The Culinary Symposium Of Millets, With Shri Krishna Byre Gowda

It was an enriching and enlightening experience for me to be part of The Culinary Symposium On Millets, held recently at MS Ramaiah University, New BEL Road.

Dignitaries like Shri Krishna Byre Gowda, Hon’ble Minister of Agriculture for State, Government of Karnataka; Karnataka State Agriculture Commissioner Shri Satheesh; Executive Chefs from The Oberoi, The Taj and a number of other hotels of great repute, representatives of eateries like SodaBottleOpenerWala and MTR as well as from food delivery services like FreshMenu, producers of millet-based foods, food critics and other well-known figures from the food scene in India, as well as select food bloggers.

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Left: Shri K Satheesh, Shri Krishna Byre Gowda and Mr. Ramaswamy Selvaraju (Executive Chef of Vivanta By Taj, Bangalore, present at the event; Right: Shri Krishna Byre Gowda making a point at the Symposium

The Symposium was a run-up to the Organics & Millets International Trade Fair 2018, which is to be held at the Bangalore Palace in January 2018. The event was a huge success in 2017, and it is expected to be even bigger and better in 2018!

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Left: Veterans from the hospitality industry in India, discussing their expectations and plans for the Organics & Millets International Trade Fair 2018; Right: Ms. Priya of MS Ramaiah University, who has made a significant contribution towards the millet cause, in co-ordination with the Government of Karnataka

The event served as a meeting point for various stakeholders to meet and discuss the road map to the very promising Organics & Millets International Trade Fair 2018. Restaurants, food bloggers, social media experts, home chefs, hotel management institutes, culinary studios, everyone has a role to play to make the upcoming event a success all over again, something that was discussed in great detail at the symposium.

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A discussion in progress at The Culinary Symposium On Millets. Dignitaries from the Government of Karnataka, food bloggers, experts from the Indian hospitality industry, representatives of various restaurants from Bangalore, and producers of packaged millet-based foods were all part of the discussion.

Some of the key points discussed were:

  1. What restaurants could do to educate patrons on the importance of consuming millets and how to gain better acceptance for them.
  2. Organising millet-based cooking competitions to encourage more people to cook with millets, especially homemakers.
  3. Organising workshops at various places to teach people how to cook using millets.
  4. Involving street carts and stalls in the millet cause, and encouraging them to use more millets in their offerings.
  5. Including millets in the curriculum at hotel management institutes.
  6. Introducing healthy millet-based foods in school and college canteens, as well as hospitals.
  7. Training of the staff at hotels in how to use millets in cooking.
  8. Ensuring a steady supply of various kinds of millets to restaurant kitchens.
  9. Spreading awareness about the benefits of consuming millets, in schools and colleges.
  10. Spreading the word about millets through Instagram and other social media networks, so that the campaign can reach the younger generation.

Another reason for the organisation of this Symposium was to showcase the huge variety of foods (traditional as well as contemporary, vegetarian as well as non-vegetarian) that can be prepared using millets. These dishes were all thoughtfully conceptualised and prepared by students and chefs of MS Ramaiah University.

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SOUP: Left: Some very delicious Ragi And Tomato Soup and Right: Sorghum And Chicken Soup, both presented at the Symposium; Centre: The pretty ladies who prepared these soups

I was surely awed by the sheer variety of millet-based dishes on display! Mind = Blown! I could see the other guests at the Symposium having the same awe-struck reaction on their faces, too. Of course, how could they not?!

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SALADS: Top left: My personal favourite dish at the Symposium, a sweet-sour-salty-crunchy-spicy-nutty salad made with baked millet sprouts and a lot of nuts; Below: The millet sprouts used in the salad and another presentation of the same beautiful salad; Top right: A salad made with ragi crisps and millet sprouts; Bottom right: A salad made with fruits and assorted millets

Along with the other guests, I sampled the dishes on offer – the vegetarian part of it, that is. Most of what I tried out was absolutely, finger-lickingly delicious!

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APPETISERS AND MAIN COURSE: Top left: Jowar Pasta in the making, along with jowar-based white sauce to go with it; Below: Stuffed Chicken made with millets and Kaalu Saaru, a gravy made with millets and green gram; Top right: A tasting portion of the Jowar Pasta; Bottom right: Sorghum Tacos

Drooling yet? No? 😦

Well, the desserts will make you drool for sure! Take a look at them!

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Left and centre: Jowar Jalebi in the making!; Right: The beautiful jowar jalebi served with rabdi
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Top left: Millet brownies; Below: Millet Fruit Tarts; Bottom Right: The bajra and jaggery halwa that I adored; Top: Lavang Latika made with sorghum (left) and Chocolate Millet Bars (right)

Mind you, this is just a small part of the millet feast that was on display at the Symposium – this is just for the purpose of representation; there was much more!

I hope you enjoyed the visuals! Do drop in a note, through the comments, to tell me what you thought of this post and the pics.

May this inspire all of us to do more with millets in the days to come! And, oh, don’t miss visiting the Organics & Millets International Trade Fair 2018!

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For more pictures from the event, check out my Facebook album here!

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3 Comments Add yours

  1. Currylines says:

    Well written. Glad that you are helping to spread awareness of this good cause.

    1. @currylines

      I’m glad to be doing my bit! 🙂

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