Sunderland chef selected for top curry festival in India

An award-winning curry chef from Wearside is preparing to cook up a storm in India for this year’s Taste of Britain Curry Festival.

Saturday, 23rd February 2019, 8:00 am
Chef Syed Zohorul Islam.

Syed Islam, who is executive chef at the Capital restaurant, in Durham City’s Claypath, is among five British chefs chosen to show off their skills at the gathering next month.

The festival, in March, will show off the best of British curry at the five-star luxury hotel, JW Marriott Chandigarh, India.

Chef Syed Zohorul Islam. Picture by FRANK REID

The team will be headed by Abul Monsur, one of the most experienced and celebrated curry chefs in the UK who is the head chef at iconic restaurant the Taj Cuisine of Chatham.

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Syed, from the Thornhill area of Sunderland, said: “It’s a great honour to be selected to represent Great Britain at this festival.

“I am really looking forward to cooking for a new audience, especially at the JW Marriott Chandigarh, which is acknowledged as the best hotels in the city.

Chef Syed and his colleagues will produce a range of new dishes giving a spicy twist to traditional British meals as well as classic high street favourites like chicken tikka masala, balti and vindaloo.

Acclaimed Michelin-starred chef Mark Poynton, who has worked with many globally famous chefs, will accompany the team to India.

Festival organiser and the editor of Curry Life Magazine, Syed Belal Ahmed, said: “The experience of the Taste of Britain Curry Festival is one not to be missed – our food festivals are outpourings of incredible flavours. You will find finest food brought to you by chefs with a real passion and talent.”

Syed is the only chef selected from North East of England to represent Britain at the prestigious festival.

Andrew Ayer, the British Deputy High Commissioner to Chandigarh will be inaugurating the festival.

The prestigious festival is being backed by industry figures like chef Mark Poynton, who has worked with the likes of Daniel Clifford and many other Michelin Starred chefs.

Festival Founder and Editor of Curry Life Magazine, Syed Belal Ahmed, said: “British food is enjoying a renaissance period after many years and curry has played a major role in helping put us back in the world kitchen.

“We’re keen to promote the presentational, artistic and culinary skills of British Asian curry chefs and their role in helping the humble curry evolve to met the tastes of food enthusiasts.

“This festival is not just about British curry cuisine, it is also a wonderful way of showcasing the best of British chefs and their best food creations.”