The lockdown has affected the restaurant business, but it’s given wings to home chefs. With restaurants shut, several home chefs sprung into action and started taking orders. From local cuisine to continental and northeastern, there’s a lot to look forward to from the home kitchens.
Since the beginning of May, Maria D’souza from Santa Cruz has started delivering home made Goan food like chicken xacuti, roast, sausage pulao, and a few snacks and desserts. Her son Alyster, who helps her run her brand Amelia’s Homemade Delights says, “My mom makes amazing food and people always appreciated it. So we thought we could actually sell it, to supplement our income.”
Cloud kitchens set up to help women get a source of income are also ensuring people around get delicious home cooked food delivered. Three weeks ago, Sameera Khan kicked off Potluck Goa, an initiative to help mothers of Goa deliver their home cooked food made from recipes passed on from generations. “We started with a limited edition Sunday menu, with six women. They cook theplas, biryani, haleem, a few desserts and pickles which we help them deliver,” says Sameera, who runs this with help from friends.
Another Panaji-based cloud kitchen, The Local Kitchen Co+Operative, is run by Mackinlay Barreto and Kevin Mascarenhas. They have local recipes like cafreal, vindaloo, sorpotel, chorico pulao, a few Indian delights and desserts. “The food is cooked in the local kitchens of around eight women between 35 and 65 years old. They have learnt cooking from their grannies and moms, and not cookbooks. They do not use any packet masalas or pastes and it is as authentic as possible,” says Mackinlay.
Home chefs have started making and delivering comfort food too. Zeba Nazir from Margao has resumed her biryani delivery. She makes chicken and paneer biryani, recipes of which have been passed on to her by her mom. Shaeen Gomes from Panaji has started baking profiteroles at her parents bakery for the last few weeks and they have become instant hits among locals. She makes them on order, in different flavours — fresh cream, mango and chocolate. “The mangoes for the filling are plucked from the tree in our garden,” she says.
Sabrina Khuranna has kicked off her home kitchen during the lockdown. She makes a variety of continental, Punjabi, Bengali, Northastern, Maldivian and Sri Lankan cuisine on order at MAH: Made At Home. “I used to make on order occasionally, but it has taken off during the lockdown, since the word has spread.”
Moumita Sen from Saligao, who runs Moka Desserts has started delivering too. She says, “I’ve been taking orders for a year now, but I had to commence deliveries during lockdown, since I realised people were unwilling to step out and they’re happier to get it delivered.” Similarly, Actress Megha Gupta who’s been experimenting with cooking has started making hummus on orders and delivering it.