The Book


When Sonia Kapoor, a journalist working in a Hong Kong food magazine befriends Zubi, a shy and pretty Indian woman living in Hong Kong with her husband and child, she hopes to peel away the layers of fascinating stories about Zubi’s connection with food.

Hesitant at first, Zubi slowly opens up to Sonia, taking her to the Bangalore of her childhood and her mother Tahera’s simply cooked home food. Life lessons are learnt with the help of familiar dishes and Sonia realises that there’s more to Zubi than her love of biryani.

Zubi’s grandmother Ruqayya’s story takes them back to Vellore of the 1950’s, a time when Ruqayya’s blunt statement about hating to cook made her a stranger in her own house. But soon she learns to spin magic with sugar and begins to make a place for herself in the rigid matriarchal home.

Unable to communicate to those she loves, Zubi turns to food as a way of showering them with her affection. But Zubi realises that it is food that eventually helps her forge an identity for herself.

Sonia is drawn to the stories of these three women, a culinary journey that spans three generations but at its heart, a story of understanding needs, discovering identities, overcoming fears and above all, embracing love.