It’s June – which means not only have we somehow already thundered halfway through the year, but that summer has started; happily heralding all sorts of Indian-accented events in London and elsewhere in England. So find your sunglasses, your mates and your mojo… but most of all this month, find time for Find Your Feet. The charity’s #CurryForChange campaign promises to make midsummer even more delicious…
Throughout June: #CurryForChange partner restaurants
Later this summer, Find Your Feet will entice home cooks to host their own spicy supperclubs – but ahead of that, why not check out the charity’s partner restaurants for a little inspiration? Try special dishes and donate at venues including Benares, The Regency Club, Cafe Spice Namaste, and Cinnamons Club, Kitchen and Soho.
Throughout June: A String of Pearls – Indian Ocean edition at Babur
For the second of its food festivals exploring the cuisines that India has influenced, South London’s Babur has teamed up with chef and Taste Mauritius founder Selina Periampillai to create a seafood-led spread featuring delicious dishes from Mauritius, the Maldives, and the Seychelles.
4th June: Capital Pop-up with Cyrus Todiwala
Any chance to feast on Cyrus Todiwala‘s cuisine is welcome, especially when the dinner is dished up in a historic private members’ club. The chef is going Goan for the occasion with dishes like prawn curry and traditional pork vindalho, whilst his Parsee roots are referenced with an apricot dessert.
Your Madrid-born host Dimple is part of one of the first generations of young Spanish-Indians, and her dual heritage will be put on the plate at this pop-up. Expect an arresting menu involving sizzling tandoor tastes, a celebratory chicken biryani, and sweet Spanish natillas.
A four-course Anglo-Indian feast brings Anita Anand’s Sophia to life – ‘a novel way to launch a novel’, one might say. The book tells the life story of nineteenth-century dispossessed Sikh princess Sophia Duleep Singh; the menu follows her journey through gastronomy. The author will be on hand to read and take questions.
12th & 18th June: That Hungry Chef Perfume: The Edible Scent
Hold your nose and you won’t taste much. Flavour perception is largely down to smell, an idea which enticed Pratap Chahal to build a supperclub around scent. Intriguing eats from a fragrant-oils-and-essences-infused menu include sandalwood monkfish, pea relish & saffron crispbread, and vetiver tartlet, melon, poppy & fennel seed brittle.
13th June: Surrey Spice Supperclub’s Serenading Summer
Think you can still spring into summer after a seasonal feast featuring a welcome drink, four starters, six to seven main dishes, three desserts AND masala chai? Then SSS’s seasonal supper is for you. Items like watermelon granita and mango shrikhand speak of sunshine – no matter what the weather brings.
13th & 20th June: Dhaba Lane’s Indian brunch
Aiming to bring an Indian-accented meal to the brunch bunch, Dhaba Lane’s menu is one to linger over. Take a seat in Arti and Upma’s quirky basement, and sip on a mango shake to awake your senses ahead of a spread including besan chilas, sweet shrikhand, and unorthodox bacon parathas.
Set foot in Maunika’s Indian Kitchen via the medium of a copy of her same-named cookbook and itching to know more of her authentic culinary secrets? This masterclass, covering curries, snacks and sweets, is followed by a five-course wine-soaked supper; and all guests get a (more than-)goody bag.
25th June: Alfred Prasad Supperclub at Kew Gardens
As part of Kew’s Spice Season supperclub series, Alfred will be creating five fine courses, each inspired by a single spice. Served up in The Orangery, the menu fuses the best of British produce, Indian techniques and flavours, and the chef’s trademark ingenuity.
25th June: The Spice Angel’s Delights from Maharashtra
Expect heavenly edibles from ‘Spice Angel’ Rani Pathare. The menu at this Surrey supperclub is informed by the host’s Mumbai upbringing; incorporating classic Bombay bites like batata vada alongside moreish mains of verdant shrimp dish, karandiche bhujane, and a regional ‘Sunday special’ chicken curry.
26th June: Khaadraas Club at Cafe Spice Namaste
At Cyrus and Pervin Todiwala’s place the welcome is always warm, but never more so than when one is there to partake of the ‘Parsee pigs’ dinners the duo hosts on a monthly basis. Expect heirloom recipes showcasing history and heritage, expect good cheer, and expect ample amounts of fine fare.
