Taking food art to another level, Poulami Bhattacharya is turning food into cartoon characters, people, and even legends like Subhas Chandra Bose, Kavi Kazi Nazrul Islam, Gopal Bhar, and Swami Vivekananda!
Poulami Bhattacharya, aka Kanasu (A Dream Interpreter), runs a page on Instagram which is not only fun to scroll through but is equally mesmerizing. She is a fabric painter, jewellery, and food artist. Her paintings are a treat to see, but her food styling is something that caught our eyes. Fascinated by various arts and crafts since her childhood, Poulami holds a degree in animation and loves cooking and serving food to people in unique ways. This interest and hobby led her to experiment with different food, and the results are outstanding!
"Due to some difficulties I had to leave the job and then I started working on my own as a fabric painter. I always liked serving food aesthetically so that it looks attractive. So, yes that's how I got interested in food art or you can say food plating artistically.", said Poulami to Local Samosa.
Though food art is not a new thing and has been created as gifts for marriage ceremonies, there are very few food artists who do justice to this art, and Poulami is definitely one of them. " I was inspired by a few foreign food artists. Though this art is pretty old, and it is very common to find models of bride and groom, butterflies, palanquins, etc with milk cake or kheer.", she added.
You will find different cartoon characters, personalities, and many other things designed with nothing but food on Poulami's Instagram. Right from Pluto to Nemo, to Kung Fu Panda, to a burger princess, we love how she is using food and recipes to make characters and even human beings. When asked how much time does it take her and how does she work on the ideas, Poulami Bhattacharya said, " Well, it depends on the theme that I am going to work on. Generally, it takes approximately 3 to 5 hours. Ideas completely depend on my mood. Therefore, I sometimes choose Bengali famous characters or eminent personalities from a film or novel. Sometimes I pay tribute on birthdays. Also, I am a big fan of Disney cartoons that's why you'll always find me delighted to select Disney characters now and then."
The way she uses different ingredients is mind-boggling. From making a Gramophone with coffee, milk powder, and chocolate to making Satyajit Ray with just Tea Leaves, Poulami is definitely an expert when it comes to food art. The hard work is visible as each one of her plates is packed with details. Among all her designs, the one that took her the longest to make was the food art of the famous Bengali comedian Gopal Bhar. " There were many food items, so it was difficult. I had used different types of Bharata for this plating. So at first, I had to prepare all the items and then I worked on it.", she explained.
One of our most recent platings is of the Sleeping Cat on Hilsa Fish, and it's nothing but adorable. You see it, and you want to admire her work instantly. This rice cat is her favorite too. "I always try to make it perfect as much as possible but I never felt so satisfied with my work. I always find my next work better than the previous one. So, it’s a never-ending process.", she said.
Her platings are different, there is a variety, and a lot of effort goes into each one of them. When asked does it get difficult to find something that suits her imagination Poulami said, " Yes always! I have faced this issue every time where my imagination had to be compromised due to the unavailability of some items. Sometimes, I had to use substitute items but it should be edible to use it for different parts or shades of the particular character."
Poulami is passionate about food and its plating to such an extent that she sometimes even forgets to drink water. She gets herself immersed in work until she gets them right, and for her, it's all worth it. " Every time after work I feel sick. Once I was sitting on the floor and did food art continuously for 5 hours and ended up having blisters on my leg."
We appreciate her hard work and the magic she creates with her hands and creative mind. Her Instagram handle is Kanasu which means a dreamer. " I chose the name because I always dream about creating something unique, something new or good. So, that's why I chose the name Kanasu, a Kannada name, which means a dreamer.", Her perfect food platings of Disney characters are what we adore the most and feel that they add on to the magic on her feed.
Poulami Bhattacharya hails from Kolkata, and so we couldn't leave her without asking a few must-quick questions!
1. What is it about Kolkata’s food culture you love the most?
Kolkata has a mixed culture. You will not only find Kolkata style delicious Mughlai dishes, but also Chinese, continental and Bengali dishes here.
2. Three things one should do in Kolkata?
Try the street foods and various sweets. Travel around the cities, especially to Victoria Memorial, Maidan, River cruising, Tagore House, Netaji Bhaban, and Belur Math. Also, don't forget to experience the culture, watch any theatre or drama, visit fairs, like Bookfair, handicrafts fair, etc.
3. Best place to get the traditional food in Kolkata?
For traditional Bengali food: 6th Ballygunge Place, Oh Calcutta, Bhojhori Manna, Kasturi, Saptapadi, Cafe Ekante Eco Park, The Bhoj Company, and the list goes on. To gorge on Mughlai head to Royal Indian hotel, Zeeshan, Shiraj, Awadh 1590. For Chinese visit Mainland China, Hatari, Tung Nam in Territy Bazar, ShangHai, and Tyangra.
Follow Poulami Bhattacharya on Instagram to see your favorite Disney characters here.