Exciting blended version of traditional recipes like the dal makhani cappuccino served as a soup with steamed foam is the latest fad in Chandigarh, culinary artiste Athar Hussain said.
Hyderabadi Biryani, for instance, is not just a recipe but a complete sensory experience, JW Marriott chef Hussain said.
Just moved to the City Beautiful from two and a half years of stay in Dubai, the chef has the expertise in Mughlai and Hyderabadi cuisines.
"To kick-start my gastronomic journey in Chandigarh, I wanted to introduce the recipes that are the closest to my heart. Hyderabadi Biryani, for instance, is not just a recipe but it is a complete sensory experience for anyone who has tasted its original form. Same goes for authentic delights like Nihari or Galouti," he said.
Authentic Hyderabadi recipes showcase strong Mughlai influences like the Dum Pukht or the slow steam-based cooking technique.
Even Nawabi decadent delights like Nihari or rich mutton stew and Galouti from the Mughalai cuisine are now a part of mainstream Hyderabadi cuisine.
Hussain's exposure to Mughlai cuisine began at a young age as he trained under his uncle who happened to be an expert on this cuisine by the virtue of working as part of Mughal Khansama in Kolkata.
Whenever his uncle visited their native place in Jharkhand, Hussain said he was trained under his guidance which allowed him to learn the nuances of Mughlai cuisine.
Later, Hussain moved to Hyderabad where he worked with different local culinary masters to learn the basics as well as intricacies of Hyderabadi cuisine.
Hyderabadi delicacies like Dal B-e-Aab, a rich combination of lentils and clarified butter cooked extremely slowly over charcoals, Lagan ka Murgh, the chicken cooked in a traditional brass vessel or Lagan, and the authentic version of Gosht Biryani are must-try for their delicate rustic flavours, he said.
Another interesting fusion recipe in the menu is the Bullet Naan, signature bread that is best paired with Dal B-e-Aab or Nawabi Nalli Nihari.
"For retaining authenticity, we are using techniques sacrosanct to each of these cuisines along with the use of traditional vessels like copper 'lagan'. We have sourced the renowned 'Potli Ka Masala' from Hyderabad for preparing the culinary delights and will be using charcoal to slow cook the Biryani," Hussain explained.
'Potli Ka Masala' is made by mixing 20 or more herbs and spices like sandalwood powder, dried rose petals, roots of betel, spiked ginger lily, black cardamom, and stone flowers.