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About this sample
Words: 2231 |
12 min read
Published: Feb 8, 2022
Words: 2231|Pages: 5|12 min read
Some authors describe culture as the values, symbols, interpretations, and viewpoints that differentiate one people from another in modernized societies. With the increase in tourism, international trade and the immigrations around the globe, the role of ethnicity has been increasing the importance of not only the consumer behavior and businesses but also the food industry and the food culture. The number of people who love eating the ethnic food has increased and as per the demands, the ethnic restaurants has become more mainstream.
On the individual level, we generally grow up eating the food of our own culture, and it contributes to a part of one’s life. Many of us connects the food with good childhood memories and families. Talking about a larger scale, food is a very important aspect of the food culture. The traditional food of a place comes by passing from one generation to the other. It also operates as an impression of the identity of a culture. Migrants get the food of their country or the flavours of their country wherever they go and cooking traditional food in a new land which preserves their culture.
However, preparing the food in a different country does not remains the same. For example, their might be some ingredients of a traditional food which might not be available in a different country or the ingredients might be lacking quality. As a result, the flavor of the dish and the taste might turn different. Keeping this in mind and taking it in a positive way, chefs have started to alter traditional dishes with new flavors, new ingredients, calling it as the new world cuisine. Talking about its origin, celebrity chef Norman Van Aken, the Florida-based chef credited with coining the term “fusion” cuisine.
The culture of fusion food or the new world cuisine, a combination of food elements of different cultures, begins right from our own households, our great grandmothers who cooked the English vegetables along with the spices of India. As witnessed, that the world is slowly beginning to bring in the Indian food, we see the rise of more local food brands, chefs who travel outskirts to find new brands and recipes, trying to adapt a new root so as to promote the unconquered and unexplored Indian food. Although the north Indian food been much hyped on a global level, people need to explore more of Indian food.
When chefs push the boundaries of the evolution of cuisine, fusion happens. With the world becoming a global village, access to ingredients drives “fusion.” For example, Norwegian Salmon was never accessible in India historically. But now that it is, we have seen the birth of Salmon Tikka. Chefs believe that with fusion, the regional recipe can go on a global level. Some of the leading and successful chefs such as chef Gagan Anand is doing great with the progressive Indian cuisine in Bangkok, chef Vineet Bhatia has been building the Indian Rasoi in London, chef Sanjeev Kapoor who has been storming the Punjabi food on a global level though his T.V. shows and restaurants and celebrity chef Vikas Khanna modernizing simple Indian food at his Junoon restaurant.
According to Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, creating a new taste is the single important focus of fusion cuisine. Chef Manjit Singh said that while Indian cuisine’s global acceptance is still at a budding stage, it will certainly be a hit in the next five years. “The good thing about the Indian cuisine is receiving global acceptance and Indian chefs being in demand. Hence, there is a need to master Indian cuisine to use as a base for fusion and make a mark for themselves in the culinary landscape.
Fusion food in India which initially included street food such as Sichuan paneer, chicken Manchurian has eventually began to make its space in the fine dining restaurants across the country. Chefs are fusing two different cuisines and trying to balance the flavors of two different cuisines and plating them in their own way. Talking about recent trends of fusion cuisine in India, chefs are experimenting with indo-Japanese, Indian-Chinese and Indian-Italian flavors.
Chefs at the Hyatt regency Pune came up with Thai curry flavored dosa which is a fusion of south Indian and Thai cuisine. Some more other fusion experiments includes indo-oriental fusion for example paneer tikka with a flavor of lemon grass, dim sums stuffed with gajar ka halwa, passion fruit rasgulla.
Chef Manish Mehrotra’s New Delhi based restaurant Indian accent is known for the fusion of the Indian cuisine. According to chef chicken manchurian is one the earliest examples of fusion food, while there is nothing known as chicken Manchurian in china. Even celebrity chef Tarla Dalal has also talked about several fusion foods such as paneer pizza which has been adapted by the Indian palate. But today, fusion food is taking new forms, where chefs apply logic to create a fusion of two cuisine. For example serving blue cheese naan in a restaurant. Here, the logic behind the fusion is that blue cheese and bread is a classic combination. It has just been given an Indian style, said chef Manish. He doesn’t use two cuisines for India for a fusion dish for example instead of serving pav bhaji with a lemon on top, he used kaffir lime to give a subtle hint of lemon and making it much more presentable. India is a land where the fusion food has been adapted well and not a trend which passes like any other. Fusion food in a fine dining restaurant is a positive development in the culinary world. Chef Dipin Katariya of the Mumbai based restaurant, Toast – bistro and bar, says that most of the most of the dishes in his restaurant has been successful because of the use of parallel ingredients of the Indian cuisine or those which are infused with the Indian flavors.
According to Bharat Malkani, president of the federation of hotels and restaurants association of India (FHRAI) the idea of fusion food is growing fast in India.
Indian food has come a long way from cross culinary mergers like Wasabi and tuna to fusion of Indian foods with a global twist. In the current scenario the chefs have started infusing the local flavors with a global twist. And, the culinary blends of culture are more famous these days than those of Chinese, Japanese, and Italian emergence, for example, a blend of Salmon cured with achari paste known as Achari Salmon Nigri. Similarly, Chef Sabyasachi Gorai has opened his restaurant which is Armenian cuisine based with Bengali influence all credit to Gorai’s roots in Asansol, West Bengal.
