The Cooks Alliance consists of a network of cooks and chefs who value the potential of traditional ingredients and are involved in the promotion of innovative local cuisines.
Some of the key activities the network focuses on are
- Knowledge sharing,
- Flavour innovation and
- Collaboration with projects, institutions and individuals who are interested in reconnecting people’s diets with what is locally available.
Perhaps the pivotal facet of the network is “Innovation”. Flavour innovation is about progressing in culinary arts using already existing methods and traditional ingredients to develop unique dishes and recipes.
The alliance is a way of operating through the newly developed project of Indigenous Cafés that serve good, clean and fair food to consumers. Additionally, those within the network seek to tie up with local producers to source their ingredients and focus on using the neglected and underutilized plant species in a sustainable manner. The Cooks Alliance is also looking at urban areas to work with schools, colleges and governmental and non-governmental agencies to understand and research the medicinal values of plants. This information can then be incorporated into recipes for their medicinal and nutritional values. Cooks in the Aaganwadi Centres (ICDS) can then benefit from them and tie up with projects such as School Gardens and Midday Meal Schemes.