Kitchen trends of 2018

NEW FLAVOURS, NEW TASTES: City chefs have curated eclectic menus for the upcoming year

NEW FLAVOURS, NEW TASTES: City chefs have curated eclectic menus for the upcoming year   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

From Keto pizzas, cauliflower rice and mascarpone cakes to sushi platters, Madurai’s well known chefs are gearing up with innovative menus for the upcoming year. Here's what you may get on your plate in the new year

This is the time when the larders get replenished, old ingredients are topped up and new ones added, when chefs work hard on creating something exciting and innovative. If you are a foodie, here's a low-down on things likely to trend in the city's food scene.

January is the time for resolutions and topping the list is ‘weight loss diets’. The gyms are fully booked and keto and paleo diets have caught on big time among fitness freaks. Keeping in line, Vichitra Rajasingh of Puppy's Bakery has curated a keto-friendly menu that's tasty and healthy as well. “Our menu for 2018 is a whole new combination of healthy options. Mission keto is difficult for hardcore rice and roti eaters and we want to make our new menu desirable,” she says.

So get ready to welcome with a smile the keto pizza on your plate in the coming year. Keto pizza is devoid of maida. The crust is made by mixing grated and steamed cauliflower granules, low-carb flax seed flour, egg and cheese. “The idea is to offer the experience of a pizza indulgence minus the guilt,” says Chef Manimaran at Puppy’s Bakery. “We wanted to take Keto and paleo diets beyond just grilled meat, nuts and boiled vegetables. So, we designed an edgy menu that's palatable and makes the diet easier to follow.”

One can eat the Keto pizza daily, vouches the chef, because he believes, happy eating alone makes for a sustained effort. “The carb content is hardly five grams and easily fits into the keto requirement of 20 grams per day.” “My key ingredient will be cauliflower this year,” declares Manimaran. “It's a simple and easily available vegetable with the lowest carbohydrate content. I am also planning cauliflower rice (finely grated to resembled and feel like rice), stir-fried with vegetables and served with chicken breast stuffed with spinach and mushroom.”

Manimaran is also introducing a keto lasagne, in which sliced egg plant will be layered instead of pasta sheets. There will also be more of Keto rolls and wraps to do justice to your weight watching mission!

Chef Philip Abraham of Phil's Bistro is all excited about launching a vegan menu in the new year. “It's challenging to offer an entirely vegan platter, as mine is primarily an Italian restaurant. Italian cuisine is rich in cheese and other dairy products. But for vegans, I plan to substitute cheese with cashew paste,” says Abraham. The eclectic menu this New Year at Phil's Bistro features avant garde experimental recipes such as braised turkey and mocha mascarpone mud cake apart from standards like the herb rice and honey mustard chicken.

“Braised turkey is becoming a trend as braising enables the fat to melt out and it is a healthier version than the traditional roasted turkey,” assures Abraham. “The eating pattern and preferences of Madurai people have changed a lot in the last five years. They are more open to experiments now, as a lot of them travel. Earlier, anything spicy would sell but now people have begun to appreciate bland and rich taste.”

Kitchen trends of 2018

The flavoursome mocha mascarpone mud cake is a sophisticated dessert and will be a star item in the menu this year, says Abraham. “It's a recipe close to my heart. It has a rich flavour of chocolate with a subtle hint of coffee. It comes with a delicate mascarpone cream cheese frosting that's something truly Italian,” he says, adding, “Masacarpone cheese for long has been my muse ingredient. I wish to work with more root vegetables and freshly made pastas this year.”

Kitchen trends of 2018

Sanjay Singh, the Executive Chef at The Gateway Hotel, Pasumalai is all set to introduce Sushi to Madurai this New Year. “Sushi is not just a dish/ recipe but a cuisine in itself. It's a highly traditional method of cooking yet offers ample scope for experimentation and that's what I like about Sushi,” says Singh, who plans to offer wholesome Sushi platters with a myriad of toppings and ingredients.

Though Sushi is offered in various avatars and is traditionally had with a range of condiments, Singh plans to launch varieties of Sushi flavoured with soy sauce, wasabi and garnished with seafood. “Salmon Nigiri is my personal favourite,” he quips. “It is difficult to find the ingredients in Madurai and I have to source them from Coimbatore. But I wish to make Sushi a regular in the menu.”

Another dream ingredient of Singh is Mexican tacos. “I have lots of ideas to surprise the Madurai crowd and will do it gradually. Guests can look forward to Mexican, Japanese, Modern European and Middle Eastern cuisine in the coming year,” he promises.

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Printable version | May 28, 2020 12:59:59 AM |

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