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A Seven-Course Dinner to Celebrate Section 377 Verdict


From economictimes.indiatimes.com: Sukanth Rallapati (40), an IT consultant in Bengaluru, is taking an interesting culinary route to celebrate the recent SC verdict on Section 377 decriminalising homosexuality and to narrate his story of coming out as gay. He is hosting a seven-course sit-down dinner in Telugu cuisine at a chef’s table curated in Domlur this Sunday. While serving favourites from his mother’s kitchen like puffed-rice upma and chutneys, the passionate cook will tell his tale of struggle with sexual identity, his loving partner of seven years and how the journey impacted his cooking. It’s food with a context. “Some paint. Some write. I choose to express myself through food,” he says.

Rallapati’s dinner is just one of the unusual sit-downs hosted by the Supper Club, a concept communal dining launched in the city recently. It is the next step in experiential dining. Giving dining table conversations a twist, the club hosts food-and-storytelling sitdowns in an intimate home setting for a price.

This Saturday, the club is hosting the cuisine of the Chettiars from the coastal town of Poompuhar, Tamil Nadu. Steering away from routine chicken Chettinad at restaurants, the tale at this table will revolve around flood-stricken seafarer community of Chettiars whose culinary history was influenced by Burmese, Cambodian and Vietnamese cuisines.

Food writer Priya Bala says, “Restaurants are trying hard to win customers with short-lived gimmicks and Instagram food. Food goes way deeper than presentation. It has a narrative that comes from an organic space which engages the diner and gratifies the chef.”

Bala too hosted a communal table at the club where she served conflict cuisine from war-torn Sri Lanka. She narrated stories of terror and deprivation from her country while serving dishes like Jaffna koozh or stew made with a humble medley of small fish to vadas sold by war widows.

Kanishka Sharma, founder of the Supper Club, traced her own culinary journey from making maggi noodles, student days in America making chicken stew with chai masala to preparing lamb broth jelly as a self-taught chef today.

“As food forms an intrinsic part of Bengaluru’s pulse, communal table like ours gets people to try cuisines in a new way and meet new people,” says Sharma, who will host a table narrating conflict kitchen stories from West Bengal-Bangladesh in October.

Expats and foodies have been primary takers of these unusual sitdowns. Like French native Lily Jory, who works at The National Centre for Biological Sciences, Yelahanka. “Food-and-story sitdowns are a great way to spend the weekend, meet likeminded people and make friends. It is a social experience,” says Jory.

Reported by Smita Balram for The Economic Times.


 

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