Dining Services brings authentic cuisine to campus

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Chef Shobhit Mohan of Indian uses authentic Indian spices to show students how to cook Chicken Tikka Masala. He said sharing authentic cuisine with students through the Global Chef Program has been a rewarding experience.

Rachel Stevenson

Kent State ining Services brough authentic Indian cuisine to campus and gave students a taste of home by hosting their fourth Global Chef demonstration and tasting Friday.

“The global chef program is designed to help bring a taste of home to the students and also introduce students to new and different cuisines,” said Tim Wright, assistant director of Dining Services.

He said bringing authentic dining options to students is a main goal of the program sponsored by Sodexo.

“Chef will have a specific spice or a specific utensil, things that make the dish authentic,” he said. “When we create dishes without the authenticity, it’s an Americanized thing. It doesn’t taste the same.”

Chef Shobhit Mohan of Indian was selected to share with students the flavors of India at this semester’s Global Chef demonstration, and he said he has enjoyed the opportunity to share authentic cuisine with international students at Kent State.

“There are a lot of Indian students and not only are there Indian students, but there are international students also who love authentic cuisine,” Mohan said. “And they have not been getting it so much in a way here.”

Myrma Lamda, an English major from Honduras who attended the event said she feels as if Kent State does not offer a very wide variety of authentic dining options on campus.

“It’s kind of difficult because I think most of the time they are trying to focus on the majority of people,” Lamda said.

However, Lamda said she believes events like the Global Chef demonstration bring more diverse and authentic dining options to campus.

“They are trying to give out variety when they have these kind of events, or they try to offer something different,” she said.

Lamda also said that regardless of how authentic cuisine is, students cannot get the same dining experience until they travel to that country.

Wright said Dining Services plans to implement recipes learned from Mohan into the menu at Tandoori Oven in Kent Market 2 to make cuisine more authentic on campus.

“It brings them back to home. As a chef, it’s very rewarding when what you put out there is taken so positively, and it warms your heart. This is why I do what I do,” Wright said. “You’re giving from your soul when you make the food and create it. For them to take it and appreciate it for all it is and more, words can’t explain.”

Students who attended the event viewed a demonstration on cooking Chicken Tikka Masala and received complementary spices alongside the recipe to try at home. They also were given the opportunity to try a wide range of Indian cuisine.

Mohan said the complementary spices and recipe encourage students to try new recipes at home and cook both diverse and authentic meals.

“So many people can actually do Indian cuisine, but the way a person coming from that place can do, nobody else can,” he said.

Mohan said seeing students appreciate his recipes and enjoy the food has made working with the Global Chef Program a rewarding experience.

‘They have been appreciative of the food, and there’s nothing more satisfying for a chef than to see people with a happy face enjoying their food,” he said.

Contact Rachel Stevenson at [email protected]