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Taste of Adratic Celebrates Culinary Heritage with New Intern

We are delighted to introduce Abhijit Pakhurde, our new intern at the Association for Gastronomy Culture and Heritage, “Taste of Adriatic.” Abhijit hails from India and is currently pursuing his MA in Tourism Management at the University of Bergamo. His journey is as rich and flavorful as the dishes he loves.

“Cooking has always been my passion,” Abhijit recalls. “As a child, I dreamt of becoming a chef and often found myself experimenting in the kitchen. However, my path took a turn towards Hotel Management, where I discovered the intricate interplay between hospitality, gastronomy, and tourism. This realization ignited my curiosity about travel behaviors, leading me to explore the world and eventually win a scholarship to study tourism in Italy.”

We sense a taste of India in his kitchen, so we ask what three must-try dishes are from his Maharashtra region. “I have a sweet tooth,” Abhijit confesses with a smile. “First, there’s Butter Chicken – a dish where succulent chicken meets a rich, creamy curry. It’s best enjoyed with naan bread and a garnish of butter, coriander, or green chilies. Then, there’s Apurampuri, a delightful Maharashtrian dessert.

Finally, Gulab Jamun – deep-fried milk solids soaked in a sugary syrup flavored with saffron, cardamom, and rose water, often garnished with nuts. It’s a favorite during the festival of Diwali.”

“Traveling is a personal treasure trove,” Abhijit explains. “Collecting fridge magnets is a simple joy for me. I love discovering new places, meeting people, tasting local cuisines, and understanding the tourism dynamics of each destination. Every trip is a new adventure.”

So, why did Abhijit join our organisation as an intern? “I chose this association because of its commitment to authentic culinary traditions. It’s an excellent platform for food enthusiasts and travelers alike, offering deep insights into regional food heritage. As a student of tourism, I am particularly drawn to food tourism, and this internship is a fantastic opportunity to learn, taste, and write about diverse cuisines and culinary experiences.”

What’s your take on Croatia, where you did your first internship tour? “Zagreb and Rijeka are perfect for nature lovers and those seeking relaxation. Croatian cuisine, with its emphasis on organic and local products, is a significant part of the tourist experience. Learning that Croatia boasts a high number of EU-protected products was eye-opening.”

And your second destination, Malta? “Malta’s cuisine is a delightful surprise. While traditional rabbit dishes are well-known, I was impressed by the island’s vegetable-oriented cuisine.”

Navigating dietary choices in a culinary world is very specific for Abhijit, as a person with clear dietary restrictions. “As a vegetarian who abstains from alcohol, I focus on the cultural and historical aspects of food. While I may not indulge in certain flavours, I can still appreciate and convey the essence of a region’s culinary heritage. Plus, vegetarianism and veganism are growing trends, providing ample opportunities in this niche.”

Finally, his internship independent task is to design a vegetarian-based tour in Bergamo. How does he feel about it? “I’m excited! Bergamo offers many affordable vegetarian dishes. I especially love Paccheri alla Vittorio, a rich and flavourful Italian dish of paccheri pasta and a red sauce based on three types of tomatoes. Bergamo region is famous for its cheeses, such as Taleggio, Strachitunt, Formai de Mut, and Branzi, so it is a nice place to explore cheeses from the foothills of Alps. And don’t forget Stracciatella comes from Bergamo! I do not think it will be very difficult task, but very enjoyable!”

Join us in welcoming Abhijit Pakhurde and celebrating the rich tapestry of gastronomy and tourism that he brings to our association. His journey and experiences promise to add new flavours to our collective culinary adventure!

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