10 Tips For Women Travelling to Lahore, Pakistan

By Sonya Rehman

Much has been said and written about Lahore’s hospitality and its alluring charm. Known as the cultural capital of Pakistan, Lahore is the kind of city that pulls you into a warm embrace, refusing to let go, shoving morsel upon morsel of delicious grub in your face! Lahoris take their food very seriously, but more on dining out later…

The city is home to gorgeous art fairs, theatre, heritage events, literary festivals, glitzy fashion weeks, a plethora of food and music festivals, awe-inspiring heritage sites, and the prettiest ethnic jewellery you’ll ever get your hands on.

In the city, you’ll also find an interesting blend of the old and the new, high-end brands and post-colonial buildings, Eastern classical jazz (yes, you read that right – Lahore’s first-ever live jazz orchestra by way of the well-known Sachal Studios), fine dining restaurants and the tastiest street food picks found in every nook and cranny in the Old City’s winding streets.

Illustration by Xin Lee for Zafigo

1. The best time to visit Lahore

Make sure you book your ticket for fall/winter – the summer is a big no-no. Why? Soaring temperatures and incessant electricity load-shedding will make you want to scream all the way back to the airport and hop on a plane back home. Even if you’re staying at a hotel, walking around the city outdoors is practically unbearable in the thick of a sweltering, claustrophobic summer. Besides, Lahore is prettiest in the winters – so save your woolies, warm coats, boots and gloves for a chilly vacay in Lahore with your fam-jam, or, on your own!

2. Where to stay

If you want to stay at a swanky, contemporary hotel, The Nishat Hotel is the place to check in at. Also, it’s located in the heart of the city and is a stone’s throw away from a number of the city’s popular eateries and boutiques. On the other hand, there’s also good old Pearl Continental and Avari, on Lahore’s glorious Mall Road; 5-star hotels which have been in the business for yonks, so, super dependable.

Although on the flip side, if you can stay with a friend in Lahore to experience true ‘Lahori culture,’ even better.

3. Eating out

Let’s get one thing straight: Lahoris quite literally, live to eat. From fancy fine dining, to the most scrumptious street food delights – the city has it all. For breakfast, make sure you don’t miss out on halwa poori – a rich, gluttonous and utterly delicious Pakistani breakfast platter full of soft pooris, a piping hot and spicy potato curry, in addition to a mouth-watering chickpea curry. Be warned though, immediately after you polish off your platter, you’ll be hit by a food coma so intense, you’ll have little choice but to hit the sack and snooze it off.

Other food spots to check out: cruise through MM Alam road in Gulberg for Pakistani, Chinese, Italian and continental cuisine, apart from a few fast food options. Pro-tip: make a pit stop at Khalifa Bakers – Lahore’s most famous bakery, known for their melt-in-your-mouth, nutty nan khataai cookies best devoured with a mug of sweet tea. For an incredible view of the Old City, (particularly the Lahore Fort and the Badshahi Mosque), dine out at Andaaz (preferably for dinner). While the food at Cuccoo’s Den restaurant (a stone’s throw away from Andaaz, on the same street) is nothing to write home about, do make sure you check it out – the space is jam-packed with utterly beautiful paintings, artifacts, ethnic art pieces and furniture. You’ll love taking pictures and selfies at Cuccoo’s for Instagram.

4. Transport

Make sure you get a local sim card (once you land at the airport) and immediately download the Careem app onto your phone. I’ve always been a big advocate of Careem because their drivers are polite and respectful (not to mention, most are decent drivers), and a far cry from all the Uber horror stories I’ve been hearing about. If you want my advice, only use Careem and a taxi service called Albayraq. While sightseeing in the Old City, don’t forget to grab a colourful ‘rangeela rickshaw’ – though the rates are a bit high, it’s worth every rupee as the rickshaw-wallah will drive you around the Old City in a pimped-up ride, in style!

A rangeela rickshaw in the Old City. Photo: Sonya Rehman

5. Sight-seeing in the city

The list is endless, but let me try to whittle in down for you: the Lahore Fort, the Badshahi Mosque, the Wazir Khan Mosque, the Shahi Hammam, Jahangir’s Tomb, Minar-e-Pakistan, Bagh-e-Jinnah (in addition to the Quaid-e-Azam Library located in the same vicinity), Shalimar Gardens, and more. If you’d prefer to tag along with a local tour company, do check out The Mad Hatters and Turr Lahore, also, if you have time, there’s a local tourism bus service, Sightseeing Lahore Bus Service, that’s totally worth checking out too.

