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Indian Cuisine touted as the ‘Big Trend’ of 2017: Spicing Up San Francisco with Indian Cuisine

Whether you're craving for home-style recipes or inventive modern twists, San Francisco's Indian restaurants have lots to offer.

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Indian dishes and their unique spices
Indian spices and flavors. Wikimedia
  • Indian cuisine is touted as the ‘big trend’ of 2017
  • Authentic Indian flavors with contemporary cooking styles and presentation are hitting all the right spots with the West

San Francisco, August 15, 2017: Exotic cocktails made with Indian spices and elixirs. And dishes that have such diverse, unique and bold flavors that the staff actually has to guide diners, particularly in situations where many might not be familiar with the authentic dishes made and served with a contemporary style. A modern dining experience overlooked by industry veterans from India. And an ambitious menu in equally ambitious restaurants- Indian dining chains are currently having a wild moment in San Francisco.

Indian food accounts for less than two percent of the ethnic food market in the United States, but it still has the fastest growing rate. Courtesy, its aromatic, flavorful and un-parallel combination of food.

Indian cuisine, which remained largely ignored for decades is now being touted as the ‘next-big-thing’ with studies pointing that Indian food is potentially going to be one of the biggest trends throughout 2017.

An increasing number of Americans on Quora have shared that quality Indian food requires fine culinary skills, which makes it an expensive affair for an average American. But despite this, Indian food remains an unshakable indulgence and has finally engaged mainstream tastes.

People of non-Indian backgrounds are popularly indulging in Indian food.
Indian food is hitting all the right spots with the Western palates. Quora

In an article published in 2012 for Wall Street Journal, “Is Indian Cuisine Coming of Age in America?” the author Visi R. Tilak explored the reason why Indian food was becoming increasingly popular in the West. According to him, it was because of the expanding American palate, which was only becoming bolder.

Indian food’s fast growing popularity can be attributed to the cuisine’s unique flavors that are hard to replicate. After all, there are not many other cultures that use the same combination of herbs and spices that can be found in a typical Indian dish.

And at the hub of this entire extravaganza is the city of San Francisco!

From upscale joints, to major food chains and small cafes- they are all dwelling in authentic Indian dishes, but with a contemporary twist!

ALSO READ Indulge in Gluttony: 14 Surprising Facts that you never knew about Indian Food!

Whether you’re craving for home-style recipes or inventive modern twists, San Francisco’s Indian restaurants have lots to offer. With veterans from the industry in India overlooking everything that goes out, their chefs have trained in the North and South and all other parts of India, at Michelin-starred restaurants, at tiny local cafes and big industry names and of course, their grandmother’s kitchens.

Irrespective of the style you prefer, Indian food is having a bit of a renaissance in San Francisco.

“We deep dived into Bengali recipes recently that my grandmother had passed down via my mother. This to me is far more interesting than fine-dining meals over multiple courses”, said Anjan Mitra of Dosa.

Regional Indian cuisines comprise an early trend that is yet to establish deep ground, which is why ventures like Dosa attract an ever-expanding crowd. And the fact that South Indian cuisine remained largely unexplored till a few years back works well to their advantage!

Anjan believes the underlying strength of Indian food is to expose foreign cultures to the wonderful diversity of the Indian culinary landscape.

Dosa has established a niche by serving Indian food made with high quality ingredients. With dishes like Quinoa Uthappam and paler cauliflower rice, their impressive menu caters to gluten-free, nut-free and other dietary requirements. Anjan believes in the simple philosophy that delicious and healthy food finds an audience.

Dosa ia a South Indian restaurant venture by Anjan Mitra
Dosa has established a niche space among the SF city diners. Quora

Of late, Anjan Mitra and his team have planned a trip for 20 San Franciscans to dwell in the regional Indian cuisine. Calling it The Great South India Food Journey, the 10 day trip will commence from November 25 and will cover Mumbai, Kochi, Periyar and Kumarakom. “There are plans to get the traveler exposed to local restaurants, but also to home cooking. Liam Mayclem (the Emmy Award winning radio and TV star) who I have known via the food scene in SF for many years will join us,” he said, as reported by the Hindu.

