Ahead of Independence Day, here’s how Indians are savouring on regional culinary cuisines from across the country

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5 August, 2022; Mumbai: As India prepares to celebrate 75 years of Independence, food and local cuisines hold a special place in this journey. The term ‘Indian cuisine’ signifies a mixture of flavours from different regions of the country and invokes sentiments which remind everyone of the comforts of home. Insights from The Godrej Food Trends Report 2022 state that people will continue to bond over food passed on through the generations, while looking inwards, rediscovering forgotten dishes and savouring local produce that had been neglected such as consumption of local and artisanal grains.

The report highlights the growing Pride in Culinary Identity, the dawning awareness of the true richness of India’s culinary heritage and the inherent wisdom that is found in traditional culinary practices. When it comes to food, consumers have been recognizing and exploring the richness of foundations that contributed to the evolution of this space. With renewed pride and need for novelty in India’s culinary identity, diners are seeking diversity in regional cuisine concepts that offer rich nutrients and flavours of traditional culinary traditions. According to the historical study of food, a culinary lifestyle is associated with the development, technique, and presentation of cooking and dining that reflect the diversity of a country.

The Godrej Foods Trends Report 2022 – Collector’s Edition elaborates on the vibrant foundations and evolving facts of culinary culture. A few of these insights that are based on opinions of over 200+ thought leaders that included celebrity chefs, home chefs, professional chefs, food bloggers, health professionals, media professionals, mixologists, nutritionists, restaurateurs, sommeliers, food producers, and more, all of whom shared deep insights about their respective areas of expertise.

Some key findings that have emerged for 2022 are:

· REGIONAL CUISINES – 56.3% food experts believe the new-found pride in culinary identity and need for novelty will drive Indians diners seek regional cuisine-based concept

· REDISCOVERING CULTURE – 55.6% of panel experts observe an interest in exploring culinary identity by rediscovering their roots through food, be it that of family, community, or their own home region

· DINING OUT – 50% panel picked Mountain Cuisines of India, and 48.4% voted for a deeper exploration of North East cuisines

· REINVENTING DISHES – As chefs and restaurateurs delve into local exploration and rediscover cuisine, 43.1% panel see people are drawn towards nostalgia foods/dishes, reinvented by chefs

· TRADITIONAL SWEETS: 42.6% panel sees growing sense of pride in home-made traditional, regional Indian sweets and mithais. Sweets will continue to hold pride of place on home menus in 2022 but with an approach of controlled indulgence and moderation

· SUPPORTING FARMERS: 70.8% panel sees the consumer, mindful of the impact their choices have on the environment, making conscious choices to support buying from local farmers and food producers.

Rushina Munshaw Ghildiyal, Curating Editor of the Godrej Foods Trends Report 2022 said, “Indian cuisine is throwing off stereotypes and being recognised for its nuanced complexity. A movement of self-discovery we have observed growing in the Indian Culinary Scape over the past four editions. In 2018 we saw the first evidence of interest in India’s diverse culinary culture with curiosity around regional Indian cuisine burgeoning. In 2019 that early curiosity grew, into deeper explorations of micro-regional cuisines. Which ignited interest in rediscovering traditional ingredients, cookware, and fats. 2020 brought the pandemic that changed everything globally. In India, the home kitchen came into focus, and we began to rediscover our roots. In 2021 this crescendoed into the renaissance of regional Indian food discovery, as we reclaimed our culinary heritage. “From discovering ancestral roots to savouring regional micro-cuisines, from reignited interest in Ayurveda to traditional cookware and cooking fats these are the trends shaping India’s food habits in 2022.”

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