View of the Badshahi Mosque from Cuccoo’s Den. Photo: Sonya Rehman

6. Hot shopping spots

Apart from the city’s countless boutiques and shopping spots (peppered in and around Gulberg and DHA, primarily), spend one full day at Lahore’s Liberty Market. Here, you’ll go crazy over the rolls of loose fabric in every colour and type imaginable! Apart from fabric, Liberty Market is home to gorgeous shawls and stoles (if you’re visiting during the winter season), junk jewellery, lace and button shops, and, most importantly, lovely ethnic footwear. For shoes, stop by at Khussa Mahal for khussas, kola puris and leather slippers. I bet you’ll leave the shop with at least five pairs of shoes! For pure silver jewellery and little jeweled trinkets to take back with you as gifts for loved ones, check out Kabul Handicrafts (shop #162-G) at Liberty Market. If you can’t find it, ask any shopkeeper to direct you to the Afghan jeweller’s shop. Everyone knows who he is.

Other must-visit shopping spots include; Auriga Complex, good old Anarkali and the Pakistan Handicrafts shop (on Davis Road) for pretty souvenirs and artsy bits and bobs for your home.

These are the kinds of gems you’ll find at Liberty Market. Photo: Sonya Rehman

7. Malls

Mall culture in Lahore has taken off in a big way, so if you’re keen to kill some time (and splurge some cash while you’re at it), visit the Mall of Lahore, Packages Mall and Emporium Mall – three of the city’s coolest shopping malls that house a number of brands under one roof.

8. Safety

Dress appropriately at all times. If you want to wear pants, pair it with a long tunic and a scarf/stole – particularly when you visit the Old City. They won’t allow you inside the Badshahi Mosque without your head suitably covered. When in Rome, do as the Romans do. And when in Lahore, enjoy Pakistani fashion! Lahoris are generally very friendly people, but set your boundaries as you go along. Stick to taxis for transport. For emergencies, keep these numbers handy: 15 (police emergency), 115 (ambulance).

9. Book shops

Liberty Books (at Packages Mall) and The Last Word have a wonderful, eclectic selection of new titles and numerous genres for you to pick from. So if you’re looking for a good book to keep you company on your flight back home, look no further.

10. Museums

While the Lahore Museum should be a given on your Lahore bucket list, the Fakir Khana Museum is a gleaming jewel set in the heart of the Old City, that must be visited. Imagine, the space houses the largest personal collection (approximately 20,000 pieces of art) in all of South Asia! Once at the Old City, ask a local to direct you to Bazaar-e-Hakima (in Bhatti Gate). Once there, anyone will be able to lead you to the museum. Don’t forget to take photos!

The Fakir Khana Museum. Photo: Sonya Rehman

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Allahyar and the Legend of Markhor Wows Pakistani Audiences

By Sonya Rehman

Now playing across Pakistani cinemas this month, the new animated production, Allahyar and the Legend of Markhor, made in collaboration with WWF Pakistan, is not only a visual delight for cinemagoers, but also highlights a crucial issue: wildlife conservation.

Characters, Allahyar and Mehru, in a still from the film. Photo courtesy of: 3rd World Studios.

At the heart of the story is protagonist Allahyar, a young boy who befriends Mehru, a markhor (an endangered wild goat species and Pakistan’s national animal), and their thrilling journey to save Mehru’s family at the hands of Mani, a merciless poacher.

Set against beautiful Pakistani landscapes and scenery, the film packs a punch vis-à-vis dazzling cinematography, heartwarming songs and lovable characters.

Photo courtesy of: 3rd World Studios.

Having specialized in character animation from Vancouver Film School, the film’s director, Uzair Zaheer Khan, isn’t a rookie to the world of CG (computer graphics), and has worked in the CG industry for two decades on a number of projects – one such being the award-winning Pakistani animated series, Burka Avenger.

Uzair Zaheer Khan. Photo courtesy of: 3rd World Studios.

