Are We Nationalizing Indian Cuisine?

Indian diaspora has presented its cuisine to a wide range of masses around the world. Every individual in the world has either tasted or even heard of one of the Indian dishes. Indian immigrants have always presented their tradition on the table in the form of flavorful dishes but mostly our diverse cuisine is generally classified into North Indian food. Typically „BUTTER CHICKEN‟ OR „CHICKEN TIKKA MASALA‟ Indian food has a lot of variety just like its culture and tradition.

The language spoken in India changes every few kilometers or you‟ll discover different

dialects. Indian food has an immense variety to offer the world, but it still has not been

explored to that level. We are still stuck with the „extremely spicy, tangy curries.

„Biryani and Naans.‟

Ignorance when it comes to regional cuisines of India:

Even restaurants around the world showcase their culinary skills onto north Indian

cuisine. It‟s not only happens around the world where other masses know so little

about Indian food but also within the country itself. The ignorance when it

comes to the regional cuisines of India grows from inside the country. As an Indian,

we need to learn about our own cultures and varied culinary roots before blaming the

rest of the word for not knowing Dosa and Uttapam.

A Gujarati might not understand the staple dish of Assam. Someone from north Indian

might not tell apart the difference between Malayali or Telangana snacks. It‟s only

because a lot of communities have not been cross exposed in the last few decades, but

now it‟s happening very rapidly. We can say in the last five years, Indian culinary

colleges and restaurants have opened to a diversified menu and a lot more have been

explored and spoken about regional Indian food.

A restaurant on the mission to introduce the depth of Indian cuisine:

Similarly, a restaurant “Café Lota” in New Delhi which doing the true representation

of Indian food, this contemporary restaurant in the middle of the National Crafts

Museum in New Delhi offers a contemporary take on regional foods, cuisines of

Bihar, Odisha, Rajasthan, basically ranging from Kashmir to south India, Assam to

Gujarat. Their menu highlights the complexity and the depth of Indian cuisine and

beautifully fits in with the theme of its surroundings. The head chef, Udit Maheshwari

didn't take his mission lightly to introduce his customers to regional Indian cuisine,

also encompassing dishes both popular as well as obscure around the country.

They have a plethora of options for both vegetarians and non-vegetarians. They offer

Kasundi prawn curry and also Kathal (jack fruit) biryani.

They have Kerala vegetable stew, which they prepare in coconut milk. There‟s Cafe

Lota‟s special Paneer Pasanda; is cottage cheese discs stuffed with spinach and

cheddar cheese, cooked in the tandoor served in a rich tomato, dried milk, and cashew

nut gravy. They serve Besan Gatte with Karari bhindi and Khobi roti.

The National handicraft finding a new life

This place gave a new life to the national art museum over the last few years; since the

cafe opened in October 2013. The national handicrafts and handlooms museum

established in 1956 through the efforts of social reformer Kamaladevi Chattopadhyay.

Café Lota has played a major role in driving new traffic to this disregarded city‟s

masterpiece, bringing back Delhiites who haven't visited since their school trip years

before. Since 2014 Art museum has received 30,633. Regular customers may not want

to visit the museum, but families who come there to spend time with their children in

the galleries while they wait for the table.

Representing the diversified cuisine of India

Over the course of time, many restaurants have finally overlooked the typically

uniform and nationalized cuisine, new places are serving specifically regional Indian

food; cuisines that are heavily influenced by Indian history, cultural practices,

understanding that India is highly regionally specific that only our overarching theme

unites our different culinary practices.

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