This is an archived or old post. The information might be outdated.

David Rocco Talks to LBB about Food and India

Aditya posted on 8th February

Dolce India is a TV show that doubles as the culinary travelougue of celebrity chef David Rocco {it comes on Fox Life}. The show is back for a second edition, featuring Rocco travelling around our country to discover and learn new techniques and styles of desi cooking. You can catch the second season every Monday and Tuesday at 10pm on Fox Life.

We asked Rocco some questions on India, food and his favourite dishes, and here’s what he told us!

First off, what made you decide to do a culinary tour of India?

This is the second season of Dolce India, and actually my fifth time visiting the country, so it wasn’t so much a decision to do a culinary tour. It was more of a deep yearning to return and eat everything I could get my hands on.

Which city stood out for you? Why?

Amritsar was wonderful. It’s very intense there, but the people are so warm and the city is full of colour. I loved visiting the Golden Temple and trying all the street food, like the kulcha and stuffed naan. I almost died from the butter overload!

Which Indian cooking technique do you find most fascinating?

I always thought of naan as having this sort of chewy pizza-like texture, but in Amritsar they actually stuff it with minced mutton and spices, and then cook it in a tandoor and it’s absolutely brilliant.

Any plans to use Indian cuisine or styles for a fusion dish in the future?

Yes, for sure! I’ve been incorporating Indian ingredients at home ever since we filmed season one. Mustard oil, mustard seeds and a lot of the herbs and spices really lend themselves well to fusion dishes. I love making a mutton bolognese with Indian spices to add to my pasta.

One Indian chef you’ve encountered here that you would like to collaborate with?

Chef Ajeeth from the Brunton Boatyard in Kochi was just awesome, and I’d love to work with chef Mayank from ITC Kolkata again. Both were so skilled and absolute masters of the spices.

What was your favourite thing to do in Delhi?

Delhi is like my home away from home when I’m in India, and one of the things I love to do when I’m there is eat streetfood. On this most recent shoot, I tried some really great stuff – egg keema, seekh kebabs, shammi kebabs, and vegetable sabzi pakoras. So good, so flavourful … it was unreal. Great, now my mouth is watering!

You must have tried a variety of dishes, spices and restaurants. Can you tell us one restaurant that stood out the most in Delhi and the rest of the country?

I’ve been to so many amazing restaurants in Delhi, it would be impossible to name just one. Keep up the good work, guys! When I was in Goa, I fell in love with Calamari Beach Shack — I really admired the simplicity with which they prepared things, and all of the food there is amazing: Not just the fish but the vindaloos as well. Their lamb is incredible.

Did you try any street food? What was it, where was it and what did you think?

I feel as though all I’ve done so far is talk about streetfood! I really loved trying the paneer bhurji and the aloo tikki in Amritsar. So much butter, but so good. I’ve never been a really big fan of paneer on its own, but the bhurji was out of this world.

If you had to come back to India and had to live here, where would you stay and why?

Since this is hypothetical, I’d want to live on the beach in Goa and be a beach bum. 

One takeaway from your Indian expedition?

I have an even greater appreciation of how big and diverese india is in terms of the food and culture. From Goa to Kerala to Amritsar, it’s all so different. I’ve learned so much just in a single trip.

There you have it folks: Official confirmation that Delhi street food is the absolute best.