Kundan Lal Gujral

Kundan Lal Gujral (c.1902 - 1997) was an Indian chef and restaurateur. He invented several Indian dishes which have since become popular worldwide, including butter chicken[2], tandoori chicken and dal makhani.[3][4][5][6] He was the founder of the restaurant chain Moti Mahal Delux.[7]

Kundan Lal Gujral
Kundan-Lal-Gujral.jpg
Borncirca 1902
Diedcirca 1997
EducationMatriculation
Spouse(s)Ram Prakash Devi
Culinary career
Cooking styleIndian cuisine
WebsiteMoti Mahal Delux

Early lifeEdit

Kundan Lal Gujral was born in c.1902 to Diwan Chand Gujral and Maya Devi in Chakwal District of Undivided Punjab, British India[8]. His only brother Chunni Lal died at the age of 18 due to Pneumonia. His father was a cloth merchant. Kundan Lal Gujral completed his matriculation in Pakistan. In c.1920 he started working at a small eatery called Moti Mahal, owned by Mokha Singh Lamba in Peshawar, Pakistan. He married Ram Prakash Devi and was blessed with a son, Nand Lal Gujral on 26 November 1935.

In 1947, during the partition of India he migrated with his family to India and settled in Delhi. He then went on to start an eatery by the name of Moti Mahal in Daryaganj, Delhi.

Known forEdit

Kundan Lal Gujral is known for the famous culinary inventions such as tandoori chicken, butter chicken and dal makhani[9][10][11][12].

The invention of tandoori chickenEdit

Gujral started as a chef in a small restaurant owned by Mokha Singh Lamba in Gora Bazaar, Peshawar, Pakistan[13]. He experimented by skewering yogurt marinated pieces of chicken and sticking them into the tandoor (which was previously used only for Breads). This experiment led to the famous dish tandoori chicken[14][15]. Tandoori chicken is another popular dish in Indian restaurants around the world.[16][17]

The invention of butter chickenEdit

To avoid the wastage of the leftover or not sold tandoori tikkas (marinated pieces of chicken cooked in a tandoor) and due to the lack of refrigeration facilities at that time, Gujral added tomato gravy with butter and cream to the tandoori tikkas to soften the chicken so that he can sell it again the other day. This culinary accident led to the famous butter chicken[18][19][20][21][22]. Today, butter chicken is the most popular curries in Indian restaurants around the world.[23][24][25][26]

The invention of dal makhaniEdit

Gujral is also known for inventing dal makhani which is a mildly spiced pulses curry made with the combination of tangy tomatoes, butter, and rich cream. This combination of mixed spices and dairy products is known as famous dal makhani.[27][28]

LegacyEdit

After having fled Pakistan, Kundan Lal Gujral settled in Delhi and opened a small dhaba (roadside eatery) to introduce Delhiites to the tandoori chicken.[29] He bought a small space in Daryaganj and set up Moti Mahal[30]. The place quickly proved popular and within a year Kundan Lal Gujral bought the adjoining area, turning his eatery into a 400 seat restaurant. Dignitaries like former Indian Prime Ministers, Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi[31][32][33], former Indian President Dr. Zakir Hussain, actors Raj Kapoor and Nargis, and Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev are among the famous patrons.

He served his iconic dishes, the butter chicken and the dal makhani here. Later in 1970's Kundan Lal son, Nand Lal Gujral expanded Moti Mahal in South Delhi to establish Moti Mahal Delux chain of restaurants. Currently, Kundan Lal Gujral’s grandson, Monish Gujral has instituted Moti Mahal Delux Management Services in 2003 by expanding the business into franchises across India. Today, it has grown from a small restaurant in Old Delhi to a modern eating chain with more than 150 franchises in India and worldwide[34][35][36].

