Postcard from... Kolkata
There are surely grander places to eat in Kolkata, but there are few where the food is so delicious. Or where the simple pleasure of eating benefits such a worthy cause.
The All Bengal Women’s Union was established in 1932 to help and support victimised and vulnerable women. It provided homes, jobs and training for women from less fortunate backgrounds, of which Kolkata has always known large numbers.
One of the projects is the Suruchi canteen. Not only does this simple restaurant earn the charity some money, but it also provides practical training for the women who work and cook there. It has been featured in a number of television food shows.
One recent lunchtime I took a wheezing black and yellow taxi to the location at 89 Elliot Road. There was no menu but a waitress helped with the order – rice, lentils and the Bengali favourite bhekti (barramundi) steamed in banana leaves with mustard sauce. A soft drink and a traditional desert completed the meal.
The food took around ten minutes to arrive as I sat and listened to the noises from outside. It was delicious, particularly the fish.
The total came to Rs288 (about £2.80). I stepped outside feeling very well-fed and very privileged.
- 1 School kitchen manager 'fired from Colorado school for giving hungry students free lunches'
- 2 California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
- 5 Charles Kennedy 'had better judgement drunk than many sober politicians' says Ian Hislop
California man brutally beat 82-year-old Sikh grandfather he mistook for 'one of those people'
Amber Peat: Body found in search for missing 13-year-old who left house after argument with her parents
Alton Towers crash: Four guests seriously injured as Smiler ride carriages collide
Charles Kennedy dead: A guy once asked the Lib Dem leader who his favourite Muppet was and his letter response was wonderful
Gay teenager 'forced to have sex with his own mother' to 'cure' his homosexuality, campaigners in India say
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination
Migrants in Kos: Photos show real tragedy after Brits abroad complain of 'awkward' holidays
British tourists complain that impoverished boat migrants are making holidays 'awkward' in Kos
Michael Gove determined to scrap the Human Rights Act – even if Scotland retains it
Threat to scrap Human Rights Act could see UK follow Nazi example, warns UN official
Church of England 'one generation away from extinction' after dramatic loss of followers
£26000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A successful national service f...
£15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an opportunity to join ...
£17500 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We currently require an experie...
£50000 - £100000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Partner Manager is required ...