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Flavours of nostalgia

  • Published at 06:19 pm February 5th, 2020
Avenue T Flavours of nostalgia
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It is a fact universally accepted, that Bangalis express their love through food

It is a fact universally accepted, that Bangalis express their love through food. Last month, Masterchef Australia finalist Rashedul Hasan treated the diners in Dhaka to a culinary lovesong to the city with a tasting menu weekend, hosted by El Patron and Chows. Titled ‘Aficionado’ the event was meant to give the diners a taste of what the chef can bring to the table, and to give him an idea of food preferences and trends in Dhaka.

A month on from the event, the man himself shares his thoughts about the menu he prepared, and the inspiration behind his decisions.

1. Passion bait - Tuna tataki with passion fruit and shorishar tel (mustard oil). “Inspiration is drawn from the innovative use of mustard oil. In every Bangali household any regular meal will start with bhorta which is mashed veggies or fish. Mustard oil, coriander and chilli are an essential part of it.”

2. Bovine potstickers - Shredded beef dumpling pots-tickers, bone marrow broth and pickles. “I love the concept of this dish - jhuri gosh dumpling with jhol.”

3. Starfruit burst – Starfruit shorbot, in white chocolate and cacao butter shell. “Growing up a Bangladeshi we all remember kacha aam (green mango) or kamranga (starfruit) shorbot. That perfect balance of sweet, sour, saltiness and spices. I was extremely happy to be able to package that as a surprise inside a white chocolate and cacao butter shell.”

4. Shrimp under the blanket- open king prawn lasagne with Asian crustacean broth, wild rice granola and crispy prawn heads. “This one was first main course and inspiration comes from watching Masterchef as a fan for many years.”

5. Beef ribbed off- Miso soy short ribs, smoked cauliflower, beetroot pickles, crispy enkoi, green beans and sticky sauce. “

This was the main course in the event, representing my modern Australian identity, meat and three veg but with Asian flavours.”

6. Borhani Ravioli Spheres– Smoked and beetroot-infused ravioli “When I was looking for inspiration for a palate cleanser I realised the ultimate cleanser in Bangladeshi cuisine is Borhani (yoghurt drink).”

7. Who burnt the chocolate - Smoked aero chocolate mousse, smoked butterscotch, raspberry sorbet, chocolate soil, raspberry coulie splat and tempered chocolate shards. “This dessert’s inspiration comes from two things: my take on a Season 7 dessert from Masterchef Australia, and tastes and flavours that I love.”

8. Mitha tukra- Mitha tukra (shahi tukra) Ice cream with watermelon and lemon granita, White chocolate coral tuile and bit of mitha tukra. “This is my attempt to modernise our traditional Bengali sweets, try to move away from too much sweetness and introduce different textures.”