbacks, along with paneer. He noted that Bukhara daal and chicken butter, the characteristic dishes of Moti Mahal, were actually created by necessity. Tomato puree and butter were added to the leftovers and ready, your favorite dish was ready. You drag someone and you have what you want, joked Pant. And according to him, the tomato was like the drug pushed out of the schools. When added to the chicken with butter, it gives the eaters, especially the children, something sweet and tasty that they can enjoy. It also saved cooks a lot of trouble, since they could use mashed potatoes for multiple dishes, from paneer to chicken.

Sanghvi asked Pant that there was no change in the trend. The children were moving towards pasta and pizza, but paneer and tomato sauce still dominated the chicken coop even there, said Pant, joking about his dislike for paneer. But he quickly added that people might not know what the original Chinese food really tastes like, they were not afraid to try new things and meat anyway.

Sanghvi wondered if the popularity of junk food was leading India to an obesity scene similar to that of the United States. But Pant noted that Indian food had always been based on carbohydrates. “We have maida is varied food. But Luchi is sublime and doesn't count, he laughed.

Sanghvi, who had spent considerable years in Kolkata, could not understand why anyone would go to McDonalds to eat an aloo tikki burger when there were perfect phuchkas along the way. Because we have told ourselves that they were not hygienic or aspirational, Pant joked.

Sanghvi also asked where Indian food was headed. Pant noted that chefs, many of them more famous and less chefs, pursued Michelin's mirage. Despite his admiration for some of the great chefs, he seemed worried because the home cooking was drying up, as people cooked less and less at home and restaurant dishes were discarded. In fact, Sanghvi said, people went to restaurants to look for food that used to be prepared at home, but no more, since families had stopped cooking.

Sanghvi also wondered why people struggled to replicate the recipes and foods that were shown on television, since they were all fake: the cream used is usually shaving cream. Pant responded quickly: The proof of a pudding is in eating.

When someone in the audience asked about molecular cooking, Pant said why someone smart would work with molecules in the kitchen and not in a laboratory. A more serious question about the shortage of healthy food that was tasty, said Pant, is like asking for a magic wand.

By: Haimanti Basu