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Welcome to IATO :- Indian Association of Tour Operators". iato.in. IATO.
  2. ^ "Recipe: Chef Monish Gujral shares the knowhow of their famed Signature Butter Chicken". www.indulgexpress.com.
  3. ^ "TBI Food Secrets: The Humble Origins of the Hugely Popular Butter Chicken". The Better India. 15 November 2016.
  4. ^ "5 facts about Kundan lal Gujral, the man who gave the world butter chicken&tandoori dishes". TNT-The NorthEast Today.
  5. ^ Chauhan, Divya (11 July 2016). "This Man Gave The World Butter Chicken, The Iconic Curry We Love". ScoopWhoop.
  6. ^ Sahni, Diksha (22 December 2011). "Moti Mahal: Delhi's Gastronomic Pearl". WSJ.
  7. ^ Nakra, Rachana (25 September 2009). "Utterly, butterly unbelievable". www.livemint.com.
  8. ^ Moti Mahal's tandoori trail. Roli Books. 5 January 2004. ISBN 9351940233.
  9. ^ "The History of Butter Chicken, Indian Cuisine's Most Loved Curry". NDTV Food.
  10. ^ "The modern dal makhani was invented by Moti Mahal".
  11. ^ Bhattacharya, Rupa; Trivedi-Grenier, Leena (2 August 2017). "Your Favorite Indian Takeout was Invented by a Refugee Fleeing Pakistan". Vice.
  12. ^ "Welcome to IATO :- Indian Association of Tour Operators". iato.in.
  13. ^ "The History of Tandoori Chicken".
  14. ^ Vellampalli, AuthorJaya. "The tale of Tandoori chicken". Telangana Today.
  15. ^ Behura, Monica (21 July 2008). "High on bar Be Cues". The Economic Times.
  16. ^ "Partition Changed India's Food Cultures Forever". The Wire.
  17. ^ "Tandoori chicken: inventor's grandson shares first-ever recipe". gulfnews.com.
  18. ^ "PressReader.com - Your favorite newspapers and magazines". www.pressreader.com.
  19. ^ Balasubramaniam, Chitra (10 August 2017). "A palatial offering". The Hindu.
  20. ^ Pitman, Isabelle. "Don't Miss Moti Mahal Restaurant". Culture Trip.
  21. ^ Helstosky, Carol (2014). The Routledge History of Food. Routledge. ISBN 9781317621126.
  22. ^ "Indian Dishes Named in the World's Best 100 Dishes". siliconindia.
  23. ^ Haksar, Nandita. "How intolerance has left India's culinary culture poorer". Scroll.in.
  24. ^ Sep 15, Mumbai Mirror. "Want your Naan dipped in alcohol?". BombayTimes.
  25. ^ "The unsaid story of Butter Chicken". DFT Blog. 1 May 2018.
  26. ^ "Dilli Diaries: The Butter Chicken Connect". HungryForever Food Blog. 10 May 2017.
  27. ^ February 21, Sourish Bhattacharyya. "Punjabi platter minus butter chicken". India Today.
  28. ^ "Who Invented the Dal Makhani". Little India: Overseas Indian, NRI, Asian Indian, Indian American. 30 January 2014.
  29. ^ "Tandoori chicken | dish". Encyclopedia Britannica.
  30. ^ "EatTreat". eattreat.in.
  31. ^ Mathur, Ajeet N. (2016). IIMA-Strategies for Future: Understanding International Business. Random House India. ISBN 9788184003673.
  32. ^ "Indra Gandhi with Mr Kundan Lal Gujral - Picture of Moti Mahal, New Delhi - TripAdvisor". www.tripadvisor.in.
  33. ^ "In Search of Lost Butter Chicken". National Geographic Traveller India.
  34. ^ "Moti Mahal, Daryaganj: The world-famous restaurant continues to live its legacy". The Indian Express. 3 February 2015.
  35. ^ "Forbes India Magazine - Print". www.forbesindia.com.
  36. ^ "Historic Moti Mahal enters kitchens with convenience food". Deccan Herald. 22 July 2010.

External linksEdit