Palm Oil Educational Module & Young Chef Competition @ Guru Nanak Institute of Hotel Management, Kolkata, India ☺

Event: Palm Oil Educational Module and Young Chef Competition

Organized By: Malaysian Palm Oil Council (MPOC)

Venue: Guru Nanak Institute of Hotel Management (GNIHM), Kolkata

Date: 23 Mar 2018

Time: 10 am – 2 pm (For Bloggers) and 9 am – 5 pm (For GNIHM Personnels)

“GNIHM is a Kolkata based prime hotel management college. It has one of the best and biggest infrastructures and is affiliated to National Council for Hotel Management and Catering Technology, Ministry of Tourism, Govt of India, New Delhi. It is also affiliated to West Bengal University of Technology (WBUT) and approved by All India Council for Technical
Education (AICTE) and UGC.”

“MPOC is a Council under the Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities of Malaysia. Its role is to promote the market expansion of Malaysian palm oil and its products.”

To do their bid in Kolkata, last year MPOC organized one of the biggest possible Bloggers Meet over treasure hunt, seminar and lunch. The aforesaid Bloggers’ cumulative write-ups acted as an awareness drive to educate the local citizens, or at least netizens, about the existence, usage and benefits of Malaysian Palm Oil.

My coverage of the same can be viewed at –

This year MPOC took their mission to a big and reputed hotel management institute, wherein it got access to today’s youth, who will run a host of tomorrow’s commercial kitchenns and influence the cooking system in general.

This was a stepwise intelligent strategy by MPOC, intended to spread the knowledge on Malaysian Palm Oil, its various health benefits and how it is completely apt for Indian cuisines.

The event at GNIHM kick-started with an awareness seminar.

Simultaneously, the contest participants were handed over their respective surprise ingredients. They were asked to cook an assortment of starters and main course dishes, using their secret ingredient and of course Palm Oil. The cooking duration allotted was of 3 hours, at the end of which, they were supposed to hand over their well plated dishes for judgement.

The Judging Panel comprised of the following popular chefs – Chef Avijit Ray, Chef Riju Kumar Dey, Chef Mukul Sarkar and MPOC official Ms. Bhavna Shah, Country Representative – India & Sri Lanka.

The idea was to establish the fact that all popular delicacies can be made with equal ease with Palm Oil, without an iota of compromise on their taste.

“With a 100-year history behind its development and growth in Malaysia, it is the answer to the nutrition needs of not only the Indian population but also globally. With its rich supply of vitamins and anti-oxidants, it has been proven to be a healthy component in the daily diet.”

While the judges were busy with their detailed screening of each and every dish, the invited Bloggers were treated to an in-house made sumptuous lunch.

At the end of it all, Certificates of Appreciation and Certificates of Achievement were handed over to the rightful candidates.

My experience with this event:

I spent a short time in the seminar as it was a repeat process for me. Rather I spent a considerable time in GNIHM’s kitchens (read hot kitchens) and exchanged communication with their faculty members.

It needs to be said that, clad in their white uniforms and caps, handling assorted pots and pans with trained hands, not wasting a single second in idling or chatting, the students were focus and dedication personified. Their counter tops and hands were clean and they worked in perfect unison sans any clash.

Their surprise vegetarian ingredient happened to be Paneer (Cottage Cheese). Thus the humble Paneer was given an assortment of twists and turns, in the name of age old recipes, as well as, modern age fusions, and the following vegetarian items were presented for judgement –

– Paneer Lababdar
– Nawabi Paneer
– Paneer Masala
– Stuffed Grilled Paneer With Makhani Gravy
– Paneer Tikka Masala
– Shahi Paneer
– Stuffed Pakora With Makhni Gravy
– Malai Kofta

Of course, a host of non vegetarian items were also there.

All the prepared items looked quite good and some of them also whiffed out strong aroma.

During my course of conversation with the respected faculty members including the Principal, I realized that all of them were quite well informed about the various myths and facts, in concern with assorted cooking oils and other edible products. Also, they were quite house proud of their institute and various achievements of their students.

Oh! How I missed my alma mater and loving teachers at that point of time! Aren’t educational institutions the only place where you are not only trained and taught by many for your own benefit, but also rejoiced by them for your own achievements!

All in all, it was kind of different, but interesting and insightful blogging event. And visiting a well run educational institute was pure nostalgia!


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