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This confidence, in fact, grows out of one of the 10 "Samosa Gyans" that Kapadia offers in the book: More than failure be afraid of not trying your best. Pixabay

This is a classic chicken and egg situation: a son seemingly sets out to cure his mother of her obsession with “saas-bahu” soaps on TV and focuses on her culinary skills but instead finds his own feet as an entrepreneur!”The greatest irony of all is that the world believes that TBK was born out of a son’s desire to help his mother realize her dreams. While it may have started out that way, it really became about my mother helping me realize my own,” Munaf Kapadia, founder of the hugely successful The Bohri Kitchen that in five years, hosted close to 4,000 home diners on weekends and at its peak in 2019 was delivering 1,000 biryanis a day across Mumbai, writes in “How I Quit Google To Sell Samosas” (HarperCollins).

“Over the last five years of being CEO of TBK, personally and professionally. I have grown by leaps and bounds. Mom, who has won awards and achieved semi-celebrity status with a growing list of fans in Bollywood (serenaded by Shaan on her birthday!) food and politics, hasn’t changed one bit.


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“Today, when I look at Mom, she seems as content and satisfied as she’s always been. I’d like to think that TBK has done something for her too. I hope it gave her a sense of fulfillment and joy. I hope it made her look forward to her days in a way that only having a purpose or being brilliant at doing something makes you,” Kapadia writes. TBK had come to a grinding halt after a nationwide lockdown was declared on March 24, 2020, because of Covid-19 and “we’re just about getting back on our feet” a year later, Kapadia writes, exuding confidence about the future.

“I do believe that the brand that we created because of a fight with Mom over a TV remote can survive a global pandemic. After all, #BOHRIFOODCOMA (the state in which some guests found themselves in after a meal at the TBK Home Dining Experience) is considered a pretty dangerous affliction by itself.” Through this book, I hope to inspire you. I hope to make you laugh a little and I hope that you take away this, if nothing else – if I can do it, so can you,” he maintains.

This confidence, in fact, grows out of one of the 10 “Samosa Gyans” that Kapadia offers in the book: More than failure be afraid of not trying your best. Central to the TBK Home Dining Experience is the Bohra Thaal that Kapadia (then still with Google but quit soon after) and his mother devised. This is how it works: The average thaal is a large steel platter three feet in diameter placed slightly elevated on a square cloth mat called a safra around which seven or eight guests are seated, either cross-legged or somewhere between cross-legged and a padmasana.


The next up is the jaman aka main course – it could be either Kaari Chawal or a Bohra Dam Biryani. Pixabay

Once all the guests arrive, the pre-plated thaal is placed before them with condiments that include pudina chutney, pineapple, and boondi raita, aam chunda (a sweet raw mango preserve with chili powder, kokum aloo, Bhavnagri nirchis, aamba halad (two types of fresh turmeric and black pepper pickled in vinegar) and a bowl of lemon wedges.The food is served on the thaal course-wise, starting with a kharaas or a savoury item such as TBK’s now-famous Smoked Mutton Kheema Samosas. This may be followed by a Nariyal Kebab (tiny vegetarian kababs stuffed with mashed potato, spring onions, and desiccated coconut).

Eating the samosa is an art in itself. You bite off the top and squeeze in some lime juice and green chutney to get the full flavor of the smoked mutton kheema – an experience that invariably has guests asking for more! The kharaas are followed by a meethas or sweet dish (to help balance the gut), for instance, a Malai Khaja, a kind of Bohra Baklava. Then comes the more serious food like the Raan in Red Masala – one kilo plus a leg of a goat marinated for over two days and cooked on a high-pressure flame for a couple of hours.

The next up is the jaman aka main course – it could be either Kaari Chawal or a Bohra Dam Biryani. Next up is the hand-churned Sancha Ice Cream made in a wooden barrel with a steel cylinder fitted inside, followed by a Gundi Paan. The aim is to ensure that “when someone is done with the meal and leaves our home, they do so not only with full stomachs but full hearts and minds as well.


On the comeback trail since January, TBK is currently servicing from its Worli kitchen five to 20 pre-orders a day depending on the day of the week. Pixabay

“The world’s best brands and businesses are built on authenticity, creativity, and their ability to give customers something unique.”Now, imagine if you knew nothing about our culture and eating practices, and you were taken through the whole experience of eating homemade Bohra fare in the home of a Bohra family as their guests. Wouldn’t that be an experience worth hosting every weekend,” Kapadia writes.

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“Since the inception of TBK, we have gone from strength to strength where the brand’s PR, outreach, and visibility were concerned. I have made the cover of Forbes India, featured in Conde Naste Traveller and Entrepreneur magazines. TBK is a two-time winner of the Times Food Award. Mom has been recognized as the Best Home Chef of the Year (2018) by the Indian Restaurant Congress. We won the rising star award at Mid-Day’s The Guide Restaurant Awards 2018; Mom was thrilled to receive the award from Shilpa Shetty Kundra, one of her favorite Bollywood actors,” Kapadia writes. And, with the Home Dining Experience on firm ground, it was time to expand TBK’s reach with a second kitchen at Worli for the delivery business and five cloud kitchens in the suburbs that were each clocking 200 biryani deliveries a day – collectively doing business of Rs 35 lakh a month by August 2019.

On the comeback trail since January, TBK is currently servicing from its Worli kitchen five to 20 pre-orders a day depending on the day of the week. The extensive Ramzan special menu includes an Iftar Meal Box, Haleem with Khammi Roti, Mutton Paya with Sheermal Bread, Raan in Red Masala, and, of course, Smoked Mutton Kheema Samosas.As Kapadia puts it in one of his “Samosa Gyans”: I might not be a billionaire, but I know I’ve achieved enough to inspire you to get off your seat. (IANS/JC)


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The aim of the book is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

By Siddhi Jain

Delhi-based author Pritisha Borthakur is set to release her new book, 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories'. The 1,404-word children's book was put together to address a new kind of societal debacle in the family system. The author says the aim is to teach children that families can exist in different forms, and show them how to accept the diversity in family backgrounds.

The author who named the book after her twin sons -- Puhor and Niyor -- is a parent who has seen and heard the tales of ridicule and discrimination suffered by many in India and beyond. She says the book is an artistic illustration for kids that details how different families can live and coexist. Whether it's children with two dads or two moms, children with a single dad or single mom, and even multiracial family units, Borthakur's book teaches love, understanding, and compassion towards unconventional families.

Beyond race, gender, color, and ethnicity which have formed the bases for discrimination since the beginning of time, this book aims to bring to light a largely ignored issue. For so long, single parents have been treated like a taboo without any attempt to understand their situations; no one really cares how or why one's marriage ended but just wants to treat single parents as villains simply for choosing happiness and loving their children.

Homosexual parents, a relatively new family system, is another form that has suffered hate and discrimination for many years. Pritisha emphasizes the need to understand that diversity in people and family is what makes the world beautiful and colourful. 'Puhor and Niyor's Mural of Family Stories' is a firm but compassionate statement against all forms of discrimination on the bases of sexual identity, gender, race, and even differences in background

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