An Italian media-owned food channel called Cookist is attracting netizens’ ire after it shared a recipe for so-called “balloon bread” last week. The video shared by Cookist reminded many of the South Asian staple food item naan. A twitter user, shared the screengrab of Cookist’s Facebook post which described the naan as, “Balloon bread: the perfect alternative to usual bread.” Describing the process of making the balloon bread, the Facebook post read, “Just mix flour, warm water, warm milk, oil, and dry yeast. The result will leave you speechless.”
Sharing the screengrab on Twitter on Monday, the user expressed her reaction to the western appropriation of the naan and tweeted, “Excuse me, What?” The tweet has received over 12.1k likes since it was shared on the microblogging site.
Several netizens from the South Asian and Middle Eastern region shared their reaction to the tweet. One user commented, “now they’ll patent it.” Another user commented, “That is our ‘Roti’”
…now they'll patent it— Bharati Muralidhar (@BharatiMuralid2) October 5, 2021
Next they'll be calling ghee, cow oil 😂— mocha mochi (@MochiMeringue) October 3, 2021
The appropriation of Asian cuisine by the West who then repackage and sell it as their own did not go down well. As another user shared a picture of a bowl of rice and wrote, “Wait until they try these delicious snow grains.”
That's our "Roti"😭😂— RV (@GoneGuy007) October 5, 2021
The video of balloon bread was shared by Cookist last week. In the video, the cook follows a similar procedure of making naan bread. Netizens described the balloon bread as being pita bread or naan bread, but certainly not something revolutionary that was never consumed by the people especially those who belong to the South Asian diaspora. As one user commented, “Pita bread not balloon bread, I wish Gen Z cared enough to do actual research.” Another comment on the Instagram post read, “That’s called a roti. It’s been around for Ike 1000 years.” One Indian user commented, “Why add yeast and everything else when you can make it with wheat flour?
This is Tawa Chapati in India and it’s our staple diet.”
What are your thoughts on this recent Western take on Asian cuisine?