Discovering India through food, says chef Ratnani

Chandigarh, Aug 29 (IANS) Celebrated masterchef Vicky Ratnani on Thursday said he is discovering India through food.

"I am discovering my country from food," Ratnani told the media here.

About his foray into the food industry, he said as a child, he learnt cooking from his family, his mom and his friends, all great cooks.

Currently, the celebrated chief, who is born and raised in Mumbai, is doing the 'Mother India project'.

"My mom is a vegetarian. Also we Sindhis have a lot of vegetarian food on their plate. I am documenting all her recipes minutely and this is a Mother India project," Ratnani told IANS.

Ratnani, who graduated from Dadar Catering College (Institute of Hotel Management, Mumbai) and then travelled across the globe for 14 years before returning to India, believes his specialty is Western but his soul is 'desi'.

As a chef, he said, "I believe I supporting local farmers believe in sustainability."

Ratnani, who believes he is exactly the same person at home or with his friends, visited the local wholesale fruit and vegetable market in Sector 26 to explore all the local seasonal ingredients.

Whenever he is in Delhi, he prefers to visit Khari Baoli, Asia's largest wholesale spice market selling all kinds of spices, nuts, herbs and food products.

According to him, healthy food becoming the preferred choice.

"The health element is pretty high among consumers these days. They are not only calorie conscious but also conscious about what they are eating, I mean quality of food," he said.

For his first ever gig in the region, Ratnani is all set to curate an exotic 'Global Gourmet Menu' for 35 BREWHOUSE at JW Marriott here.

"I get very excited when I get to collaborate with people who share my love for food, exploration and innovation," Ratnani said.

As global flavours meet the produce of the local markets in the backdrop, Ratnani takes centre stage as he dons his chef's hat to create the magic of flavours.

"Each bite of your food will be a dash of new flavour combinations. Take the crispy fish tacos, for instance, a Mexican delicacy that will be topped with an Indianised sauce combining the fresh flavours of beetroot, cucumber and yogurt. Yet another amazing flavour pairing is of exotic vegetables and Rajasthani mathania chillies which we will be serving in the plant-based calzone," he added.

--IANS

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