together and forward for Curry Delight

Afiya Altaf and Nasir Mohammed got Curry Delight going at the St. John's Farmers' Market, and earned a reputation for delicious, flavourful food that makes you feel good.  The story of their growing business and growing family is just as satisfying.

As we all work to #flattenthecurve, Curry Delight has made some operational changes and is focusing on take-away and delivery orders.

This kid! Nana moved to Newfoundland when he was born, and her presence and skill set the foundation for Curry Delight. photo by Richie Perez

by Afiya Altaf

Our personal journey starts as a student dream of travelling to another place to further our lives and careers and find the place where we want to create a life. This island was that place for the both of us. 

Nasir's mom, Farida came to visit us in 2014 before our first kid was born to be present with us as we celebrate one of the most important family moments of our own.  When she would prepare the meals for the family we would get immensely nostalgic. It was then that we realized how much we were missing our authentic flavours and our favourite dishes (that we couldn't successfully create on our own).  

That is where the idea of sharing food with others starting taking shape.  Farida taught us all her recipes and the processes to recreate her masterpieces and coached us to become more confident one dish at a time. Nasir's colleagues really encouraged us to take it to the next step and move from catering and house parties to having our own booth at the St. John's Farmer's Market.  The rest is history

Markets are like home to us.  After starting with the Farmers’ Market, we attended Some Good Market and the others, so we have a deep connection with all local markets. The concept and vision of local markets as a whole is so meaningful and rich.  Their growing popularity is just proof of how much people enjoy them. 

It is a social gathering, a platform to showcase the amazing local talent we have in abundance on the island.  It’s making connections, it is sharing art and food, it is smiles and laughter, creativity, ideas, collaborations among many others that markets are well known for - and rightfully so i must add. 

These markets are integral to the small business community but also for the patrons and people walking through its doors. Even to this day it gets us excited to get up early in the day, pack up all the food containers, whip up all the snacks crisp, fresh and hot and with a skip to our step head off to the St. John’s Farmer’s Market at 245 Freshwater Road where we get to meet all our vendor friends, staff, volunteers and of course the lovely crowd that walks in to experience the market. 

Nasir is warm with the welcome!

All the authentic dishes we prepare are all Farida's traditional recipes passed down from generations to generations perfected over time. We try to reflect Newfoundland cultures, preferences and tastes through our cooking while keeping its authenticity and flavour profiles intact and thus are proud of each and every dish on our menu. We also love being creative with the very basic spices and herbs that are home to us, and anything (all the way from meats, beans to leafy greens- basically anything that catches our eye) to create delicious combinations and blends that tie the entire dish together. We call it the 'Curry Delight Effect'.

Family connection is one of the strengths of Curry Delight

Over the years we have listened to people and closely observed the preferences and changing trends in the fast moving food industry and have found ways to incorporate them into our ever growing menu and into our business model and vision. It's the little things sometimes that completely change the final flavour profile of the dish and we owe those little surprises to a lot of our traditional herbs and spices such as Tamarind, Turmeric, Chillies, Saunf, Rae, Hing just to name a few!

We love sharing our authentic delicious and special flavours with other people. It is something so personal to us that it gave us joy to have others share in the delight. We live for that sparkle in someone's eye with that first bite as the flavour explodes in their mouth. It's a thrill for us and makes us smile ear to ear every single time!

Tamarind, Saunf, Rae... spices of India and Pakistan flavour meld through the colour and texture of Curry Delight plates.

We could never have imagined growing so much personally and professionally over the years side by side our little passion project but it has been a very empowering and rewarding experience and we wouldn't change a thing.   

The family has grown, and so had the business. Curry Delight remains a staple of the St. John's Farmers' Market, and is also a restaurant on Park Avenue in Mount Pearl.
Markets make friends! This original artwork was created by Emily Hunt, aka The Waffle Lady!

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Afiya Altaf

Afiya is co-owner of Curry Delight, a software developer with Empowered Homes, and an invested person who's looking for ways to build a strong and sustainable future for her family and her province. She and the family live in Mount Pearl.