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SICC: Creating a new milestone

The second edition of South India Culinary Challenge (SICC) 2017, organised by Food Hospitality World in association with South India Chef’s Association, witnessed record participation of more than a hundred chefs this year, a pointer to the growing popularity of the competition in the region

South India Culinary Challenge organised by FHW in partnership with South India Chef’s Association (SICA), created a record of sorts, in its second year, with participation from more than a hundred young chefs who showcased the skills before an appreciative audience and panel of judges.

“Bengaluru does not have chefs’ competitions as good as Chennai, that is why we are trying to promote the competition. Compared to last year we had more participants this year,” said Chef Jugesh Arora, president, SICA. He mentioned that the vision for IFCA and SICA is to ensure that Indian chefs and Indian cuisine come up in the world and compete internationally. “Unless our young chefs participate within the country, they will not be able to reach that level. India has the potential to be number one in the world. I am thankful to FHW to take the initiative, which it is not easy,” stated Chef Arora.

The competition category on the first day was – Tier Wedding Cake, Artistic Pastry Showpiece, Artistic Bakery Showpiece. The second day saw Live Cooking by Bengaluru Chefs, while the competition categories on the last day was – Fruit & Vegetable Carvings and Plated Appetiser.

“I could see overall improvement in terms of participation. We have to ensure that the younger generation get the detailing and attention about this profession. Day One  was dedicated to pastry and bakery. A lot of youngsters are taking interest in pastry craft – chocolate work and bakery craft,” said Chef Kasivishwanathan Muthuraman, VP, Karnataka, SICA. Pointing out that the participation numbers are increasing, he remarked, “The quality that they are putting on the table is taking a different dimension altogether. It is interesting to see youngsters coming up with unique presentations. It is a great learning experience for them. The participants learn from their fellow participants also. SICC is a wonderful learning platform.”

Live Cooking by Bengaluru Chefs brought to the fore the skills of Chef Santhanam S, pastry chef, Radisson Blu Atria Bengaluru; Chef V Muthamizhan, sous chef, Radisson Blu Atria Bengaluru, and Chef Sudhakar Mani, junior sous chef, Le Meridien Bangalore. “A chef can showcase his kitchen skills before the public, the latter can understand detailing like what is main course all about, what are the carbs, protein, how much sauce should be there, weight of the plate etc – this is educating the public,” affirmed Chef Kasi.

The jury were all certified jury members from SICA, some have even judged competitions overseas. “We made sure that none of the Bengaluru chefs were a part of the jury, who were invited from other states,” mentioned Chef Kasi. He believes that SICA’s association with FHW is maturing like a wine bottle. “We look forward to take this level to a different height altogether in the future. We want SICC to move forward and reach new heights and recognise young talents,” he added with apparent pride.

Today chefs do not just work in the kitchen, they are in the limelight and it is competitions like SICC that showcase their talent and help them to hone their skills. “We want the future generation of chefs to reach greater heights in the profession than even what we have achieved. Definitely the young talent will grow and excel. On behalf of SICA we want to thank FHW,” said Chef Kasi.

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GLIMPSES OF SOUTH INDIA CULINARY CHALLENGE

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