Recognizing the need for comprehensive books for students pursuing their career in hotel management, I decided to write books for students and everyone interested in cooking. The first volume, Food Production Operations, educates on basic commodities, methods of cooking, and basics of pastry and Indian cuisine. The second volume, Quantity Food Production Operations and Indian Cuisine, touches base upon volume cooking and Indian cuisine. The third volume, International Cuisine and Food Production Management, is an extension of the first two volumes and it is expected that students have read them to be able to grasp the third one better.
This book builds upon the basic knowledge of culinary principles, the various kinds of commodities along with the fundamentals of bakery and Indian kitchen that students would have acquired in the first stage of professional training. It introduces the students to volume cooking and catering and Indian cuisine. It discusses various catering establishments and, based on their unique requirements, enumerates the fundamentals of menu planning. The book elaborates on the importance and method of planning required to make the best use of the available space, raw material, and other essential inputs involved in volume catering. It also takes into account various purchasing and indenting related issues such as proper storage of large quantity of material, customizing recipes and portion size for volume production and catering. While doing so, it also enumerates various challenges that these processes involve.
Geographical location of the place has a big impact on its local cuisine as the climate and the produce governs the cooking styles and flavours. The book presents the flavour profiles of different regions of the country and discusses the reasons for the same. Various other features of Indian cuisine, such as staple diet of a particular region, characteristic equipment of various cooking styles, and speciality cuisine for festivals and other occasions, are also included.
The book delves into the ancient techniques of Indian cooking, such as dum and tandoor, and describes a number of dishes prepared using these. It also highlights the importance of rice in the Indian diet across different regions and communities and discusses some basic rice preparations. Aspiring chefs would be introduced to a variety of Indian sweets and their unique religious significance. Different kind of chaats and other street foods are also enumerated. As the inter-state mobilization of individuals in the country is significant, one often misses the flavour and touch of home-cooked food. The present day chefs also need to cater to this desire for ghar ha khans of their customers. The book addresses this area in detail.
The knowledge provided in this book will be useful in the preparation of various recipes (337 recipes) listed in the CD accompanying this book.
Chef Parvinder S. Bali is Corporate Chef-Learning and Development at the Oberoi Centre of Learning and Development (OCLD), New Delhi. A certified hospitality educator (CHE) from the American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA), he is also a certified professional chef from the Culinary Institute of America and a certified chef de cuisine from the American Culinary Federation.
He is also the author of Food Production Operations and International Cuisine & Food Production Management, both published by OUP.
Food is an integral part of most ceremonies, celebrations, and functions around the world. `What's in the menu?' is a question that caterers are often asked by customers at the dining table, be it social gatherings or official conferences. Once the curiosity of the customers gets satisfied, they tend to evaluate the food they consume. The preparation and presentation of the food reflect the expertise of the person(s)/chef(s) working in the kitchen.
Being a chef is like being an artist and a professional at the same time. What makes the role of a chef unique is that he/she must utilize all the faculties of sight, smell, taste, and touch to ensure that the dish is cooked to perfection. One must fall in love with the utensils, the spices, the kitchen, and everything else that contributes to the making of a dish. The food speaks volumes about the passion with which it is cooked.
Today, chefs do not work in hotels and restaurants alone. Various other establishments, such as industrial catering, theme-based banquets, railways and airline catering among others, have generated the need for specialized cooking and trained professionals. Therefore, aspiring chefs require proper guidance and training to meet the demands in all these diverse establishments. Now, these establishments have their own particular requirements and therefore need a customized menu. For example, a hospital catering may prioritize healthy food while keeping low on spices. Whereas, a luxury cruise line catering would want to offer rich and exotic dishes to their customers. Hotel management students would need to remember that the number of people that these establishments cater to may vary from a few persons to hundreds or even thousands. Therefore, food preparation and catering often take place in bulk.
Students of hotel management are also required to study the diversity of regional Indian cuisine as a part of their curriculum. Food, particularly in India, has rich socio-religious associations. Add to that the unique culinary identity of different regions and communities of the country. Each of these cuisines has a rich historical context and is influenced by the staple diet of the local people and seasonal availability of vegetables among other factors. Festival and celebration, of course, bring forth altogether new colours and flavours of these individual culinary traditions.
Quantity Food Production Operations and Indian Cuisine introduces the aspiring chefs to the aforementioned processes and practices involved in volume food production. It also discusses the rich diversity and intricacies of Indian regional cuisines. The book is particularly meant for-students who have already been introduced to the basics of culinary studies.
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