CHENNAI: Fresh, nutrient-dense peanuts, sprouted, roasted and ground with a few other ingredients to make a tasty health-mix; poondu pottukadalai powder, with deep savour notes, mixed with dollops of ghee and hot rice for a quick, perfect mid-day meal, and an array of other condiments ranging from poondu milagai powder to paruppu powder — 25-year-old food technologist Sandhya Subramanian’s venture, Sukha, packs a punch with its collection of zesty podis.
For the entrepreneur, who spent the last three years in the food industry, understanding its mechanisms and nuances, the idea to start a food venture was natural. “I primarily worked on ensuring and controlling the quality of food and beverages. So, I understand how important it is to deliver food that is not just tasty but healthy, too. It was this experience and school of thought that led me to start Sukha, which will provide people with lip-smacking unadulterated homemade podis for their daily consumption. The recipes are from my family’s kitchen. I wanted to take these wholesome recipes and products to everyone,” she shares.
Sukha currently prepares 19 variants of podis including idli podi, ellu podi, karuvepilai podi, sambar podi, rasam podi, jeera powder, pepper powder, coriander powder, biriyani masala, garam masala, turmeric powder and chilli powder. “The turmeric and chilli powder are sourced from farmers in Salem, who cultivate and harvest the spices. The cultivation doesn’t involve the use of any chemicals or pesticides. Through the venture, I also want to provide a livelihood for the farmers during such trying times,” she says.
The venture has an FSSAI certification and will soon include traditional snacks, pickles and beverages in its menu. “For those who live in hostels and PGs, for those who don’t have time to stand in the kitchen to roll out full-course meals, such podis will be of great value. My grandmother often shares anecdotes of how back in the day, when guests used to visit unannounced, such podis came to the rescue. It’s a simple yet very tasty staple. To provide authentic taste, all the ingredients are handpicked. We stay rooted and use traditional methods of preparation. Some of the ingredients are allowed to sprout and then grounded and packed. The process takes a minimum of seven days. There are no added colours, flavours or preservatives,” she details.
Sandhya hopes to adopt a farmland and include a subscription-based vegetable delivery model under Sukha’s umbrella. “Though the label ‘organic’ is increasingly becoming popular, many products in the market are not authentic. What’s more unfortunate is that the middlemen make more profit than the farmers themselves. So going forward, I want to be able to help farmers get maximum profit in any way possible while enabling customers to get a taste of natural products,” she says.The podis are all homemade in small batches and delivered at the customers’ doorsteps. Priced from `35 onwards, they will soon hit retail shelves too.
For details, visit Instagram page @Sukhafoods or call 7358315402