Is South American cuisine going to be the next big thing in the city?
As cricketer Virat Kohli opens a new restaurant in Delhi that specialises in South American food, we ask chefs whether this is the flavour of the season.more lifestyle Updated: Jul 08, 2017 10:07 IST
Royal Challengers Bangalore captain Virat Kohli’s new restaurant Nueva in Delhi was opened to the public for the first time recently.The restaurant is helmed by chef Michael Swamy, who specialises in authentic South American cuisines such as Peruvian, Argentinian and Brazilian.
But it also got Delhi’s arm chair connoisseur ‘s curious and wondering, “Will South American cuisine be the new flavour of the season”? ‘What’s the reason for the lack of awareness regarding South American cuisine in the city’? “Can Mexican classify as South American” (We’ll answer this one for you. No it doesn’t, its Central American) “And is South American really that popular on the global culinary scene”?
A Slice of South America
Latin cuisine consists of culinary delicacies from countries such as Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia and Peru. What makes this cuisine unique is the use of condiments such as guacamole, pico de gallo, mole, chimichurri, chili, aji, pebre. These condiments are only available in South America and nowhere else. The cuisine also consists of combinations of braised aromatics, the specific term for it is Sofrito. Common ingredients used are tomatoes, bell peppers, onions and herbs. Latin cuisine also has some of the sweetest desserts such as Dulce De Leche and Alfajor
Here’s what leading chefs in the city say about it
“Restaurants in the city usually provide fusion Indian and North American cuisine. Therefore, the culinary scene in the city is getting a bit stagnant. And I think introducing South American can help break the monotony. Well, one of the obvious reasons that Latin cuisine is not popular is because people are not aware about it. However, the other reason is that some of the dishes require local produce. The raw materials need to be imported and that is costly. Peruvian and Argentinian cuisines are a quite big right now on the global culinary scene”.
Chef Kunal Kapur
“ Peruvian cuisine is one of the most popular cuisines right now in the world. One of the reasons that South American cuisine is not popular is because the continent is not a popular tourist destination for Indians. It’s at the other side of the globe, travelling there is not easy. Hence, I would say its unexplored. But hopefully, this should change the scene”.
Chef Sabyasachi Gorai
“I’ve been trained in South American cuisine and I know by first-hand that ingredients such as Jambalaya, Etouffee and crawfish are not easily available in the country. Therefore, providing authentic Latin cuisine for restaurants is not easy. Besides, the cost of importing ingredients from South America is expensive. Hence, there aren’t enough South American restaurants in the city as the operating cost is high for them. Peruvian cuisine is one of the most popular cuisines right now in the world. And I think, through this restaurant, foodies can become more aware about Latin cuisine and it can also become popular”.
Chef Nishant Choubey