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Adding value to local food through fusion (with video)
Xavier Gomes has been a chef for past 29 years and has experience working in hospitality sector in 11 different countries. Gomes has worked with some renowned organizations like World Chef Association. He loves to introduce new ideas, concept and new techniques to the world to the different geographical location. “I am a Corporate Chef for past seven years traveling around the world and doing the same job—cooking. I love my job because my passion for food gives me this amazing opportunity to learn people and tastes of different parts of the world and spread it wherever I go,” says Gomes. Xavier is based in Vernon, British Columbia who visited Nepal recently for a training session at Soaltee Crowne Plaza, Kathmandu. Here are the excerpts:
Which is your favorite cuisine and why?
Italian food is on the top of my favorite list and the reason is they are very simplistic homemade food retaining the natural structure of the product that they use. And, of course it is easy to make and delicious.
How do you see food future of Nepal?
Nepal’s food has a distinct flavor and assimilation of ingredients it has unique characteristics so it’s very interesting for me when I think about Nepali food. When I look at Nepal, I always believe that this is the land of opportunity. It’s that particular piece of land where abundance of natural produce is yet to be exploded.
Apart from that there are several species of seasonal herbs that can be produced in Nepal. Using local products and producing such a high class quality makes it really interesting and happy chef at the end of the day.
Is there anything special cuisines that you are going to serve here in Nepal?
While, I am here in Nepal, I am looking to develop the food concept, it’s all about how to infuse the international food flavors and melt them into Nepali structure. Nepali food is such a high class and unique interesting food that, when I think about international cuisine and infuse it with Nepali flavors, it is such an exciting journey for me.
What are you and your team working for?
The team is working really hard to put things together let’s say something that already exists and we are trying to give new dimension to and new experience to international tourists with the food. That’s my entire concept to bring here at Soaltee Crwone Plaza. At the same time we are also working to reduce food wastage.
Statically, the annual food wastage of Nepal is around 1.3 billion tons which equates to one third of the total human consumption. So, our vision is bigger than just serving food. We are focusing on maximum use of food products.
How do you feel about Nepal cuisines?
I must say Nepal cuisines are unique from rest of the world. Some of the foods like Jhol momo, churpi, Newari cuisines have their own way of presentation and preparation. Ever since I have come to Nepal, I have realized about the uniqueness of Nepali cuisines, otherwise I would have never known that there is such an amazing culinary art in this Himalayan country.
- by Sangita Shrestha
- by Republica
- by Aditya Neupane