Okay. This week is having a horrible start. But I have to say this.
Yesterday, Chef Ashish Bhasin from Leela Gurgaon posted a video about an Odia biryani that has curry leaves and mustard seeds. He called it the singature biryani of Odisha. As per facts, Odisha does not have a biryani of its own. He called it a Koli biryani. There are no kolis in Odisha. Biryani with mustard seeds is a horrible idea and thank god it does not exist outside of his kitchen. Odias on the post were ecstatic because someone had mentioned odisha. The ‘chef’ is shamelessly sharing his misdeed and there is not a single blogger/writer to point out the scam. The video was deleted after I pointed it out but he never responded to any of my comments.
Now, Chef Anahita Dhondy of Soda Bottle Openerwala fame goes to the global citizen festival to talk about millets and sustainability and develops a lazy bone while cooking. Here is what I thought.
You are a young chef of repute. You are representing the country on a massive global stage. And you serve
Millet Masala Spiced Salad.
First of all that’s bad English. You added masala because it had to sound Indian and spiced because you had to clearly explain what this beast is.
This beast is called MEDIOCRITY. This is like you didn’t study the whole year and mugged up one evening to spill enough nonsense on paper so that it gets some sympathy.
This beast is lazy. Even if you wanted to do something millets that the westerners would understand, it did not have to be a tossed salad. A salad can be amazing but it is not a cooking technique.
You boil millets and sprinkle them over a salad. So, it could be a chia salad or pumpkin seed salad or the done to death cous cous salad. How did you bring anything to the table ?
After Leela Gurgaon serves a signature Odia biryani that doesn’t exist, we have a young talent that decides to sneak a lazy single when she could hit it out of the park.
And, no one calls out. The critics are silent. The writers are silent. Where are your opinions and suggestions and creative critique? Stop this you scratch me and I scratch you. Challenge each other when needed and encourage when deserved. Otherwise, the Indian food scene will be like Bollywood and no better.