Conversations Events Featured

Karen Anand Talks About Pune, the Farmers' Market & More!


On occasion of the 50th Edition of Markets by Karen Anand, or as you better know it, Pune Farmer’s Market, I had a chat with the most charming-as-ever Ms. Anand- about the event, what she’s been up to and more! Read up on!
PFM’s 50th Edition! You must be beyond excited! Tell me, what’s the one (or two) thing/s you would have done differently on your way to this milestone?
We are so excited! Truthfully, we never really knew where this was going to head. My husband Yadu and I had been wanting to do a Farmers’ Market for many years since we have seen so many in Europe. In fact, we had brought in a franchise of Taste of London (Taste of Mumbai) and it was his suggestion to do a Farmers’ Market to understand the operations of an event like this.
We expected Taste of Mumbai to grow into different cities in India and had no such expectation of the Market. Ironically, Taste of Mumbai became a one-off. It is just too premium a product for India right now. Whereas the Markets have boomed across India!
When we last met, apart from PFM and more, you were also consulting for massive restaurant businesses. That was about 3-4 years ago. What have you been up to since?
Lots! A couple of restaurant projects, but my passion has been curating a Culinary Tour to Italy which I hope to expand next year, lots of writing (I have a regular column in the Telegraph Kolkata on Sundays, fortnightly column on HT online, The Hindu Chennai, Harpers Bazaar magazine and my blog!
Which is the one cuisine your palette never agrees with?
Any cuisine with too much chilli!
What’s your go-to meal when you wish to keep it simple and yet relish soul-food?
Dal Khichdi/ Aloo Matar/ any Soup.
What’s the most exciting part about PFM, for you personally?
New vendors doing such wonderful things; new products and meeting everyone at the Market.
What’s your take on “food bloggers” today?
Hmm… some are very good but not all for sure. Some have no knowledge and interest in learning about the subject.
Although you probably have hundreds of these, tell me about the first most memorable meal you remember.
Kiri Kaleji at the age of about 4; my grandmother’s Prawn Curry and Balchao.
The one thing you’ve always wanted to do but still haven’t gotten to it (food or non-food related).
So many things still on my bucket list, mainly revolving around travel. Tokyo’s Tsukiji market, South America, learning the Tango in Buenos Aires.
One experience you’ll always revisit as a complete food nightmare.
Getting food poisoning from food at a Goa beach shack.
Your absolute favorite Pune Street food?
Misal Pav.
What do you love most about Pune?
Two things- winter and the old shop keepers on MG Road and in Shivaji Market (Salamat at City Bakery / Shashikant fishmonger).
The 50th Edition of Markets by Karen Anand is all set to take Pune by storm on February 3rd and 4th! See you there, Punekars!