Flowers made from carrots? Peacocks from radishes? Faces from pumpkins? Is this even possible? Yes, all this is possible in the hands of Master Chef Umashankar Dhanapal.
Representing India in the IKA culinary Olympics in 2012, he used the theme ‘Incredible India’ and has made India proud. After having his training under Chef Ludek Prochazhka from Czech Republic he earned the bronze medal for his scintillating vegetable carvings.
Master Chef Umashankar held a two day workshop for 6 students recently in his kitchen. He also gave them the tools. He started the class by explaining about vegetable carving. According to him, vegetable carving originated in Thailand. The country had celebrated festivals in which vegetable carvings were used for decoration. China had the tools as they thought that vegetable carving as a dying art and might disappear. He showed the tools that could be used for vegetable carving and also explained those which should not be used. He says that carving knifes should not be used to cut citrus fruits as it may make the knifes blunt. He encourages the students to teach other people the art of vegetable carving.
In the workshop, Umashankar first taught the children how to make leaves out of spring onions. He mentioned the different ways to cut and the ways to not cut. He also taught them to make various other flowers from vegetables and some fruits. Some of them are peony flowers and wild chrysanthemums from raddish and carrot. The students had took home the items they made in the workshop.
The session was a fun-learning one. Children will start eating more veggies if they get fascinated by this art. So start learning now!
Master Chef Umashankar runs an institute Knife and Impressions – The Institute of Carving. He can be contacted at 9840087854.