#WeekendCurfew: Home chefs come to the rescue for Delhiites
The first weekend of 2022 is here, but looks like it’s going to be far from fun, for the city is going to be under #WeekendCurfew. To address the concern of rising Covid cases in the Capital, the imposition of weekend curfew will bring along restrictions such as closure of dine in services at restaurants, no house helps turning up, and a working Saturday for many Delhiites. As most residents struggle to finish the housework and office work alongside, city-based home chefs have stepped in to take care of Delhiites’ hunger pangs.
“I’ve just finished cooking two kgs of rajma, so you can imagine the number of bookings I have! If I get to counting, I have already 22 orders, and more requests are coming in as we speak,” says Alka Singhal, a Greater Kailash-based home chef, adding, “I had to hire extra help on weekdays to assist me in preparing meals for the weekend. Most people are going to be indoors and want to order in food. In fact, I have also got a pass made for my driver, so that he can make the deliveries during the curfew, instead of me coordinating with the delivery apps. People, who will be working from home, have to prepare chai, coffee sab... toh at least lunch and dinner banane se bachh jayein toh bartan bhi gande nahi honge! And during curfew, it gets very boring to be home, and food is something everyone looks forward to... Shayad isiliye zyada orders aa rahe hain.”
The feel good factor on seeing food gets escalated when there’s surety that the food is going to be hygienic, healthy, nutritious and budget-friendly (ranging from ₹200-400). And with home chefs, that’s a plus point. Kalkaji-based home chef Ashita Oberoi, whose meals are also on the verge of being booked out, says, “People cannot call their part time help when its weekend curfew, and want that at least food should be catered from outside. So not only are they booking for this weekend, but also for the coming weekend as some of them feel the rising cases mean it might get difficult to get a slot for home cooked food, if not ordered well in advance. Many are especially asking for healthy soups to be part of their meal, since it’s winter and staying warm helps keep Covid at bay.”
Some of these home chefs, who otherwise cook all round the year, are presently preferring to take orders from the Covid positive patients or families. “That’s what I started doing during the first Covid wave, and am doing that now as well,” says Sanhita D Sensarma, a corporate lawyer and cook from CR Park. She has been inundated with orders, and says, “I serve what I eat, and have put a nominal price for the meals I prepare, which are high in protein. As of now the meals I make are all going for Covid infected families and other frontline workers. I’m only making 25-30 meals per day, and I’m completely booked this weekend. This makes me feel that the Covid crises is back, and I knew the time has come for me to reach out and help those who our support at this time,” she says.
Singhal is also preparing food by “consulting dieticians, to come up with special meals that are high on immunity and also taste good”. And Oberoi adds, “For Covid infected families, we have full breakfast, lunch and dinner plans and they can book these for as many days they want. These bookings have, sadly, also come in this weekend.”
Author tweets @anjuri
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