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Updated: March 20, 2013 17:49 IST

Culinary solace for the homesick

Madhavi Shivaprasad
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Comfort food: Chulha tiffin services in Kodihalli delivers to its 250 customers in the Indiranagar and Koramangala region. Photo: S. Mohan Prasad
Comfort food: Chulha tiffin services in Kodihalli delivers to its 250 customers in the Indiranagar and Koramangala region. Photo: S. Mohan Prasad

Chulha tiffin services in Kodihalli delivers staple north Indian lunches and dinners to its customers

“When I first came into the city from Delhi, I was a bachelor having to live by myself and I was desperate for some home food. I used to share a flat with another friend of mine and we had employed a cook. It was through this, purely by luck, that I had the idea of beginning a full-fledged tiffin service. In 2008, I began catering to the needs of several others like me,” says Nishant Gupta, the owner of Chulha tiffin service in Kodihalli.

Chulha now provides lunch as well as dinner to both corporate offices as well as individual homes, catering to areas in and around Indiranagar and Koramangala.

Early start

At Chulha, which functions out of a one-bedroom house, preparations for the day ahead begin at 7 a.m., and lunch is ready by noon. “It takes about half an hour to get the lunch carriers ready with the food, after which it is delivered,” says manager Prahlad Das. Chulha serves around 250 customers at present.

Common combos

Their menu consists of the most commonly preferred vegetarian and non-vegetarian north Indian dishes, including rice or chapattis.

Chulha delivers on all days except Sundays.

While on most days they have phulkas or chapattis, they make aloo, onion and radish parathas four times a week.

Among their rice items are biryani, fried rice, pulao and khichdi. Pooris and sweets such as gulab jamun, laddoo and payasam are made twice a week.

Happy customers

Customers are largely happy with Chulha for their reliable services and affordable prices.

Deepak Joshi, an IT professional from Koramangala, has been their client for two years. “It was difficult for me to find a place that was affordable on a daily basis as well as hygienic. I found Chulha through Facebook when I was looking for tiffin services in Bangalore. I only order dinner and on most days, I come home late, but I find that the food is always delivered on time even before I return from work,” he says.

Ashok Chako, another customer, also appreciates them for their punctuality.

“By 1 p.m. the food arrives at my place, and they haven’t given me cause to complain in that area so far. Even when I have to order for more than two sometimes, giving them notice of just an hour or two, they deliver the food just as quickly. But, yes, when the quantity of food ordered is more than usual, there have been instances when it has fallen short for us. But then they themselves realise it is not enough and they make sure to pack sufficient food the next time,” he says.

The downside of fixed menus

The one thing the customers would like, however, is for the menu to become slightly more varied. “They have a weekly menu which is fixed. The quality of food is not consistent. Sometimes it is really tasty, and at others it is average. The homely feel is certainly there, but some improvement is needed,” says Ashok.

‘Feedback welcome’

However, Chulha is open to such suggestions. “We have a Facebook page on which customers regularly give feedback, which we take into consideration,” says Nishant. “In addition, our staff call up customers regularly to ask them for feedback,” he adds.

(Chulha is at 27, 80 Feet Road, HAL 3rd Stage, Kodihalli. Call 988664750 or visit www.chulha.co.in.)

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