We kicked off 2017 with our very first session of the “Meet the Chef” series in style.
Punjabi cuisine expert, Chef Sweety Singh of the Kake di Hatti fame and Chef Ashish Bhasin, Executive Chef, Trident BKC, brought a little bit of the hotel’s Punjabi Rivayaat Festival to our studio. The format was a hands-on workshop designed around authentic Punjabi winter delicacies for 10 lucky cooking enthusiasts.
While most of us view Punjabi food through the lens of popular restaurant dishes like Butter Chicken and Paneer Tikka and their rich, creamy gravies, this workshop opened up a whole new dimension to this beautiful cuisine for many of us. Chef Sweety and Chef Ashish explained how, unlike typical restaurant food that relies heavily on dairy for its richness, authentic Punjabi food gets its richness from a combination of the right ingredients, cooking techniques, and a generous amount of love. This, they summarised, is the foundation of Chef Sweety’s version of soul food!
A notable feature of Chef Sweety Singh’s menu, both at the studio and at the festival, is that the dishes included in it are not available as regular fare, even in his restaurant. They are dished up only during special food festivals like the one in the Trident, BKC, and for this workshop at the studio.
We began the session with learning his secret recipe of Bhatti da Masala. This superbly aromatic and flavor-rich spice mix is used in Bhatti (Clay Oven) cooking of yore. The spice mix of coriander, yellow chilli, cinnamon, cumin and more originated as a warming masala that is used on everything from paneer to prawns, mutton and chicken and is ideal for the winter months. We marinated chicken in the masala and put it into the oven to bake. The chefs then guided participants in cooking Dahi da Kukkad – a simple dish if chicken, cooked slowly in yogurt. The workshop ended with a scrumptious lunch comprising of several other dishes from the Rivaayat Menu.
Chef Sweety Singh’s culinary wisdom, simplicity and respect for produce reflected beautifully in his instructions. His patient, insightful explanation of the science behind marination – prepping ingredients and process execution, provided those present with a lot of cooking tips that could be implemented for general cooking in their respective kitchens.
You can catch a glimpse of Chef Sweety Singh’s workshop on our Facebook Album.
Our endeavour at the Studio is to constantly create opportunities to learn from experts like Chef Bhasin and Chef Sweety. We are gratified to have them share their expertise so generously with our patrons.
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