On 28th October Ravinder Bhogal, Chef Patron of Jikoni will celebrate Jikoni’s second birthday with a special charity event – The Samosa Sisterhood. She will be joined in the kitchen by leading female chefs Anna Hansen (The Modern Pantry), Lily Jones (Lily Vanilli), and Sabrina Ghayour (author of Persiana, Sirocco and Feasts) who will each make a special samosa for the occasion. Jikoni’s kitchen table downstairs will also seat a sisterhood of friends, relatives and volunteers who will be making samosas throughout the day.
The event is inspired by Ravinder’s fond childhood memory of making samosas with her band of aunties who would convene at her mother’s house to gossip, drink tea and make 500 or so samosas in one sitting. “These were the most happy and reassuring moments of my life. I would skulk about listening to the grown up chatter of the women who made the samosas with such skill and attention to detail. Despite the jumble of hands making them, they were all uniformly perfect, and each one filled with such care and love – I haven’t eaten a samosa that tasted as good since. I am hoping we can replicate that communal spirit on our birthday with a group of women I admire so much”says Ravinder.
Each samosa will be reflective of Jikoni’s mixed heritage cuisine inspired by flavours from Asia, East Africa, The Middle East and Britain and will include Ravinder’s Clove smoked Venison samosa with beetroot chutney, Anna’s Turmeric spiced potato, cauliflower, smoked ricotta and currant samosas, Spiced chicken with fenugreek and barberry samosa with preserved lemon ketchup from Sabrina, and Lily Vanilli’s sticky coconut samosas with Chilli Mango.
To accompany the samosas, house-made chai will be free flowing, and Ravinder has designed a banquet of dishes including favourites such as Bhel Puri, Handvo (Spicy Lentil Cake) with Coriander Chutney and, Makai Paka (East African Indian Corn on the Cob in a Peanut Sauce) Poha Bateta and Chilli Paneer to keep guests fortified. To mark the occasion, artist Karen Hsu of the Pom Pom Factory will design a special window installation of handmade paper samosas filled with flowers.
Central to Jikoni’s ethos and Ravinder’s own commitment to helping the wider community in which the restaurant sits, the celebration will be in support of the Women & Girls Network, a free service which supports women in London who have experienced, or are at risk of experiencing, violence. 100% of proceeds from the Samosa Sisterhood will be donated to the charity.
‘Last year we celebrated our first birthday by raising over £7000 for Action Against Hunger. I wanted to celebrate our second birthday with the same sentiment. Women and Girls Network is a charity that is very close to my heart and I am in complete awe of the incredible and vital support they give so many women. They are our motivation for the day, and to support them is a complete honour’ says Ravinder.