Launch time! Marwari book, TYC Shalimar Bagh, Hot Rocks Hyderabad

Delhi, 4th December, 2009

Getting a taste of the Delhi chill. Well, not so much but much better than Mumbai temperature! Got badly stuck in traffic outside the airport but am okay as had EMT (early morning tea) in the lounge.

Am in Delhi for the launch of TYC Shalimar Bagh and then flying off to Hyderabad for the launch of Hot Rocks tomorrow. Hot Rocks is a unique concept: interactive international cuisine in casual dining. You can expect a lot of freshly prepared, grilled-on-the-spot foods as also heat spots like sigdis of yore. I am looking forward to the African Safari theme as planned for the launch.

Had a wonderful time at the launch of my new book Marwari Vegetarian Cooking at Crosswords, Bandra yesterday. Rashmi Uday Singh was the guest of honour as also Harsha Batkal, director Popular Prakashan. He has been my publisher for years. The event was eventful as it was interactive. Volley of questions from the audience: what’s the inspiration for the book titles? Have always claimed that the titles are not something that I think too much about but the choice is based on the overall quest of recipes that my viewers, my readers, my audience feel I should have in my collection. In other words, it is their thoughts that I collate into the making of a book. As the snacks (based on recipes from the book) were circulated, I reiterated the need to keep an element of suspense when serving guests. I had finally decided to surprise the visitors with Kanji and Mawa Gujiya. And they loved the two! Another Q: what is the similarity between South Indian cooking and Far East cooking besides the use of coconut in them? Well, it is not only the coconut but even a variety of other spices that are common to both and this is what I have tried to highlight in my book Flavours of Orient that has recipes from the Far East modified to suit the Indian palate. I feel the authenticity of the recipe is important but with time the recipes have to evolve to suit the current trend. I was also asked about the current trend that would catch up: I have strong vibes that within India Japanese cuisine will have greater visibility as also recipes from the interiors of India which are yet unexplored.

Wound up the evening with a superb dinner at Taj Land’s End with some media personalities.

Till I write again

Sanjeev Kapoor.

TYC learning meet, Marwari book launch

Tomorrow is a red-letter day in the history of The Yellow Chilli brand. We have our first ever Chef and Managers (coming from all over India) meet in the office tomorrow and day after. We are calling it The Yellow Chilli Learning Meet. There are a number of sessions planned. Once I finish with my insights on the business plans and future of the brand, our COO Rajeev will talk about the ethos and culture of TYC. Corporate Chef Harpal is going to be talking about the new trends in food hygiene, and also an interesting review of a day’s routine at TYC. Mr Mukherjee will be covering the marketing aspects of the brand. All these sessions have been designed in such a way that there is sufficient time for feedback from all those attending it.

In a couple of days time my long awaited new book Marwari Vegetarian Cooking will be launched. Marwari cooking has its own unique flavour where the simplest and the most basic of ingredients go into the preparation of most of the dishes. A dominating realm of Rajasthani cuisine, Marwari cooking can simply be defined as the refined art of desert cooking. Earlier there was paucity of ingredients because vegetables and other produce could not travel on tough desert terrain but now with access to many more foods, Marwari food has more variety and more reasons to be celebrated. This book is proof that there is a lot more to Marwari cuisine than the famous dal bati and churma. I have yet to plan what snacks should be served during the launch as the proof of the pudding is in eating it! Could either have the Mirchi Bhajiya or the Aloo ke Sooley, or the Dal Samosa….Rashmi Uday Singh will be launching it at the Crossword, Linking Road, Bandra on Thursday the 3rd December, 2009 at 6.30 p.m.

Right now time for lunch and then busy again with back-to-back meetings!

Sanjeev Kapoor.