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Latin American and Caribbean food festival wins the hearts of many

Published in LifeStyle Monday, 01 April 2019 16:17


                                     Jose Kalathil 


"You win the heart of a person through his/her mouth," says the adage. This was proved right on Thursday at the Latin American and the Caribbean food festival organised by the embassy of Peru in collaboration with the embassies of Colombia, Ecuador, Guyana, Mexico, and Trinidad & Tobago at its cultural centre in New Delhi. After tasting the mouth-watering dishes spread in their respective stalls, everybody said in unison, "how yummy it was!"


The over 100 food aficionados who came to taste the gastronomy of these regions also got a chance to vote for the best food stall. The Mexican stall, which had dishes such as quesadilas, esquites, salsa roja, and salsa verde was declared the best. According to Mr Santiago Rui of the Culture and Tourism of the Embassy of Mexico, a quesadilla is a flat circle of cooked corn or wheat torilla, warmed to soften it enough to be folded in half and then filled with oaxaca cheese, cooked vegetables such as potatoes with chorizo,squash blossoms, mushrooms etc. Traditionaly, it is cooked on a comal. Esquites are made from mature corn and then boiled in salted water. It is served hot in small cups and topped with varyngcombinations of lime juice, chilli powder or hot sauce. Salsa roja is made of jitomate (red tomato), ground with onion, garlic, chilli, pepper and salt. Salsa verde is a type of spicy, green sauce, whose main ingredients are cooked and then ground.


He said that the embassy has been participating in such festivals recently to create awareness about the food habits of Mexicans.


About Mexican cuisine, Santiago added, in his country, Mediterranean, Mesopotamian and Southeast Asian dishes are popular. He said that like Indian culinary tradition, Mexican cuisine is the result of the encounter of flavours, ingredients and techniques from other cultures. Thanks to Mexican creativity, he said, the kitchen is the place where incentiveness and heritage come together to create surprising, healthy and creative dishes. 


Ecuador ambassador Hector Cueva Jacome said they are planning such occasions every six months. When pointed out that the banana chips served at the Ecuador stall was similar to the one popular in the state of Kerala he said in his country it is fried in a mixture of coconut oil, lemon juice etc.  

Ambassadors and top diplomats from the above countries were also present on the occasion.   

According to Sailee Rangole, cultural assistant of the embassy of Peru, more such events are planned by the embassy in the near future.         


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