“Since there haven’t been a lot of animated films being made in Pakistan, I thought I’d take the initiative to produce one for several reasons,” Khan says, “One was that I wanted to demonstrate that our country’s CG artists can create quality work at par with what’s being produced overseas. We have so many decent artists in Pakistan and not enough projects, so I thought if we put together something nice, it would encourage others to contribute towards the local animation industry.”

Khan mentions that through Allahyar and the Legend of Markhor, he also hopes to promote Pakistani culture in addition to instilling in Pakistani children values – such as empathy for all living creatures – that are “slowly being eroded.”

Photo courtesy of: 3rd World Studios.

While the director understands that the local animation industry stands at a nascent stage, he feels there’s enormous talent on home turf for it to truly take off.

“We lose a lot of brilliant artists to international studios and I’m pretty sure if all of them came back, there would be incredible films being made here. Sure it’s cool to work in all these awesome places where there’s immense learning involved, but I feel it’s our responsibility to stay here and give back. I’m a firm believer in the fact that there’s a lot of potential and talent in Pakistan that’s just waiting to be explored.”

Photo courtesy of: 3rd World Studios.

But while the team currently rides the high-tide of public and media praise, the film was not without its challenges. “There were humongous issues,” Khan reveals, “If you plan something which you haven’t ever done before, there are a thousand things that you overlook. We made lots of mistakes. Since we had budget constraints, we couldn’t work endlessly on the film and knew we wouldn’t be able to perfect it one hundred percent. However, since this was our first production, and now that we’ve gone through the process, we have an opportunity to make better films in the future.”

Forbes

Conservative Pakistan’s Transgender Rising

By Sonya Rehman

Pakistani transgender activist and dancer Jannat Ali has felt like an impostor at times, her gender identity repeatedly challenged. It took years of sleepless nights for her to summon the courage to come out to her parents. But at a TEDx event in Lahore last October, she was swamped by men and women seeking autographs and selfies after a performance and address that drew a standing ovation.

“Till you don’t fight for your rights and your truth, you can’t expect a positive change,” Ali said, and the battle has been long. In the 19th century, the region’s British rulers had labeled the Indian subcontinent’s transgender community a “criminal tribe.” And unlike many other social groups that were criminalized for challenging the British, the transgender communities on both sides of the blood-soaked India-Pakistan border have largely remained mocked, loathed and marginalized in the decades since independence in 1947.

Jannat Ali – Photo by Saad Sarfraz Sheikh.

But the reception Ali received at the Lahore event is indicative of slowly shifting attitudes toward the transgender community in otherwise conservative Pakistan, marked by growing acceptance of their gender by the government, sections of society and even religious scholars. They are still victims of stereotypes and violence, and the road to parity with the rest of society remains long and hard. Still, the momentum toward change is building like never before. Islamabad’s Allama Iqbal Open University announced free classes — from junior high to college — for the transgender community in October. This past summer, Pakistan’s government issued its first third-gender passport to a transgender activist, Farzana Jan. In 2009, the country’s Supreme Court urged provincial governments to facilitate rights of their transgender communities; in 2012, the country’s National Database and Registration Authority provided an option for the third gender on its ID cards. In 2017, the national census recognized the transgender community for the first time. And a bill to protect the community’s rights is currently before Parliament.

Kami Sid – Photo by Haseeb Siddqiui

In 2016, activist Kami Sid became the first Pakistani transgender model to be featured in a fashion photo shoot. Transgender activists and performers participate in popular television shows and on national radio, and as panelists and guests at events and festivals. Ali, valedictorian in her MBA program and a trained kathak performer, was invited last year to speak at a prominent college and a private school. And recently, Chairman of the Council of Islamic Ideology Qibla Ayaz labeled transgender discrimination unethical and un-Islamic.

“You can now see how the stereotypes are slowly being broken,” Ali tells me, when I visit the Khawaja Sira Society in Lahore, a community-building organization where she works as a coordinator.

Founded in 2012, the KSS and its work represent a microcosm of both the attitudinal changes in Pakistani society toward the transgender community and the challenges that continue to pothole the path ahead.

