Ahh, Dishoom. A restaurant where the queue to get in is as much a part of the experience as the bacon naan roll. The five locations in London (Shoreditch, Kensington, King’s Cross, Carnaby and Covent Garden) and a further two in Edinburgh and Manchester celebrate the welcoming culture of the old Irani cafés of Bombay (now Mumbai), and the food found all over the city. It has become the go-to fancy brunch place for students and celebrities alike, thanks to the 'faded elegance' of the decor, mission to be equal parts stylish and inclusive with their clientele and, obviously, the delicious food.
This mingling of people from varying backgrounds is the whole point, as the founders Shamil Thakrar, Kavi Thakrar and Naved Nasir write in the introduction to their new cookbook, Dishoom: "From Bombay With Love": "As we deepened our knowledge of the Irani cafés and their role in Bombay’s civic culture, we became increasingly conscious that breaking down barriers was important to us too. We love serving you dishes cooked in Parsi, Muslim, Hindu and Christian traditions, which all jostle on our tables for space."
So we’re delighted that they're bringing out their first cookbook, making the food so many people queue up for even more accessible. Who wouldn’t want to cook a traditional Bombay feast in their own home? Think sweet, spicy chai, south-Indian-style prawn moilee, and the kind of okra fries that make the often-slimy vegetable addictive.
Ahead, we’ve published our three favourite recipes from the book so you can avoid standing in the rain this weekend, and bring something special to your kitchen.