On 4th June 2019, our adrenaline began to pump up as we approached Kapadia residence, perched in a picturesque location of Colaba. All this while, I had been hearing such ‘wonderful’ things about TBK that I was overwhelmed by the fact that I was finally getting to meet the mother-son duo. Which is why, the moment I knew I was flying into Mumbai in the week of Eid, the first thing I did was to check with the Bohri Kitchen on their availability. In all honesty, I couldn’t think of a better way of bringing in Eid 2019. Luckily, TBK agreed to host us on the Bohri Eid which, made this lunch, even more, memorable.
It’s not surprising that TBK has got the entire Mumbai drooling over their Mutton Keema Samosas, Shahi rolls, Raan and every single item featured on the Bohri Thaal. A concept that came to life the day, Munaf Kapadia decided to quit his desk job with Google to launch his mom Nafisa Kapadia’s food enterprise. Well, we are glad he did, or how else, would any of us get to indulge in this extraordinary culinary experience? Although, what’s quite amazing about this gastronomy tour is that, ever since, the opening of this enterprise, Kapadia’s have taken it upon themselves to feed their guests before the family. With that hospitality and warmth, it was only natural for TBK to become everyone’s favourite in a short period of time. Believe you me, meeting this inspirational family, by all means, is a privilege!
On this Bohri Eid, TBK allowed me to enjoy the pleasure of the authentic Bohri Thaal that seamlessly induced a food coma during the well-organised dining process. That included TBK tantalising our taste buds with the most authentic and noteworthy Bohri culinary spread that we could have ever had. When we sat down to savour the Thaal, Mariyam, our host for the day, guided us through each dish that was a part of the process. Starting with a zesty welcome drink – the Rose Sherbet infused with sabza, which is this refreshing cooler that helps you get away from Mumbai’s chaotic lifestyle. The real dining experience, however, kicked off with a pinch of salt and conversations about the traditions of the Bohri Thaal.
Mariyam quickly explained that salt, not only, activates saliva but also builds an appetite that you need to finish this Thaal. During this conversation, sides were placed on the Thaal one after another, including lemons, Green and Khajur Chutney with Jaggery, and Pineapple raita. This is when Mariyam told us that a typical Bohri meal is made up of three elements, namely, Kharaas – the savoury starters, Jaman – the main course and Meethas – the dessert.
For Kharaas, the savoury starters, we were served Smoked Mutton Keema Samosas with lemon bites, Shahi Chicken Cheese Rolls with green chutney and 48-hour cooked Raan in red gravy. The lemon here enhances the smoky flavour of the keema samosas, so, the trick is to keep squeezing lemon juice on the keema samosas while you eat them.
The Shahi Chicken Cheese Rolls, on the other hand, are more like the Indianized version of swiss rolls, except these are savoury. I tried the mouth-melting rolls, with both the green and the Khajur chutney and they taste so different with those spicy condiments.
The last of the savoury appetisers was the 48-hour cooked Raan in red sauce. Garnished with finely grated potato chips, this one was my star dish of the day. (Alongside the Mutton Samosas, of course) Mariyam shared with us that the original tradition requires everyone to put their fingers together inside the tender Raan and then pull out a piece together and eat it. This dish is so ‘succulent and juicy’ that you can easily pierce through it with your finger. Besides, the very custom inspires mealtime togetherness and I can’t think of a better ‘food-bonding’ activity, whether it be, families or the corporate team outings.
Next up, was the Sheer Kurma from the Meethas section! This was a ‘surprising-treat,’ as we usually eat desserts towards the end of a meal. Then again, as they say, “Life is uncertain, so eat the dessert first.” However, if it weren’t for Mariyam, we wouldn’t have known how important it is to keep changing the palates, from savoury to sweet, to keep building the appetite for the next course. Our Sheer Kurma was loaded with generous amounts of dry fruits and despite, being a dessert, it wasn’t diabolic. Just perfectly sweet for us to relish the true flavours of the dry fruits and the other ingredients.
Refreshing the palette did work for us, as we were more than ready to dig into our main course which featured a unique Kadhi Khichdi combination. Around the same time, we were also served the Jal Jeera Soda for easy digestion. Finally, the Bohri Thaal experience concluded with ice cream and Magai paan and oh boy, we can’t wait to return for more. All in all, it was a wholesome experience that I can’t eloquently put into words. All I can say is, if you love food then you have to be here, to know how it’s done the right way.
If we made you drool with our story, then book yourself a slot for their next dining experience right away. You may book this “Bohri Thaal” dining experience throughout the year, as long as, you are a group of 10 to 35 people. TBK organises lunch every weekend that is priced at INR 1700 per person. For independent experiences, order a take away from their kitchens which are present at 5 locations in Mumbai. Or order, a Travelling Thaal where TBK brings their home dining experience to the location of your choice.