Indian Ambassador to Israel Jaideep Sarkar has announced an Indian cooking competition. The winner will receive two plane tickets to India, including a dreamlike week in a hotel.
The competition was launched during an event organized by the Indian Embassy in Israel in honor of the screening of the film "The Lunchbox," which takes place in Mumbai.
The contest, named "Cooking Indian – Flying to India," will include several stages. In the first stage, the Israeli public is asked to share recipes for Indian dishes on the Facebook page of the Indian Embassy or Yedioth Ahronoth.
In the second stage, the judges – including chef Yonatan Roshfeld, Israel's "queen of curry" Reena Pushkarna and the ambassador himself – will select the 20 most promising recipes. Their creators will be asked to participate in a tasting competition with the meal they prepared, after which the judges will announce the five finalists.
The final will be held in several weeks at the ambassador's residence in Herzliya Pituach in a festive event with dozens of guests.
The winner announced by the judges will get two plane tickets to India and a one-week hotel stay. The rest of the participants will receive consolation prizes such as a meal in an Indian restaurant, tickets to a Bollywood film and Indian-made products.
"Israelis are familiar with Indian food from their trips to India and they are looking for authentic restaurants. But there are not enough places which serve Indian food in Israel," says Ambassador Sarkar, who initiated the competition and is a huge fan of Indian cooking himself.
"I would very much like to promote Indian cuisine in Israel. I am interested in introducing the Israelis to the mystery and infinite versions of Indian dishes."
The ambassador adds that "every Indian man knows how to cook, especially a diplomat like me who served all over the world. Although I love Indian food, I am open to any cuisine."