F.O.O.D! In today’s world it is not just something that is needed for survival, it is more
than that…it is a cultural art. So much is written about food now a days. Writing about
food, hotels, bistros and cafes has become a full-fledged profession in today’s scenario.
KitchenAid Brand Consultant, Travel and Lifestyle enthusiast and writer – Rupali Dean,
conducted a FOOD WRITING WORKSHOP at the hottest Hotel Management Campus-
IHM Aurangabad (Institute of Hotel Management, Aurangabad) from 14th December
until 17th Dec 2015. The 3rd Year Culinary Arts students aka the budding chefs learnt
the art of writing about food over a two and a half day workshop!
The workshop named ‘PalatesAndPens’ started the first day with- few words on food
and flavor. The enthusiastic and anxious students expressed different food items not
through their writing skills and had to describe flavors and ingredients like: Rose Gajak
and an assortment of flavored candies (cola, strawberry, orange, grape etc) in a few
These young chefs were exposed to some fine tastings and techniques of the traditional
‘Valencian Paella’ made with original ‘Bomba Rice’ a famous produce of Spain, which
Ms Dean had especially got from Valencia on one of her travels. There was also some
exotic tasting of the Persian ‘Zeresch’ berries, and an Irani culinary Arts student Afsane
Niroomand helped make the classic Iranian ‘Zeresch Pulao’ for tasting and
understanding the complex yet classic flavors…nothing can be more authentic than
This food and flavor packed day came to its inevitable end, after a session of creative
writing where the students had to ‘Think! Ponder! Wonder!’ How to create something
different….Something out of the ordinary.
The next day saw even more excitement for the young chefs!
The students started their day by tasting the warm and ‘South American’ taste of the
power-grain ‘Quinoa’ adapted into the freshness of Mediterranean salad. Appreciating
and critiquing the taste of foreign ingredients, it was time to get back to Indian
flavours, which had been infused into a well-planned and well executed Maharashtrian
tasting menu, for these upcoming Chefs and writers of the country at a prominent
Business Hotel in Aurangabad. The afternoon started with a very warm welcome and
some words of wisdom from the General Manager Rupesh Singh followed by a seven
course High Tea Menu along the pool side made the energy level high as Chef Binish
Bobby gave insights into the cuisine while the budding writers tasted and took notes.
The photographers of the day included Uday Malhotra, Manek Singh and Shreya
Punshi. The ‘Chatar Patar High Tea’ menu served in seven courses was a Maharashtrian
delight with the proper use of various spices giving local flavours and was served pre
plated. Some of the highlights from the menu included street food like Missal Pav,
Kothambir Wadi, Mirchi Bhajji, Puran Poli, Shrikhand etc to name a few. The students
were given a deadline of fling their review after a week and the best 3 reviews will be
published in esteemed publications.
Back to the classroom, the ‘KitchenAid Recipe Writing Contest’ was declared. Each and
every student participant had to come up with a creative Indian recipe using the
KitchenAid Stand Mixer and Equipment’s which they are well versed with using at the
IHMA. The next day saw some exceptional recipes like: Bengali Gondhoraj Souffle by
Oishi Nag, Bohri Kalamra by Kumail Doctor and Shikampur with Ulte Tawa ka Parantha
by Yashveer Singh, MasalaChai Cheesecake by Kanak Manchanda, Indian Festive
porridge with spiced fruit compote by Aditya Baxi to name a few
(KEEP FOLLOWING KitchenAid BLOG, AS MANY DELICIOUS RECIPES ARE SOON
COMING YOUR WAY!)
The final day, all the students were rewarded for all the hard work they had put in since
the beginning of the workshop. Ms Rupali showered the students with KitchenAid tools,
restaurant meal vouchers and recipe books for Best Instagrammer, Best writers, Most
Creative Recipes, Regular Submissions, and Best Dressed for the review, Best Facebook
Page Admins and Best photographers.
Though it might seem a simple job to write about food and recipes…we learnt the
intricate details and the responsibilities of a food writer. It is not just about writing, it’s
about the delicate portrayal of all the textures and taste through writing. Tasting the
food and feeling its complexities is easy but being able to pen them down in words is a
challenge, which can be handled only by experts who know the complexities of
ingredients and their beautiful flavours.
We got our hands on some of the writings. Check them out!
Zeresch Pulao: Iranian black pearls imparting contradicting tart and sweet elements to
a flavorful bed of rice.
Spanish Paella: Aromas of chicken stock picked up instantly around the paella pan,
tantalizing taste buds and pulling towards the saffron flavored bomba rice.
(By Aditya Baxi- One line describing the tasting of Zeresch Pulao and Spanish Paella.)
(By Nikita Fernandes)
I learnt about quinoa, an alternative to starchy grains and with properties that are very
beneficial to one’s health when I first came to IHM-A. The ‘Palates and Pens’ food
writing workshop with Ma’am Rupali Dean gave me an opportunity to finally taste this
ingredient that the world is raving about. When I first saw the salad, I was a little
unsure and hesitant to taste it, coz trust me the gruel colored salad doesn’t really
please your first taste sense, your eyes. The grains looked like fish eggs something that I
can certainly do without. The only thing that caught my interest was the feta cheese,
oh how I love it and of course the colorful bell peppers. A cupful of quinoa salad in my
hand I apprehensively sat to watch the ‘Eat Stay Chill’ videos that Ma’am wanted us to
watch. I finally convinced myself to take my first bite. Hesitantly I filled just the tip of
my spoon with the salad and prepared myself for my first bite. I was blown away!
Why I never indulged in this ingredient before bemused me. To the bite, the quinoa has
a slightly squeaky feel which is something new on the palate. It doesn’t have that much
of a unique taste to it, but paired with the feta, peppers and chickpeas, this salad is
something that could be a great healthy meal. I am definitely going to experiment with
this ingredient and try and create dishes that are different from the norms. I’m not
much of a health food person, but quinoa has kind of captured my foodie attention for
now. I hope to indulge in it, and also introduce my folks