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If you’ve eaten at one of Biju’s Little Curry Shop’s two locations, you know just how fresh and flavorful founder Biju Thomas’ cooking can be. Now, you can recreate that culinary magic in your own home kitchen using Thomas’ new line of South Indian spices.
This month, Thomas released six varieties—Chili Lime Finishing Salt, Toasty Garam Masala, Vindaloo XX Blend, Madras Curry, Soup & Sambar X Hot, and Kerala Golden Turmeric— online, and at his two restaurants. (They’ll also be available at Whole Foods Market in the near future). But the spice line is simply Thomas’ first push into the retail realm: A collection of simmer sauces, as well as various snacks such as chips and roasted chickpeas, are on the way. All are rooted in the same bold flavors the chef is known for, and they’ll boast the same “clean-eating” ethos. The products are Paleo-diet friendly, vegan, and in the process of being Kosher certified.“I really put a lot of thought into this to make sure it’s good for people,” Thomas says.
What really sets them apart, however, is the quality of the spices themselves. Thomas is sourcing from small farmers in his native Kerala and the surrounding region, often referred to as India’s spice coast. The spices are steam-sterilized rather than irradiated (which preserves the flavors), and then ground and blended in Boulder. As Thomas says, the spices are geared towards serious home cooks, while the simmer sauces and snacks will offer something quicker and more convenient for those with less time to spend in the kitchen.
That’s not all: While Thomas pulled his two Whole Foods outposts of Biju’s Little Curry Shop, he will host frequent pop-ups at various Whole Foods locations in support of the retail line. He also has plans to franchise Biju’s in New Orleans, Dallas, San Francisco, Chicago, and Washington, D.C.
Look for the spices, which retail at $7.99, at Biju’s Curry shop locations, online, and in Whole Foods Market very soon. The simmer sauces and snacks will roll out early next year.