How Home Kitchens Sprouted Across India During COVID

India home kitchens food chef COVID cuisine region

Chingri Malai curry at Culinary Connections, New Delhi. Photo courtesy of Rishabh Gogoi. 

V Nata Raju’s house in East Delhi bustles with activity on a Sunday morning. “When Raju built this house, the kitchen was the epicentre”, his wife Punita, 56, tells VICE World News as she flattens moon-shaped discs of aata (dough) and spreads chilli powder over them to make Mirchi ka Paratha (traditional spiced flatbreads), a dish that has its roots in her family’s kitchen in the northern Indian state of Punjab. Meanwhile, 61-year-old Raju prepares Guntur Mutton curry, a spicy goat-meat stew; and Kodi Vepudu, a spicy chicken fry dish that Raju finishes up with a homemade powder made from dried lentils and chillies. These dishes are from his native state of Andhra Pradesh, a southern coastal state in the country, whose cuisine contrasts starkly with the north.

“Andhra Pradesh is the largest producer of red chilli

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Maryland Woman Loses 15 Pounds During Quarantine Cooking All Meals at Home Using This Service

For the past three months, the coronavirus pandemic has changed life as we knew it. Arguably, one of the places changed most by the virus has been our kitchens. With grocery stores facing supply chain shortages and the majority of restaurants closed or only offering carryout options, we’ve been forced to fend for ourselves and make most of our meals at home. It hasn’t been easy for anyone, but imagine cooking virtually every meal—breakfast, lunch, and dinner—for these past few months without having a dishwasher.

Not only has Lori Dominick, 54, of Green Belt, Maryland, done just that, but she also managed to lose weight in the process, thanks in large part to her Cooking Light Diet meal plans. She hasn’t just been making it work. She’s been thriving.

Lori Dominick
Lori Dominick

“It was always the first thing I looked for”

Dominick found the Cooking Light Diet a little over

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