Patience in the kitchen
What did you have for dinner last night?
Chicken curry, gobi masala, matar pulao, dal and home-made fresh litchi kulfi at home.
What are you reading now?
I mostly read articles on the net. I read about food, culinary trends, happenings and developments in the world. Also articles on human behaviour. I have subscribed for daily updates from quite a few websites: Epicurious, The History Kitchen and 101cookbooksto name a few.
Good food is the best route to happiness
Do you have a favourite recipe book?
Seasons by Donna Hay, it has simple but interesting and flavourful recipes, such as baked salmon with radish and cucumber salad. Then there’s balsamic pork belly with caramelized figs. Not to mention the simple, but tasty, asparagus and goat’s cheese bruschetta
Plans for your next vacation?
If in India, then Coorg. I want to try some of their fantastic pork dishes and bamboo shoot curry. If I’m going overseas, then I plan to head to Provence and try some French classics. My plans include coq au vin, blanquette de veau, pot au feu, and tarte tatin.
The most memorable meal you have eaten?
Stuffed kulcha and dal from a food cart in Amritsar.
What about the worst?
Dinner at a friend’s place. Since I am a chef, he and his wife decided to prepare something fancy, exotic and very complicated. Unfortunately, they messed it up. The menu was vegetable biriyani, paneer makhni, garlic noodles, chilli chicken, vegetable au gratin and gulab jamun with ice cream! It was not balanced and neither the flavours nor the seasoning was right. From what I remember of that meal, I only liked the gulab jamun and ice cream since they were bought from a store. So, of course, nothing could have gone wrong with them!
Lessons learnt in the kitchen?
Good food is the best route to happiness. When you’re in the kitchen, being patient always helps.
Any secret junk food confessions?
Samosas. And jalebis.
Last meal on earth?
My mom’s food. Her unique cooking includes parathas made of rice flour, then stuffed with stone ground poppy seeds, garlic and chilli. It’s topped with a dollop of butter, then served with roasted and pounded spice potato curry. And always, I end with kheer for dessert.
(Alok Anand is Executive Chef at Taj Coromandel)