With popular names like Aslam’s Rasoi, Roti Indian Bistro, Babu Ji and Udupi Palace among many others, the city offers a multitude of graciously-spiced, slow simmered deliciousness spanning across the extreme corners of the city of hills.

Chef Sujan Sarkar, of Rooh, continues to charm the vibrant palate of San Franciscans with his progressive style of Indian cuisine, using a wide variety of local produce to his advantage. Upon being asked what’s next, he added “Possible rabbit. And I want to use Bamboo rice which is healthy, with no starch. Black garlic is trending. I enjoy using it and activated charcoal in my experiments.”

The chef, familiar to many for his leading role in Delhi’s Olive Bar and Kitchen, offers a new interpretation of Indian Cuisine using ingredients one would not imagine, like ramps that are smaller in size than scallions and have a mild onion flavor.

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Chef Sujan has previously worked magic in London (where Madonna dined thrice at his former restaurant, Almada), India and now San Francisco, is trained in modern European and French cuisine, the techniques for which hold strong in his culinary expression. His dishes “enjoy fresh ingredients and creativity on the plate. Rooh celebrates the innovative spirit of modern India”, he told the Hindu.

 


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“Regionality is What Sets Indian Food Apart” from the Cuisines Across the World, says MasterChef Australia Judge Gary Mehigan

Gary Mehigan carries back inspiration from India to his kitchen from his each visit

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MasterChef Australia Judge Gary Mehigan
MasterChef Australia Judge Gary Mehigan. Twitter
  • Gary Mehigan said that Indian food is gaining deserved attention globally
  • We have many Indian chefs like Manish Mehrotra, Sanjeev Kapoor
  • The Chef expressed that food the world over has seen enormous changes driven by social media

August 27, 2017: Globally renowned English-Australian chef, television show host and restaurateur Gary Mehigan says he believes that “regionality is what sets Indian food apart” from the cuisines across the world.

In an email interview with IANS from Melbourne, Mehigan said that Indian food is gaining deserved attention globally. “We’re close to seeing India explore its intellectual property, namely food, properly. We have many Indian chefs like Manish Mehrotra, Sanjeev Kapoor and many other names from all over the world infiltrating the food scene in a big way.”

 “People still sometimes see Indian food as a homogeneous chicken tikka, rogan josh, chicken vindaloo cuisine, when we know it is far from the truth. Regionality is what sets Indian food apart. Regionality is what the world is going to appreciate when it starts to learn about Indian food,” Mehigan explained.

“I hope I’m a part of those who bring great Indian food to Australia,” said the chef, who is now the face of Fox Life’s “Food @ 9: India Special with Gary Mehigan”.

“There’s quite a bit of Australian talent we’re trying to showcase through the series. These shows get addictive and help us travel vicariously through our television sets,” he stated.

ALSO READ: Indulge in Gluttony: 14 Surprising Facts that you never knew about Indian Food!

Mehigan, who will be setting foot in India for the seventh time this November, said he carries back inspiration from the country to his kitchen from each visit.

“I love the country – something about the color, the chaos, the diversity and the originality of the food, it all gets under your skin. I carry home a few recipes and ideas each time I visit. It’s certainly changed the way I cook at home,” he said.

Known popularly for shows like “Far Flung with Gary Mehigan”, and for his presence as a judge on “MasterChef Australia”, the Chef expressed that food the world over has seen enormous changes driven by social media.

“I’m loving where food is at the moment. Ideas are being shared so quickly through social media — whether it’s Instagram, Twitter or Facebook. I can browse through my Instagram and look at what some of my most favorite restaurants in the world are serving for lunch.

“The frame of reference for younger cooks is much bigger. They are able to browse through how a matcha ice-cream is made in Tokyo, or how funky desserts are made in Parisian cafes,” Mehigan said.

