Menu from Britain’s 1st Indian restaurant gets over USD 11k

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 04 Jun 2018 09:24:23


By Aditi Khanna,


A MOUTH-WATERING menu from Britain’s first Indian restaurant containing exclusive dishes like ‘Pineapple Pullaoo’ and ‘Chicken Currey’ has been sold here for USD 11,344.
Hindoostane Dinner and Hooka Smoking Club was established by Sake Dean Mahomed in 1809 at Portman Square in London. Mohamed, an Anglo-Indian traveller and businessman with roots in Bihar, who was among the very early migrants to England from India, had opened the restaurant to bring the taste of Indian food to the UK.

However, the venture did not last long, with Mahomed declaring bankruptcy in 1812.His restaurant struggled on as the ‘Hindostanee Coffee House’ under a new management for another 20 years, but finally disappeared in 1833. The menu include “Makee Pullaoo (1.1.0 pounds), Pineapple Pullaoo (1.16.0 pounds), Chicken Currey (0.12.0 pounds), Lobster Curry (0.12.0 pounds), Coolmah of Lamb/Veal (0.8.0 pounds), together with breads, chutneys and other exclusively Indian dishes.”

A rare volume of cookery manuscript containing the glimpse of the handwritten menu from the restaurant fetched 8,500 pounds (USD 11,344 or Rs 759,996) at a book fair here.

“There are plenty of printed and manuscript recipes for curries from the 18th century, but this book of receipts is the first known record of a priced menu from Britain’s first Indian restaurant – at a time when printed menus were rarely available from any type of restaurant,” said Brian Lake, partner at Jarndyce Antiquarian Booksellers in London, which sold the volume containing the menu at the ABA Rare Book Fair to an American institution last month.