KOCHI: To tackle the problem of hunger and at the same time wastage of food, Pappadavada, a restaurant chain in the city , has come up with a novel idea. The restaurant, which was inaugurated recently on the Kaloor-Kathrikadavu Road near the Kaloor bus stand, has installed a community refrigerator under a Konna tree (Cassia Fistula) in front of it. “Anyone can leave leftover food here in this refrigerator so that it can be a solace to the hungry and the starved. We named it ‘Nanma Maram’ (Virtue Tree) in this context,” says Minu Pauline, owner of Pappadavada.
“Apart from the food that Pappadavada keeps in the refrigerator, we request individuals, party makers, event managers and restaurant owners to deposit left over, but fresh and eatable food,neatly packed in this refrigerator of love. Through this ‘Nanma maram’ endeavor, we aim to conserve the precious natural resources and at the same time douse the hunger of several people,” she added. The cost of the power needed to operate the 420 L refrigerator throughout for 24 hours is borne by the restaurant. A CCTV has also been installed for night time security. Pappadavada will place 50 food packets everyday in the refrigerator. The needy can help themselves by taking the food they need.
The restaurant authorities request the people to mark the date of preparation of the food on the packet, before depositing it in the refrigerator, so that stale food can be removed promptly. Pappadavada restaurant has also taken the responsibility to clean the refrigerator twice a week. It was in January, 2014 that Minu Pauline, who quit her job in Citibank, started the Pappadavada Restaurant on MG Road in Ernakulam.
The restaurant gained popularity for the reasonable price it charged for food items. The main attraction of the restaurant are the ethnic snacks that include a variety of ‘vada’, ‘kozhukkatta’, ‘baji’, ‘valsan’, ‘sukhiyan’, ‘unnakkaya’, ‘irachipathiri’, ‘pazhampori’ and more that were charged just Rs.4-5. Her ethnic food combos include ‘puttu - nadan chicken curry’, ‘kappa-meen curry’, ‘kanji- payaru’, ‘idiyappam-kadala curry’, ‘Malabar biriyani’ and the list goes on.
Pappadavada that soon became the beloved food joint of the Kochites through its low-priced ethnic food items and the clean and hygienic atmosphere, included for the first time in the history of restaurants, ‘pazhamkanji’, a tasty breakfast delicacy of the past, to its menu.
The restaurant that does not serve rice, prepares rice with Rose chemba rice, exclusively for this purpose. ‘Pazhamkanji’ is prepared with the rice cooked the previous day which is soaked in water in an earthen pot. ‘Ammachi’s pazhamkanji’ is served along with scrumptious ethnic side dishes like ‘kappa puzhukku’, curd, ‘puliserry’, ‘coconut chammanthi’ and pickle along with green chili and two cloves of red shallot (small onion).
The renovated Pappadavada restaurant on MG Road, will be inaugurated on Monday and it will be open till 1 am like the one Kaloor, said Minu.