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A cookout that experimented with beer

Here was an evening that set out to debunk the myth that beer is just a mode of unwinding after a long day at work.

Unlike wine, which is used liberally in a range of cooking, beer is seldom seen in the same light.Even beer aficionados feel that mixing beer and food in a single preparation may have disastrous consequences.

The Food Lover's Club and Carlsberg presented the Carlsberg Cookout at the Caperberry restaurant in the city recently to take beer into the kitchen and the saucepans.

Before the event started, we were treated to lemon and lime shandy, with three teaspoons of lime juice and a glass of Carlsberg beer. The preparation was served cold and was excellent, with the lime lending a very light flavour and enhancing its taste a great deal.

As Chef Abhijit Saha took charge, the audience watched as he described how beer can be used to add taste and flavouring to many a preparation. Abhijit went on to whip up a warm potato salad with beer dressing, using liberal amounts of the beer. He also managed to craft a preparation — Carlsberg beer-poached fish in sauce. Abhijit taught the rapt audience the best way to prepare fish stock, a key to the preparation of good poached fish. Of course, this would be incomplete without generous helpings of beer. The beauty of both these preparations lay in the fact that they managed to retain their original flavours a great deal and also helped to bring out the light beer-induced flavour.

After the rather serious cooking demo, the floor was thrown open to the some select members of the audience to try their hand at creating delicacies, with beer as a vital ingredient.

The event soon metamorphosed into a free for all, as the audience crowded the stage and threw out free advice, with everyone turning out to be expert cooks in their own little way.

NIKHIL VARMA

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