BENGALURU: Being a chef is one of the most challenging professions. You’re constantly expected to be innovative and weave out recipes that are not only great to taste but are also unique. I started my journey 14 years ago and over a period of time gained experience in working in many different culinary roles and settings, and of cooking wholesome, healthy and well-presented meals. While my journey gave me an exposure to an array of culinary roles and settings; it also disclosed a world full of gastronomic magic that can be created using various ingredients - local and exotic to the destination.
It was during my association with a resort in Vellore, Tamil Nadu which is particularly famous for Aloe Vera or locally termed as Kathaalai plants that I got the opportunity to pursue a different take on Aloe Vera, which is otherwise known for its medicinal value. Due to its abundance, its medicinal use and utility of it in beauty products; this ingredient somewhat intrigued me to infuse it with culinary art as well. I along with my team began to experiment with this ingredient and tried to use its goodness in both savoury dishes as well as desserts. The dish which captivated my interest the most was the Aloe Vera & Coconut Mousse which we felt was unique combination with the advantage of retaining all the nutrients and flavours of Aloe Vera as it was not exposed to heat or steam.
This nutritional mousse is a rich blend of Aloe Vera extract and freshly extracted coconut cream sweetened with brown sugar.
Ancient records show that the benefits of Aloe Vera have been known for centuries, with its therapeutic advantages and healing properties surviving for over 4,000 years. Aloe Vera is indeed an incredible plant with a wide range of benefits. While most people know the Aloe Vera plant simply as something that’s used to treat sunburn, it has also been used for thousands of years to remediate a plethora of issues.
While an aloe vera plant is an important addition to the first aid kit for your kitchen, its natural properties and benefits provide so much more. Even though Aloe Vera juice has a somewhat bitter flavour, it can be artfully disguised to give delicious vegetarian recipes the most powerful nutritional punch. Aloe Vera juice can be used in smoothies, juicing recipes and salad dressings, just to name a few. Whatever the choice is for use, Aloe vera should be a part of everyone’s kitchen arsenal.
Sous Chef Thayanithy, Signature Club Resort