27th June: #ChaiParty
At #ChaiParty, a very authentic Indian menu meets a thoroughly British custom with incredibly edible results. From the first sip of lychee thumka to the last Parle G truffle you stuff’; via Bengali fish croquettes, Desi ribbon sandwiches, and kalakand cheesecake; you’ll be totally transported.
Various dates throughout June: The Spice Angel’s cookery classes
Whether you’re determined to master street eats like Bombay frankies and batata vada, Brindian curryhouse classics, or the art of home-made paneer to use in traditional vegetable dishes, ‘Spice Angel’ Rani has a class to suit and something devilishly good up her sleeve – catering amply to both veg and non-veg students.
6th June: Ren’s Kitchen’s Curry-in-a-Hurry class
This intimate North London half-day crash course is small on numbers and big on hands-on participation. Starting with a Spice Masterclass, you’ll also cook kebabs, bhuna chicken, and Goan fish – and learn to make rice to really entice. Love what you’ve learned? Good, because you’ll head home with enough food for two.
11th & 21st June: Jenius Social’s Indian Street Food class
Street food is social by its very nature, as are Jenius Social’s cooking classes. Led by the resident expert head chef, you’ll learn to handle knives (and yourself) in the kitchen, marinate meat like a master, and bring balance to your flavour combinations. The evening ends with a shared-feast-cum-spicy-social-mixer.
If you reckon there’s naan better than Indian breads, this is the cookery class for you. Chef Nishma Shah will make you into a master baker – or, rather, flatbread-flipper: teaching you to turn out perfect rotlis, coiled parathas, stuffed kulchas and more, along with a chickpea curry to accompany them all.
20th June: Ren’s Kitchen’s Dinner Party Delights class
Master the contents of a masala dabba with Ren’s renowned whistlestop tour through an Indian spice box before commencing the cooking part of this half-day course. Along with the host’s chicken-curry-with-the-most, you’ll get to savour saag aloo, vegetable pakoras, and chapattis – all created with your own fair hands and hard labour.
Until 27th June: Beyond Bollywood at The London Palladium
Mumbai-made and now London-landed, Beyond Bollywood is set to get a rave reception. The technicolour tale is structured around protagonist Shaily Shergill’s journey to India in order to revive her family’s failing theatre by staging show as splendid as the performance in which the story is depicted – written, choreographed and directed by Rajeev Goswami.
Until October: Bend it Like Beckham
It’s been over a decade since Gurinder Chadha’s Bend it Like Beckham hit the big screen. Thirteen years on, lucky fans are in for a treat – because the same story’s being portrayed on stage. The football-focused musical comedy’s score is a pitch-perfect fusion of Eastern and Western styles. You’ll have a ‘ball’ (#sorrynotsorry).
As beautiful as ballet and as theatrical as Shakespeare, centuries-old Keralite dance form kathakali is completely captivating. Intricate, multi-dimensional make-up transforms the performers into otherworldly characters who tell their tales through a series of powerful, poised and precise movements, set to moving music.
15th June: Bengal to Bethnal Green at Richmix
Richmix’s monthly concert series not only helps keep East London’s Bengali history alive, but also breathes new life into the culture. Steered by international tabla star Yousuf Ali Khan, performers from the Grand Union Orchestra fuse traditional folk songs with East End influences, reinterpreting them for a modern audience.
20th June: Ramadan Night at Richmix
10th June: Soumik Datta Arts Club Jam Night at Richmix
This Soumik Datta-curated, free-to-attend, genre-hopping monthly music mash-up at East London’s Richmix invites four fine upstarts to take to the stage and embark on their literal fifteen minutes of fame. Whether you discover the Next Big Thing or simply something new to you, it’s a top way to timepass with a few friends.
Lincolnshire-born, Ugandan-Asian-parented, London-based, all-round fabulous Meera Sodha is joining MasterChef winner Tim Anderson at the Divertimenti Culinary Salon to share all sorts of info from and about her cookbook, Made in India. Should you need more incentive, all attendees get a drink and a 10% discount.
- To read more about #CurryForChange, click here, here, here and here
- To read a review on Maunika Gowardhan’s ‘Indian Kitchen’, click here
- To read an interview with That Hungry Chef, click here
- To read all about Indian-style summer barbecuing, click here
- To read about the best Indian eats in London from the mouths of chefs and experts, click here
- To read about more cookery experiences at The Spice Monkey cookery school, click here