Sweet and Sour of Indian Chinese-The New Indian Express

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If anyone asks me what is my favourite cuisine, after Indian of course, my answer as always will be Chinese. I have always loved Chinese food and can list a few of my favourite dishes. Although the list is long, to start with, it has to be fiery hot and sour soup with egg drop, corn kernels deep fried coated with cornflour with extra spice seasoning, shitake mushroom stuffed with tofu with sweet and sour sauce, honey chilli lotus stem, steamed fish with black bean sauce, sesame prawns-deep fried with cornflour coating and sauteed with small evenly diced vegetables and extra garlic. Then there is chilli garlic rice and pan fried noodles with vegetables like snow peas, broccoli and water chestnuts and of course,how can I forget dimsums (which literally means touch your heart), with transparent and thin covering.

To tell you the truth, I am a desi at heart so I like my Indianised Chinese food. Chinese food we eat here is quite different from the Chinese food in China and not only that, Chinese food is different in every country.

China being a very large country has diverse cuisines originating from diverse regions. The history of Chinese cuisine in China can be traced back thousands of years. It has undergone changes from time to time in each region according to climate, imperial fashions and local preferences. Over time, techniques and ingredients from the cuisines of other cultures were integrated into the cuisine of the Chinese people due both to imperial expansion and from the trade with nearby regions in pre-modern times, and the New World in the modern period.

I did study that there are eiight traditional cuisines of China such as Anhui, Cantonese, Fujian, Hunan, Shandong, Szechuan and Zhejiang. The cuisines personally I personally love are Szechuan and Cantonese.

Since my latest book on the kebab trail has been shortlisted for the Gourmand World Cook Book Awards 2013 in the Foreign Cuisine category to be held in China in May 2014, I am already excited about once again travelling to the exotic and culturally rich country that has always intrigued me about the diversity of culture and cuisine just like India.

Chinese society greatly valued gastronomy and developed an extensive study of the subject based on its traditional medical benefits.

Rice and millets were the first domesticated crops. By 2000 BC, wheat had arrived from western Asia. However, these grains were typically served as warm noodle soups instead rather than baking into a bread like in Europe. By the time of Confucius, gastronomy had become a high art. Besides grain, Chinese eat a lot of beef, pork, chicken and fish amongst other types of meats.

In one of my earlier columns I did write about the dim sums, but today I am going to reveal some of my secret Chinese home kitchen recipes which are not only tasty but rather healthy.

First chef from India to be invited to Le cordon Bleu to demonstrate in Paris. Monish is credited with the trailblazing turn-around of Moti Mahal, from being a small but iconic presence in Delhi, to becoming a multi-national corporation that is well on its way to defining how the world eats Indian food. A traditionalist, Monish has remained true to the signature dishes that made Moti Mahal a legend, while reinventing the dining experience into one that is exciting and avant garde to suit modern sensibilities.

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