The thing I love about this interview with Angry Nani is that I am personally obsessed with my own Nani, (please see the photo of my Nani’s smile below to understand why). We are all obsessed with my Nani’s homemade chai masala, which is quite famous in the suburbs of New York from families that would visit my parents for chai as she lived with us for most of my life.
That being said, when Nimisha Srivastava, founder of Angry Nani told us she had dedicated her company to her own obsession with her mom’s (Nani) chai and food, I was all ears. Our whole team got a chance to try their amazing spices, from chai to biryani, and we were seriously floored. The flavors were authentic and on point.
Read on to find out about this amazing company.
Puja, Chai Mommas: Why did you start Angry Nani?
Nimisha, Angry Nani: For decades, friends and family have been obsessed with Nani’s chai, Indian food and ability to take seemingly boring vegetables and transform them into a mouthwatering feast. After Nani’s husband passed away, my mom, Nani, and I started Angry Nani to give her a new purpose later in life, showing it’s never too late to start focusing on yourself and your passion. So we decided to harness this authentic love of Indian cooking and bring it to the next generation; showcasing Indian spices, chai, and traditional recipes, but presenting them in a modern, sophisticated way. Being a multi-generational business has allowed us to mix some of the old and the new, preserving the treasured traditions, but being creative with ways to showcase their beauty. For example, launching our line of Biryani Rice Kits, which have become a fast bestseller!).
Nani herself can’t eat gluten and most of her recipes are vegetarian, and can easily be adapted for gluten-free and vegan eaters. In a world where many people have dietary restrictions, Nani also wanted to show that this doesn’t mean your food can’t have flavor! Our hope is that more people view Indian cooking as mainstream and experiment with new ways to use spices in their everyday meals!
Puja, Chai Mommas: I love that your spices are gluten free! For a family that struggles with celiac disease, the indian store options are not always the best for those of us that need a 100% gluten free, plus organic, indian plate of yumminess.
So, what do Indian spices mean to you?
Nimisha, Angry Nani: “Your cure is in your spice cabinet”. This is one of Nani’s favorite sayings and it is so true – her recipes, and recipes of Nani’s before her, are carefully constructed to not only taste great, but to also be good for you. Western culture is finally now catching on to the many health benefits of Indian spices, and we are proud that this is core to our philosophy – using only the highest quality spices we can find, it took Nani over a month to pick just the right cardamom! And finding suppliers who care about the supply chain.
Puja, Chai Mommas: As a yoga teacher, I have seen how awesome it has been for western culture to catch up to the beautiful benefits of eastern culture with yoga and of course indian spices like turmeric and ajwain.
Speaking of spices, what are your favorite summer spices?
Nimisha, Angry Nani: Chaat masala has to be one of Nani’s favorite summer spices; it’s very versatile, and can be used to make a refreshing chaat lemonade, sprinkled onto vegetables, sandwiches, or a hot poppadum. If you asked Nani in ANY season, turmeric is her favorite spice of all time, with so many health benefits and a beautiful warm color, just right for summer vegetable dishes.
Puja, Chai Mommas: Yes! Chaat masala cucumbers are our family favorite. You know, I actually love your chai masala too, don’t tell my own Nani! Do you have a fun recipe you have with your chai masala?
Nimisha, Angry Nani: Thank you! One of our new favorite recipes is a Cardamom Chai cake, which pairs perfectly with a cup of Nani’s authentic masala chai.
Check it out this recipe here.
Puja, Chai Mommas: Okay so I am definitely baking that cake! Thank you for sharing this all with us.Okay everyone, here is me enjoying Angry Nani chai and if I must say, it’s authentic and truly satisfying.*
*Disclaimer: For loyalty purposes, I will not be able say it is better than my own Nani’s chai, but let me just say…it is damn good.
For more info on Angry Nani, go to https://www.angrynani.com/.
Written by: Puja Shah, Chai Mommas, Chief of Content and Strategy