These five brands have emerged as survival tools in Karachi as they’ve stepped in to provide either the ingredients or the key to culinary pleasure.
This lockdown has been chipping away at our senses, especially our sense of pleasure, as the coronavirus pandemic has taken away almost everything that ever brought us joy; time spent with family and friends, dining out, traveling, dressing up for festivities, basically all social activities. The one indulgence, however, has been food and the lockdown has turned everyone and their pet chihuahua into a verified chef. The internet has been flooded with cooking videos but what’s tickled our taste buds, more than the perfect cheese and steak sandwich, are five brands that have emerged as survival tools as they’ve stepped in to provide either the ingredients or the key to culinary pleasure.
Bloom Agritech, available at supermarkets all over Karachi but also delightfully online for deliveries these days, has been a source of green, healthy and sustainably grown local produce that you normally don’t get at grocers and vegetable marts. The plump and sweet cherry tomatoes, the lush green and purple salad leaves and herbs, the tiny tri-colour ‘tinkerbell’ peppers and so much more has fortified the home-cooking experience. Unfortunately, many of the ingredients are often out of stock, but one can adjust that expectation knowing that Bloom is growing and harvesting all year round, that too with a greenhouse system that saves the environment by using 70 per cent less water. Check it out at www.bloomagritech.pk
This is a Godsend for cheese lovers! It’s a small enterprise and the people at Karacheese take orders on their Instagram page, but the selection and the quality is so worth it. From hard cheeses like Cheddar and Pepper Jack to Emmental, Gruyere, Parmesan, Halloumi and fresh Mozarella, there’s all this and more for your Italian recipes or your adventurous cheeseboard. Sold per 100 grams, the price can vary from 250 to 500 rupees, but the quality and freshness makes up for it. Made from unique cheese cultures, Karacheese offers an authentic experience and hits the spot if you’re looking for the real cheesy deal. To see their menu and order, you can find Karacheese on Instagram.
With people minimizing human interaction and subsequently avoiding trips to the grocers, one has been on the look-out for fruit & vegetable home delivery that can be trusted. It’s reassuring to know when your green grocer has an understanding of seasonal produce and quality. Fresh Basket, physically present in Badar Commercial but efficiently available online has been a great source of fruit, berries, vegetables needed for western cooking and roasting (they usually have fresh rosemary and dill) and a fine selection of nuts and super seeds. The shop is a little magical emporium and you may find something you haven’t been able to find anywhere else. It helps if you have visited the shop at least once, before shifting to online deliveries, so you know what all they may have. Check them out at www.freshbasket.com.pk
You can smell the soil when your vegetables get to you within four hours of being harvested; grown responsibly and as organically as possible with a clean water supply, the list that Sungold Organic supplies will guarantee that your cooking experience does pick up extra freshness and earthiness. Delivering all over Karachi, the list varies from day to day and may require a little planning and pre-ordering, but comes highly recommended for kitchen staples that you would also want to be as pure as possible. A great source of desi eggs and chickens, mutton and more, visit their website to see what to order and feel safe in what you put in your system. A permanent feature at the weekly Farmer’s Market, Sungold can also (and conveniently) be sourced at www.sungoldorganic.com.
Slice of Life
Last but not least, what would life be without bread? While there are many options for artisanal breads all over the city, Slice of Life has emerged as an accessible and cost effective option. The little bakery sits in Badar Commercial but the home delivery system is a better option these days. Whether you chose the everyday staple bran and multigrain bread, or opt for burger buns, sour dough, French bread, tea cakes, rusks, or more, Slice of Life is a great source of all things carb. Find realsliceoflife on Facebook and say goodbye to carb control!