(Left)Chef Joel’s winning dishes. (Right) Chef Joel Basumatary with Meghalaya Chief Minister, Conrad K Sangma and the runner-up Chef Clive Lyngdoh at the NEFS 2019, Shillong. (Morung Photo)
Morung Express News
Nagaland’s very own Chef Joel Basumatary won the “Chef Wars 2019” at the first ever North-East Food Show (NEFS) 2019 held at Polo Ground, Shillong from December 4 – 6.
The NEFS 2019 was organized by the State Government of Meghalaya, in collaboration with the SIAL Group and North East Entrepreneurs Alliance (NEEA) supported by governments, chambers, media and professional associations.
Chef Clive Lyngdoh, Executive Chef of The Loft – Executive Inn, Shillong was the runner-up in the professional category.
The show is a first of its kind in North Eastern India that is focused on creating a global platform to ‘Inspire Food Business’ for this part of the country and a not-to-be missed opportunity for the National & International Markets to connect with local producers and entrepreneurs from the North-East.
The 2019 edition saw the participation of over 200 brands making it the region’s biggest food innovation showcase.
Chef Wars 2019 was the highlight of the NEFS 2019.
Chef Joel won from a pool of ten professionals from the North-East. It also had a separate competition for amateur chefs. The pool of competitors in both the categories was trimmed down to 5 each in the second and final round.
While the first round included a 2 course meal, the final round included a 3 course meal – starter, main course, dessert.
In a tête-à-tête with The Morung Express, the talented Chef Joel spoke about the competition.
He said that the competition was an incorporation of local ingredients selected by chefs from the Chef Community in North India under the aegis of the Indian Culinary Forum (ICF).
Wondering what was Chef Joel’s winning dishes?
For starters, he made Perilla crusted fried fish with crispy fried spinach with rice powder served with lai king chilli sauce.
Main course: Poached chicken with smoked chilli sauce served assorted veg, mash and peppercorn sauce.
Dessert: Orange glazed tapioca and nuts cake with jaggery orange sauce. Sluurp!
Happy on winning the competition, Chef Joel said that he would like to tell all the upcoming chefs to “whatever you make, you should never forget your roots and incorporate your traditional ingredients in your cooking.”
The purpose of the initiative, he said is to support the principles of the culture of good food in the North-East, through a project that aims at showcasing how local & indigenous ingredients can be incorporated into cotemporary & unique dishes to celebrate the array of food products in the North-East.
This exciting event is the region’s premier dedicated B2B platform that is aimed at marrying the best of the North East with the best of the food and food processing world.
The Show provides entrepreneurs with the perfect platform for sourcing food, beverage and hospitality products and services in a trade-friendly business-class environment.
The event showed strong presence of food processing businesses of all the North-Eastern states and their respective governments showcasing unique products of the states as well as National & International Exhibitors, natural-herbal-organic producers and processing companies. It also featured ‘Experience Zones,’ tastings, demonstrations, North-East Kitchen, conferences and other activities. The next edition is likely to be held in December 2020.