All around the world, food is what brings everyone together. The culinary landscape is becoming more and more experimental and is opening up chefs’ minds to include cuisines and ideas from all over the world into their kitchen. Amidst this global transformation in the food industry, fusion cuisine has picked up great appreciation from food critics, chefs and food lovers.
Fusion food is largely defined as the marriage of two or more cuisines, use of regional ingredients and techniques from different countries and nations to produce a single “dish”.
Why has fusion cuisine piqued the interest of the food commuity world over?
Food is often compared to an art form and the canvas of cooking keeps evolving beyond the classical techniques and methods. In order to expand their culinary repertoire, chefs are constantly trying out new flavour combinations to create a dish which is truly unique and distinct from their peers and competitors.
Fusion cooking can even be employed as a means of subtly introducing new food concepts to the masses. There is still a large section of people who have their reservations when it comes to new styles of cooking, and like their food cooked a particular way. It is usually the young generation who are more eager to expand their pallettes and are on the look out for new food ideas.
What comes to mind whn one says spaghetti? Italian! Right? Not exactly, spaghetti was introduced to the Italian cuisine when they came to know of noodles which originated in China. And today, spaghetti is so intrinsic to Italian cuisine that it hardly counts as fusion. Similarly, flatbreads, which are staple to cuisines across cultures were first created in India.
So, how are we interpreting this fusion culture in our food today? It is as simple as “figs poha”, “idli munchurian”, or as fancy as “pesto fish tikka”, “goat cheese samosa”. Traditional desserts are also being redefined in the form of “thandai cheesecake” or “kala khatta panacotta”.
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Even though this cuisine has gained popularity among a large audience, there lies a fair amount a risk which should be taken into account while experimenting with different cuisines and flavours. The biggest fall back with fusion cooking is that the chef’s imagination runs wild. It is a fact that certain ingredients require being cooked in particular ways, at particular temperatures and for fixed lengths of time, if they are not to be spoiled or perhaps dangerously undercooked. This means that although fusion cooking is a form of expression, logic and common sense must prevail at all times.
Here are some tips to bear in mind:
1. Know your ingredients and conduct proper research when it comes to cooking techniques.
2. Restrain yourself from applying multiple cooking techniques to one dish.
3. Try to think rationally.
While all of these steps are important, one should not stop being creative as the culinary world is full of possibilities and can take you as far as you are willing to take it!