The quality of the ingredients, care and attention given to the cooking techniques and presentation styles opened up a whole new world of cooking for Peter, becoming the driving force behind his own cooking style. ‘We focused on producing dishes that had wonderful layers of flavour achieved through delicate spicing and authentic cooking techniques, but it didn’t stop there; the look of the plate, the detail in the presentation and the front of house service were all equally important.’
In 2012, Peter became head chef at Tamarind, introducing new concepts such as tasting menus and his now famous Pudhina lamb chops. ‘Nowadays, my cooking style remains true to what I believe good honest food is all about,’ he says. ‘I love spices and I love using different combinations to produce fantastic flavours all within an authentically Indian cooking style. Over the years my cooking knowledge has grown and I have been able to explore new ideas and areas of India that have influenced my dishes. I lean towards more traditional Indian flavours influenced by the northwest – I find the history of Mughal cuisine, biryanis, curries and kebabs fabulous. It’s a privilege to work in London because there’s an amazing variety of produce available – very traditional Indian vegetables are now easily accessible but I also love using great seasonal British ingredients to keep my food relevant and dynamic whilst remaining authentically Indian.’
Tamarind continues to offer Michelin-starred Indian cuisine under Peter’s watchful eye, with bright, beautiful and richly spiced dishes proving the country’s cuisine isn’t all curries served in bowls. ‘My plans for the future are to keep innovating and inventing new menus that will wow our guests,’ says Peter. ‘I want to push and develop classic cooking styles and use intriguing new concepts that will inspire a new generation of chefs and foodies.’
Peter loves British produce – especially meat – because it’s sustainable, fresh and local. He believes the producers are what makes it particularly good, and thinks the climate, water and soil all play an important part in the final flavour of an ingredient.
The tasting menu introduced by Peter at Tamarind was his way of showing that Indian food doesn’t have to be all curries and kebabs.
The ever-increasing popularity of Indian cuisine has resulted in a higher demand for regional specialities and historic dishes – both of which Peter incorporates into his menu at Tamarind.