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Updated: February 3, 2013 19:52 IST

Cooks up a surprise

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Christine Manfield
Christine Manfield

Christine Manfield loves to keep her signature menu authentic

After winding up her introduction of Australia cuisine to the guests in the on-going Oz Fest in Hyderabad, Christine Manfield will be off to Kerala. She will not be holidaying there but taking a group of holidayers from Australia to introduce the pristine beauty of Kerala and its cuisine. Besides being a chef and a culinary ambassador to Australian cuisine, Christine is also a food writer, a manufacturer, a presenter and a teacher — all the hats she wears is because of the passion and she adds, “I have to fight hard to find time to cook.”

Christine owns a restaurant called Universal in Australia and offers a a la carte menu of tastes inspired by flavours of the world, a result of Christine’s extensive global travel. Her food has distinctive and definitive flavour combinations that are not limited by traditional boundaries.

‘The idea behind the menu is to broaden the parameters of the dining experience and appreciate the natural symmetry between food and wine.’

For the Oz Fest, Christine presents dishes from her signature menu which she says are dishes designed by her. Christine as a chef doesn’t like recreating dishes and instead loves designing a dish with the same ingredients.

When asked what describes her cuisine best, she says, “it is a series of taste explosions. There’s an element of surprise and mystery with each bite.” For the fest too, Christine says she will be doing the same and create a menu which will be a reflection of the wider universal flavour.”

After having travelled and opened restaurants in different parts of UK, Christine has also authored several award-winning books and in her sixth book, Tasting India, the author and chef traces the food, spice and culture of the country.

Talking of Hyderabadi food, Christine says she prefers the refinement of the Deccan dum style of cooking. “It is unique in its presentation and use of ingredients,” she adds.

Being a traveller, does she feel food on the highways in non-descript eateries are more authentic than those served in restaurants?

She laughs, “Yes, it is. It is true for every country and region. The food cooked by locals are more authentic than those served in plush eateries.”

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