Mahrukh But, a Pakistani-born woman who is Scotland’s first female Asian head chef, has been declared Chef of the Year at this year’s Scottish Curry Awards in Glasgow. Mahrukh is the head chef at Bukharah, an Indian restaurant in Glasgow’s four-star Lorne Hotel. The restaurant won the top restaurant title at the awards function, held last week.
Mahrukh, who hails from Pakistan, also has the distinction of being her home country’s first female head chef. She worked in top star hotels before shifting to the Sheraton in Dubai. She joined Bukharah in 2009.
Mahrukh said: “I am delighted to have been awarded Chef of the Year. Working at the Bukharah has allowed me to be creative in my cooking. I enjoy being able to come up with new healthy food dishes using fresh Scottish produce. The restaurant is part of a boutique hotel and not a global chain; it’s unique and to me, that’s something special.”
Her cuisine is a combination of cooking traditions in both India and Pakistan, and she says she has brought her own imaginative style in home cooking to the Bukharah with traditional dishes from India. Bukharah owner Archie Sharif told Scotland’s
newspaper: “The Bukharah offers something different to the curry connoisseur. It’s healthy Indian cuisine, exactly what it says on the door — home cooking at its best.”
Glasgow kept its title of the country’s curry capital with the Banana Leaf, another Indian restaurant, winning the best takeaway award.