The organization provides a safe space for the transgender community, and offers counseling sessions, HIV/AIDS testing and prevention methods, educational workshops on sexual health and human rights, advocacy and outreach programs. Up a flight of stairs and past a balcony overlooking a dusty commercial road, a door on the left opens into the office lounge, a cozy space with a large dining table and chairs, mirrors lining brightly painted orange walls, and rows of cushions on either side of the room where visitors can relax or nap. Near the entrance, a pink poster taped above the switchboard declares “Proud to Be a Transgender.” But demonstrating that pride isn’t easy. A tall, heavyset person with a thick mustache who touches my head maternally while passing by turns out to be a member of the transgender community who, Ali tells me, hasn’t come out publicly yet, and so maintains that appearance.

Lucky – Photo by Saad Sarfraz Sheikh

Some, like the aptly named Lucky, may appear more fortunate than others — but theirs too is a story of struggle. Slim and petite, with her hair pulled back in a short ponytail, Lucky, a KSS outreach worker, knew she was different by the time she was 5. Her parents, who worked at a Lahore college, knew soon enough too, but ignored the subject. When she turned 13, Lucky left home after a fight with her family. She lived on the streets, barely surviving off money earned from sex work and alms. But a few years later, after her mother took ill, her parents asked her to move in with them again. A passionate singer and occasional actress, Lucky acted in Teesri Dhun: The Third Tune, a 2016 theater production on the lives of Pakistan’s transgender community that was also performed at American graduate schools, including Yale and the University of Texas at Austin. “My mother and my father came to watch my performance along with my boyfriend,” Lucky says. “It was such a perfect moment for me.”

The cast of Teesri Dhun – Image courtesy of Teesri Dhun

Others struggle to get their loved ones to acknowledge them in public. Nirmal, another outreach worker, says her boyfriend of six years refuses to be seen with her in public. “He says, ‘What if my friends make fun of me?’”

Transgender activists continue to face taunts from the police — and ordinary people, at times — while on outreach programs, accused of promoting sex when they hand out condoms. And the recent policy changes introduced to help the community represent “only a drop in the ocean,” says Neeli Rana, a veteran transgender activist. Although embittered by years of promises to the community that she says have mostly proved hollow, Rana continues to fight “for our next generations” and their right to work wherever they wish to, without any backlash.

Neeli Rana, Jannat Ali and Ashi – Photo by Saad Sarfraz Sheikh

Others are seeing signs of compassion, starting with their families. Ashi, another prominent transgender activist, fled her home at the age of 13 to escape a physically abusive father who wouldn’t accept her. Years later, when her father had been bedridden for two years, Ashi returned home — the only one of her siblings to do so — and she now looks after her 86-year-old mother.

On his deathbed, Ashi’s father wept and begged for her forgiveness. “I cried and told him I’d forgiven him a long time ago, and that he was my parent and that it was my duty to care for him,” she recalls. That sense of duty, felt for its transgender community, is something Pakistan may be waking up to.

OZY

An Observation On The Upper West Side

By Sonya Rehman

During an internship in the city, I remember walking home late one night after dinner with a friend. The dismal restaurant we ate at was a few blocks from my dorm. Being a weekday, I remember spotting a woman who worked at the media house I was interning at. She was a producer and had a few awards that she’d won up on a shelf in her VVIP office.

I remember thinking what a strong ball-buster of a woman she was; she wore a white leather jacket, slim-fit black pants and her short blonde hair was perfectly blow-dried, cupping her defined jaw-line.

Her aura was a tad intimidating and she seemed like the kind of woman who was functioning on another plane altogether – one of incredible stress and deadlines. She also seemed like the kind of woman who had earned her place in the world, all on her own. So there was a bit of anger beneath the surface. She had mettle and a pronounced masculine, no-nonsense vibe.

But when I saw her walking down the upper west side, with her arm locked into a man’s arm, I couldn’t stop staring at her face. Her expression was gentle and soft. She had a spring in her step as she walked with the unknown man. He paled in comparison to her; shorter, balding, slim, simply dressed. She had her head thrown back, laughing, her face glowing. Their body language was in sync, romantic. They passed me by, like teenagers, blinded to the world.

I walked past, digging my hands into my coat pockets to stay insulated. It was horribly cold as I carried the image of her warm, happy face all the way back to my room. I couldn’t stop wondering if I had mistaken her for someone else.