All in all, it’s a great thing for food with awareness growing, he opined. “This global club of foodies is only expanding. It’s a great thing for food, our health, and our planet too if we care about where our food comes from.”

Social media is also one of his ways to keep reinventing his food, said the chef, who has been in the industry for nearly three decades.

“Social media is there to keep my imagination going. I’m food obsessed. I go on holidays because of food. I think I’ve never been in love with food more than I am now,” Mehigan said, signing off. (IANS)

 

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Here are 5 Indian Dishes that are Popular Across the Globe!

The five Indian dishes that even foreigners swear by

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Indian dishes and their unique spices
Indian spices and flavors. Wikimedia

New Delhi, July 25th, 2017: Reflecting the divergence of cultures; a perfect blend of zillion spices, creating in one’s taste bud, a blast of various flavors; leaving you wanting for more, that’s Indian cuisine for you!

With a country as diverse as ours, it is very much expected of India to maintain this diversity, when it comes to food as well. India doesn’t disappoint, as it contributes to the world, some of the best of food. Indian dishes have had, not just Indians, but the people around the world craving. According to a survey conducted by CNN Travel, recently, India has secured a place among the top 50 cuisines of the world. Here are five Indian dishes that are enjoying the global reputation.

Here are five Indian dishes that are enjoying the global reputation-

BIRYANI

Biryani enjoys global reputation
Biryani. Pixabay

Once you taste the Hyderabadi Biryani, there’s no going back. It is a dish made of rice, meat and is loved by people, India and abroad.

SAMOSA

Indian cuisine enjoying global reputation
Samosa. Pixabay

No one says no to Samosas, EVER! This is a fried snack stuffed with potatoes, and tastes best in combination with pudina (mint) chutney and chai! 

DHOKLA

Indian dishes enjoying global reputation
Dhokla. Pixabay

This soft and spongy snack is a delicious dish coming from the Indian state, Gujarat. It is made of fermented rice and chickpea batter and is perfect to begin your day with if you’re someone who likes their breakfast light yet tasty.

CHOLE BHATURE

Indian dishes enjoying global reputation
Chole bhature. Wikimedia

Chole bhature or the most popular dish in north India includes fried flour bread and curried chickpea. It can be eaten and enjoyed anytime of the day, as breakfast, lunch or dinner. Chole bhature when it rains, is hands down, the best idea.

DOSA

Indian food enjoys global reputation
Dosa. Wikimedia Commons

Because who doesn’t love Dosa? This is a dish that South Indians, North Indians, Non- Indians, everybody swears by. It is a South Indian dish made of rice batter and served with Sambhar and Coconut Chutney. 

These are the five Indian dishes that not only Indians but foreigners drool over as well.

-prepared by Samiksha Goel of NewsGram. Twitter @goel_samiksha

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10 Cooking Hacks and Tricks to remember while Cooking Indian Dishes

From the tandoori to South Indian food; these hacks are all you need to excel in cooking all those perfect Indian dishes in no time

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An Indian Cuisine, Wikimedia

April 19, 2017: The global culinary world is being taken over by Indian cuisine. In America and Europe, more and more Indian restaurants and Indian food outlets are opening up, food lovers all across the globe are falling in love with the taste of authentic Indian curries and flatbreads. This is probably because of the heavy use of nutritious vegetables and meats cooked in varied spices that bring out an array of beautiful flavours. But as delicious as Indian food is, cooking perfect Indian food is no piece of cake! Here are a few general tips and tricks for you if you love cooking Indian dishes at home:

1. For making fluffy, soft Chapatis

Chapatis or wheat flat cakes go with all curries and gravies, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian and can be eaten for both lunch and dinner. To make dough for softer chapatis, add a little warm water and then some warm milk and knead the dough. Let it rest for 15 minutes before rolling it out for the chapatis. To make round chapatis, keep rotating the rolled out dough while rolling it with a rolling pin. This ensures that the rolled out dough gets an even thickness all over and the shape becomes round. But if that’s one of your pet peeves, then just place a small, clean and round stainless steel plate on top of the rolled out dough and just cut out the sides that are exposed to get a perfect round shape.

