Welcome to the family
Head chef and mama bear, Sunita, was born in a small town in Punjab, India. She moved to Manchester, UK with her parents at the age of 4. Her father was an engineer and quickly gained employment at the time. With dad on the ground now working, Sunita, her mum and baby sister boarded a terrifyingly large plane in 1964 and after the longest flight, landed in a new language, time zone, weather, fashion and culinary experience that took some getting used to!
Sunita’s mum, Sudesh, loved cooking. And that love was poured into dishes like saffron dall (lentils), creamy saag (spinach) and aloo gobi (potatoes and cauliflower), accompanied by a mix of punjabi pickles and a perfectly round chapati. Sunita would soon learn how to replicate her mother’s tasty dishes, taking them into her own marital home.
Now in Newcastle upon Tyne and with her own growing family to feed, the house would be constantly filled with the smell of the tastiest food. Eating was a real occasion. The most humble plate of mushrooms transformed into a feast fit for a Punjabi king! The plainest looking yoghurt decorated with textures and colours you may never have seen. No dish was boring and every dish was wolfed down at the speed of light by her 6 children. Food wasn’t about looking pretty. It was the warm delight of a bite of crunchy chaat, covered in cool raita, sweetened with a sauce heralding back from centuries ago. Sunita’s little piglets loved their food, so of course after dinner, a warm bowl of indian rice pudding or a sweet jalebi was well received. Room always found for a bedtime lassi or cinnamon chai!
All grown up and branching out in their lives, Sunita’s children have individually over the years, had the pleasure of making their way back to the motherland. Punjabi food is a very wholesome affair. To turn down food an insult, even if full! In Punjab, food is the centre of life. To feed you is a pleasure and to be fed, an absolute joy. Hungry? Eat. Broken heart? Eat. Headache? Eat. The solution to life’s problems and demonstration of love.
The road to Karma Kitchen
Three years ago, after regular requests from family and friends, Sunita decided to bring her food to the public. With no restaurant experience at all, just her passion for the food of her homeland in its original, flavoursome form, Sunita opened the doors to a small venture called Karma Kitchen; a 100% plant based Indian food restaurant and home delivery business in the city she had lived in since 18 years old.
Since that time, she has been joined on her journey by two of her daughters: Meera and Reema. With a love for the food and the good that could be done by a business that matches their values-both sisters believe in their mother and the mission of Karma Kitchen. They take immense pride in being part of an enterprise that brings good, honest, tasty food to tables, now all over the country, with a sprinkling of Punjabi love.