Catering for regional cuisines can be a challenge if you are only familiar with traditional Western cooking and serving equipment. Indian food requires several pieces of specialized equipment in order to create authentic flavors and textures, but most of what you would find in any Western catering kitchen can also be used for Indian cuisine.
Meals are traditionally served on a thali, which is sometimes used to refer both to the food being served and the tray arrangement used to serve it. A thali in the serving sense is a small metal tray with sides. An arrangement of small metal cups, or katoris, is filled with single servings of food and condiments and arranged on the thali. As with all types of catering, the quality of your equipment goes a long way toward defining and enhancing the quality of the food and your clients` experience.
Pressure cookers are a must if you are going to serve Indian food, because using regular pots on a cooktop for rice and lentils will take two to three times longer. essure cookers on the market is that they do a lot more than just pressure cooking. They can work as slow cookers, air fryers, rice cookers, steamers, yogurt makers, and more.
A food processor with both wet and dry functions is the first thing you will need. Many Indian spices are used in as fresh a state as possible, which means that things like coriander are kept in their whole seed shape until the chef is ready to use them. Garlic and ginger tend to be mashed rather than minced, which has a subtle effect on the flavor.
At least one industrial-sized karai will give your catered Indian cuisine the authentically layered flavors that are created by cooking different types of food in the same vessel. A karai is similar to an Asian wok and the cooking principle is the same: high heat at the bottom and cooler temperatures along the deeply curved sides. However, unlike traditional woks, it has a flat bottom and much steeper sides, which make it perfect for frying.
Large, heavy stock pots with thick bottoms are also necessary for cooking ingredients that must be simmered over medium-high heat over time. This method of cooking allows sauces and stocks to reduce at a higher intensity than the normal slow simmer, which builds the complex flavors that are Indian cooking`s rich hallmark.
For cooking breads like roti and chapatti, you will need a large tava. This is reminiscent of a flat griddle and is traditionally made of cast iron. You can make unleavened breads on a Western flat-topped griddle, but it will not taste the same as bread cooked on seasoned cast iron.
Circular and wooden, a patli is an elevated board that's used as a rolling surface. Indian kitchens didn't always have countertops, so the patli made it easy to roll out flatbreads and other items while sitting on the floor
Unleavened Indian breads are rolled out on a round board using a thin, light wooden rolling pin. Together, these are called a chakla belan. The heavier marble rolling pins favored by many pastry chefs will not work on Indian breads, because the extra weight can cause the dough to stick to the rolling pin and to the board.
Chimta, which is also often referred to as a chippio, is a sturdy pair of tongs with pointed or flared tips, usually made of iron but sometimes stainless steel. It's ideal for flipping flatbreads on a tawa and for holding rotis (or corn tortillas) directly above a flame to achieve a light char.
Air fryer is something you can use to make delicious, crispy, fried food every day without sacrificing your health, It uses little to no oil, makes food really quickly, and couldn’t be easier to use.
These round tins resemble old-fashioned film cans can hold several smaller metal containers (most commonly made from stainless steel) filled with spices, so you only need to remove the large lid to have all of the spices and seasoning you need right at your fingertips.
Side dishes are an important part of every Indian meal. There are so many options out there! We rounded up some of our favorite sides, recipes and all, so you can enjoy your next BBQ or just 'get together" and stay on the healthy path without sacrificing flavor.