2. For making Kheer

Kheer is a milk rice pudding made in a variety of ways across India. Preparing kheer is a tedious and time consuming task. A lot of times the pudding tends to thicken too much and sticks to the vessel. Just add a little water to the vessel, before putting the milk in to avoid that fro happening. While preparing kheer, use the deepest most heavy bottomed vessel you have to make sure that it doesn’t boil over and fall out of the vessel.

3. For making dal

To make the dal more flavorful, before cooking, roast the lentils. The same goes for rava. The excess dal water can be used for making rasam, to be eaten with appams and idlis. You can even add the water to chapati dough to make it flavorful. You can also use the leftover dal to make delicious dal parathas.

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4. For fried foods

Fried foods like pooris, bhaturas, potato patties and vadas are popular everywhere across the country. When cooking pakoras or vegetable fritters, add some warm oil and half a tablespoon baking soda in the batter. While making potato tikkis or patties, make sure to boil the potatoes well. The mashed potato mix can be refrigerated for some time, before frying the tikkis. This ensures that the patties are not gooey. To make the pooris more crispy add a little rice flour to the wheat flour, while kneading the dough for the pooris. To make sure that your subzi is flavorful, heat the oil properly, before adding vegetables and seasonings.

5. For making gravies and curries

Curries are a signature preparation of Indian cuisine. For a tomato based gravy, always use only ripe red tomatoes, so as to retain the bright red color of the fruit. Discard the green parts before pureeing the tomatoes. To ensure that the flavor is enhanced, always fry the masla on a reduced flame. The quality of spices and condiments can make or break gravies. Make sure that you have all the adequate spices, that they are from a well known brand and make sure you know them well.

6. For cooking meats

When cooking meats for mutton curry or in biryani, make sure to slow cook it under reduced flame to seal the flavor and the juices in and then increase the heat. Cook it till it’s tender. If you have to store fish for over a day, rub it with salt, turmeric and just a dash of vinegar and then freeze it, to ensure that it stays fresh. Frozen meats are partially easier to cut and slice. But make sure you allow the meat to stand for some time before cooking. This ensures that the meat cooks faster.

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7. For cooking rice

Before cooking add a little bit of oil to the rice to prevent the rice from getting sticky. A few drops of lemon can also do the trick and the grains separate beautifully when cooked. You can always use the leftover rice for the meals next day. All you have to do is add a little bit of stir fried vegetables with some spices and fried onions, and you can make yourself a plate of delicious pulav.

8. For South Indian food

Idlis and Dosas are the most popular South Indian foods, and are enjoyed with spicy cooked lentil curry or sambhar and coconut chutney. For making softer idlis, add a little sago or sabudana or cooked rice while making the batter. A lot of coconut is used in South Indian food dishes, so store a good amount of grated coconut in the refrigerator, if you have to cook a lot of this particular cuisine. Make sure to use good quality sambhar powder for making the delicious curry. Stock up on common condiments used in South Indian foods, like curry leaves and asfoetida or heeng. Also ensure that the asfoetida is good in quality and potent.

9. For cooking with tandoor oven

The tandoor might be an archaic oven now, but it’s still very popular in North Indian villages, particularly in Punjab. The tandoori roti is an indispensable part of the Punjabi cuisine. The key to cooking with tandoor is marinating the breads or meats well. Add a little gram flour or besan to the marinade, before dipping your cottage cheese, vegetables or meats that you want to grill on the tandoor. The flour makes the marinade bind to the meat, making it more flavorful.

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10. For using leftovers

The best leftover fix is to use the mashed potatoes you used to make potato parathas or tikkis the night before, in making a vegetable toast for breakfast the next morning. You can also mix the brown discard left after making ghee at home, for making soft parathas by mixing it in the dough.

So get your ingredients ready and start cooking.

– prepared by Durba Mandal of NewsGram. Twitter: @dubumerang