The Anglo Indian cuisine, a by-product of the British colonial effect in the region. On the other hand, the English too have taken the “chicken tikka” back to England and gone ahead and named it as their national dish. This fusion cuisine is complex in nature and is still evolving. The good thing about food and eating habits is that people want to celebrate it and one can’t stop its influence and spread on a culture. There are two different methods in which fusion food is followed in India: international dishes having Indian spices and Indian food with international sauces. Anglo Indian food being one of the first fusion foods of the world and represents an important part of the food history on a global level. This cuisine not only brings influences just from the British and Indian but also from the other points of contact in India such as Spanish, Dutch and Portuguese. The taste of the Anglo Indian food has always been more than simple Indian food which is a bit milder than expected. Also, the Anglo Indian dishes contains more meat as compared to the Indian cuisine and also contains ingredients which are high in sweetness level such as almonds, coconut, yogurt and milk.
Another great example is the Chinese food prepared in our country also known as the contemporary Chinese food. The first Indian-Chinese restaurant ‘Eau Chew’ opened in Kolkata. As we all know that the authentic Chinese food is bland is taste and contains less of flavors whereas the Chinese food which is prepared in India is spicy in nature and full of vegetables and sauces which aren’t known in the Chinese culture. The way the contemporary Chinese food is presented in India certainly doesn’t looks like authentic Chinese food but this indo-Chinese cuisine has gained a lot of popularity because the fusion of the ingredients perfectly matches the Indian palates which is the need for spicy and oily preparation which is one the main reasons for its popularity and further growth in India. But on the other hand with the coming of the health trends, the chefs who make this cuisine must start coming up with substitutes for oil which will give the same flavor with lesser calorie intake.
An example of fusion cuisine doing well outside of India can be the Tex-Mex cuisine which can be known as the Texas inspired Mexican food. The history of the Tex-Mex is very complex in nature and a lot more than some reinvented dish from across the Mexican border. Tex-Mex is the Texas version of Mexican food, but rather should be known as the regional food that has expanded over time in the neighboring states and even across the United States. In the current scenario, the Tex-Mex cuisine is the most prominent food in in the Dallas area.
It is equally interesting and essential to note that before Tex-Mex started to spread across the state of Texas, Native Americans existing in the state had an important effect on the food of the area, giving culinary influence of spices and techniques to well-known Tex-Mex dishes today.
According to chef Kapil Sahi fusion food is not supposed to pull off, especially when there is an attempt to balance the complexity and diversity of the Indian cuisine with the simplicity of the Japanese cuisine.
Without understanding ethnic food and it origins, including the societies, culture, and region from which it comes, it is tough to talk ethnicity. In a narrow sense, ethnic foods are defined as foods originating from a culture and heritage of an ethnic group who use their knowledge of local ingredients of plants and/or animal sources. For example, Hindu food from India, Maori food from New Zealand, and Masai food from Kenya are all considered ethnic foods.
People from many countries are keen to present their own ethnic food to people from around the globe. This usually starts with preparing the food and ends with eating it. Although each country’s food has its own story, including its history and its nutritional advantages, there is still lack of information about ethnic food because of limited research being done in this area.
The traditional classical recipes have now started being considered as ordinary by most of the people in the hospitality industry, hence even chefs have started to prefer a widespread choice of mixed ingredients. In order for chefs to create something exciting for the market it has become crucial to mix and match ingredients to come up with culinary wonders. A successful fusion can be one which discovers combinations never heard of, which created a sense of excitement in the minds of the customers and please their palates. The chefs who are ready to create fusion must research enough and carefully think to combine ingredients which balances the flavors and textures. According to the research and findings, fusion of two or more cuisines can be defined as the new world cuisine. Coming in of two different cuisines, it promotes cultural interaction and culinary globalization through travel and media. It has also brought expansion and new content opportunities for the cook book authors. Furthermore, as people has now started to focus towards their health and lifestyle, it has become very appealing to mix the healthiest of the ingredients from different cuisines. As said by Chef Sanjeev Kapoor ‘fusion music is rocking the world, so is fusion cuisine and it is only the beginning…the best is yet to come!’ The fusion dining experiences has become very trendy in recent decades, but it's an ancient tradition. People have mixed cuisines since time began, sometimes by accident, sometimes by necessity, in efforts of making foreign flavors more delicious or by substituting unavailable ingredients for local ones.
“Fusion cuisine is a good way of popularizing a certain kind of cuisine.” There used to be a time when used to be a very time consuming and tiresome process. But with fusion gaining its popularity chefs started fusing it into their dishes. For example, rice and curry is a popular dish around the globe but it may not be cooked in the way it is cooked in India, but at least people are familiar with it. There used to be a time when lentils was popular only in parts of Asia particularly in India. Today it is used in a lot of delicacies such as soups. While this may appear a strange thing to the group who has traditional eating habits, but from the cuisine point of view, it is all about accepting new food. Fusion creates an opportunity to give a regional touch to traditional cuisines and create interesting recipes. It is likely to be more common in culturally diverse areas such as India where there is a extensive population for such food. Fusion recipes have evolved in different ways in the country.
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