A Rainbow On My Plate
By Chef Radhika Ichhpuniani
The relationship between food and colour is centuries old but still unexplored. Colorful & vibrant ingredients go a long way in making our platters more appetizing, healthy and delightful. After all, we savor the food with our eyes before it reaches our palette. In fact, many times we don’t even want to try the food if it doesn’t convince us visually at first. (Yes, it’s not just kids who want visibly exciting food – it’s the adults too!)
At Rainbow Rasoi, it is our constant endeavor to make the whole experience of eating food delicious as well as stimulating. Of course, it goes without saying that we use only natural ingredients to add that extra punch to a recipe. Artificial colorings or additives are a big no-no.
Be it parmesan cheese snowflakes on penne arrabiatta, pomegranate jewels on the humble curd rice or bright green basil leaves and black olives perched on the luxurious tomato risotto – there are millions of combinations and pairings possible to make any platter stand out and shine.
How to make food colorful?
The simplest way to transform a dish into a vibrant meal is garnishing. A colorful (and edible) decoration can enhance the taste of the dish along with making it look rich and beautiful. Creative garnishing on a daily basis may seem daunting at first but if give it try, you will realize that it is almost always possible to infuse your meals with more zest and enthusiasm by using a rainbow of fruits, vegetables, herbs, etc.
From the humble pav bhaji to the elaborate penne in pesto sauce, all the dishes can be adorned with colorful toppings that enhance their presentation and how they appeal to one’s palette.
Color is good for health too!
Filling your plate with foods of multiple colors is very beneficial from a health perspective too. It ensures that you get a balanced dose of nutrition in the form of phytochemicals which occur naturally in various plants. Phytochemicals have various health benefits such as better immunity and over all well-being. If you use raw fruits and vegetables for garnish, you will automatically be gaining the health advantage associated with them.
How to bring color in daily meals?
You will certainly have to stretch beyond your usual comfort zones, find recipes & ingredients that span across cuisines, countries and definitely look past your neighborhood grocery store. More importantly, and this is the most difficult part for many of us, spend time in the kitchen cooking for yourself and your dear ones. Do not see cooking as a chore. Food nourishes us & gives us pleasure, hence it deserves special effort and attention. You will notice that when you wear your chef’s hat in the kitchen and get creative, the stratosphere is the limit.
Indulge in some colorful cooking and explore its various positive effects on your mind, body and taste buds!
About Chef Radhika Ichhpuniani
Radhika is a chartered accountant and a management graduate by profession who realized that she loves cooking food more than cooking up numbers. Born in a Punjabi family and married into a Tamilian one, she feels privileged for having been exposed to such diversity in her life and incorporates the same in her food. Having lived in Singapore, Canada and UK; she is inspired by international palettes and ingredients; and creates exotic concoctions in the kitchen. She was a sous chef in her mother’s kitchen from the age of 10 and learnt many fascinating kitchen secrets from her over the years. She has her own catering business by the name Rainbow Rasoi. As the name suggests, you will experience a vibrancy of flavors, colour, nutrition and just the right amount of olive oil in her offerings at Holachef.
Hey rads, awesome. Proud of you.