When Kaathi rolls and tandoor came alive at Flemington

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When Kaathi rolls and tandoor came alive at Flemington

When Australia’s retail giant Harvey Norman rolled out their biennial industry conference this July at Flemmington, one of the highlights was the presence of two Indian tandoors rolling out seekh kebabs and naan lighting up the palates of almost 6000 enthusiasts.
It was for the first time that the tandoors, a creation of seasoned chef Sachin Garg, made it to the Flemington grounds. It was a magic five-day event, says Garg, whose catering service Sachin Garg Catering, was specially selected to be a part of this mega event.
“It was a huge task,” says Garg, who had eight staff working on a 20-hour shift. “It was a simple menu of seekh kebabs, kaathi rolls and naan. Samosa and mango lassi were sold like there is no tomorrow, three times more than what I had expected.”
The iron-walled, portable tandoor, says Garg, is very healthy and hygienic as the cooking is not infused with burnt-out coal. Some of the Australian patrons remarked, “‘Oh you’ve taken me to Delhi for free.”
Few years ago, Garg had told this magazine that a part of his endeavour as an Indian chef on Melbourne’s culinary map was to educate people that Indian food is not all about greasy curries. He has managed to change that concept by taking a simpler Indian menu to office lunches, board rooms and conference rooms. The Harvey Norman conference is a testimony to the changing face of Indian food.
“We served 3000 people the first three days which was only for Harvey Norman, and the weekend was opened to the public, where we did another 3000. It was exhausting but very rewarding. I was so proud because it was the first time that anybody took a tandoor there,” says Garg.