Chef-turned-writer Anthony Bourdain's sudden death has surely taken the culinary world by storm, as this worldly-wise traveller is a source of inspiration for all of us that aspire to understand the mammoth world of food and the intense relationship it shares with its people. Bourdain travelled to the strangest and remotest of places of the world to explore its history, heritage and people. For him it was simple, the one thread that tied them all was well: food.

After his many adventures in Kerala, Rajasthan and Punjab, Bourdain unearthed his true love for Indian food. In his wildly popular CNN travel show "Parts Unknown," Bourdain travelled to Punjab where he discovered the world of the most exceptional kulchas, fried fish and makki roti that he had ever sampled.

I bring to you our beloved Bourdain's take on Indian food:

1. Vegetarians Can Triumph

Bourdain has often gone on the record to say how his journey to Punjab opened his eyes to the eating lifestyle of vegetarians. In an interview to Vogue, he said:

"I’ve made much fun of vegetarians over the years and have been said, frequently, to “hate” them. This is not true........This is not the case in India, one of the few places on earth, where eating vegetarian is not a burden. In Punjab, wildly varying textures, huge selections, thrilling blends of spices and assertive, delicious flavours are always accompanied by wonderful, freshly-made breads."

Right after filming for the episode, Bourdain in several interviews said:

"Unlike some of the joyless vegetarian restaurants in my sad experience, vegetables here (Punjab) are actually spicy, all taste different, different textures, and served with extraordinarily good bread ... It's a whole different experience."

2. Busting the Indian & Street Food Myth

Indian food today is globally infamous for its high spice and fat content, often wreaking havoc on tummies across nations. Given that Indian food abroad was once limited to 'Chicken Tikka Masala' (not really Indian btw) and 'Tandoori Chicken,' Bourdain was one of the first food authorities to point out that more often than not, street food is the freshest stuff that is available out there. 

During a chat with CNN's Anderson Cooper, Bourdain explained to the world why most allegations against the Indian cuisine aren't exactly legitimate.

"Yes, there was an overwhelming likelihood that you will spend a little extra time on the thunderbucket. It (Indian food) won't kill you. It won't poison you. You are far more likely in my road experience to get ill at the hotel buffet. It's the killer, if one of my crew goes down, it's that breakfast buffet."

3. The Best Indian Food Can Be Found Only In India

Recognizing the dearth of authentic Indian eateries in the west, even in New York, Bourdain said to Vogue:

"Back home, we are really weak on street food, at least in Manhattan. Queens is another matter, there’s a lot of good street food there. New York does deli well....... But I can’t recommend any Indian restaurant in New York. I’ve been spoiled."

In 'Parts Unknown', he couldn't stop raving about the local specialities of Punjab:

"Want something good? Really, really good when in Amritsar? Something local, regional, iconically wonderful? You can't say you've had the Amritsar experience until you've had a little kulcha in your life ... a perfect little flavor bomb of wheat dough pressed against the side of a very hot clay oven, slathered with butter, and served with a spicy chole, a chickpea curry, on the side. Did I mention the butter?"

4. Indian Culture Is What You Expected And Much More

After his rendezvous with the country, Bourdain developed a soft spot for Indian cuisine and its people. For him, it has always been about the relationship that food shares with its communities, this is what made local fare unique boasting of a distinct character of its own. He understood the ethos of India and appreciated the nation more for it:

"In India—Punjab in particular—the thing you notice first, the thing that stays with you, is the completely understand why The Beatles would want to drop acid, come here, and stare at stuff. The colours burn right through your eyeballs and into your brain. No Maharishi needed! India is a country with a big heart. A traveller tip for India is to get used to people being really nice to you, it may take some time."

Anthony Bourdain was someone who made a conscious effort to reach across barriers through travel and adventure. A well-known advocate for minorities, he wielded the camera to expose the complex, lesser-known layers of the world, one step at a time with food and talk as his only weapons. His contribution to the culinary world is nothing short of legendary and today, he proves to be an inspiration to millions with his travel-findings and will be missed greatly.