A Space For Pakistani Artistes

By Sonya Rehman

Now in its fourth year, the Lahore Music Meet (LMM) recently wrapped up its two-day symposium last week, featuring a wonderful variety of seasoned and upcoming Pakistani musicians and vocalists.

Bushra Marvi . Photo by Ali Chaudhry Films.

Founded by two young music aficionados, Natasha Noorani and Zahra Paracha, the LMM was initiated with the sole intention of establishing a platform that exclusively caters to Pakistani music.

“Considering how fragmented the music industry has been, the aim was to bring people from different segments of the industry; audio engineers, musicians, academics and the audience into one cohesive space,” states Noorani, “We wanted to bring everyone’s narrative into one place so that we could forgo the ego problems that have long haunted the industry and learn from all of the amazing individuals in the roster of Pakistani music.”

Abid Brohi. Photo by Ali Chaudhry Films.

Featuring Qawwali superstars, Fareed Ayaz and Abu Muhammad Qawwal, the renowned Balochi folk singer, Akhtar Channal, and more, this year’s LMM showcased engrossing sessions such as; Synth Masterclass: The Analogue Aesthetic in a Digital World, Violin Masterclass & Dastangoi and Shaken not Stirred: Western Percussions Masterclass, in addition to a number of live performances and interactive discussions, bringing music enthusiasts (and those associated with Pakistan’s music fraternity) under one roof at Lahore’s art and cultural hub, the Alhamra Art Centre.

Fareed Ayaz and Abu Muhammad Qawwal performing at the LMM ’18. Photo by Ali Chaudhry Films.

“The local music scene is extremely exciting! There is music coming out of every pore of Pakistan and it makes for some very interesting listening,” Noorani says, who mentions that she and Paracha spend each year hunting for talent, particularly unfamiliar voices, to introduce new ideas, genres and tunes to their audiences.

“Recent developments in hip-hop, progressive rock and folk pop have been refreshing finds. Acts like Poor Rich Boy, Shajie, Lyaari Underground, Kashmir, Sikandar Ka Mandar, Keeray Makoray, Bayaan, Saakin, Red Blood Cat, Ehl-e-Rock are all great examples of young musicians really setting the standard for music in Pakistan across genres.”

Akhtar Channal. Photo by Ali Chaudhry Films.

“Musically, I think Pakistan has one of the most interesting music scenes because of the distinction between what is concerned mainstream and underground,” Paracha states, “I have met a lot of people who restrict their outlook on Pakistani music to the few who can afford to put themselves out there in the spotlight or who have the right connections. This is not to say that they aren’t talented, but the industry seems to have reached a point where people believe that merit alone can only get you so far. While sadly that may be true, I’ve been observing an increase in the amount of music being produced and released in the country over the past few years; therefore I’d like to believe that this reflects a growth in the local music scene.”

The founders of LMM: Natasha Noorani (left) and Zahra Paracha (right). Photo by Ali Chaudhry Films.

But is a revival of the local music scene on the horizon? “I think the music industry in Pakistan has taken many hits over the years for which it has suffered but has also made musicians a lot stronger,” says Paracha, who dreams of taking local artistes on world tours under the banner of LMM. “It’s a common misconception that music in the country is dead when the masses don’t seem to acknowledge it. But I feel our music industry is very much alive, however, our musicians and the masses have yet to realize it for themselves.”

Forbes

#JusticeForZainab

By Sonya Rehman

Zainab Amin’s grisly murder in Kasur this week comes as a stark reminder of where we’re headed as a nation, infact, cross that, we’re already there.

After the hue and cry following the 2015 Kasur child porn ring bust where over 300 children were raped and filmed – touted as the largest child abuse scandal in the history of the country – what happened to the investigation, if there ever was one? Why was it hushed up, why were the families of the victims silenced and why didn’t the local media follow through with any investigative pieces to unearth the debauched criminals behind it?

As per Sahil, the well-known child protection not-for-profit, over a 100 cases of child abuse (rape, sodomy, abductions and gang-rapes) were reported from Kasur last year. And in 2015 alone, more than 400 such cases were registered in Kasur. One shudders to think how many more such incidents have taken place that are yet to be reported. It truly makes one’s blood run cold.

But we’re all to blame. We are all party to the filth and the depravity. For one, local media gives airtime to unhinged individuals such as Orya Maqbool Jan who has the audacity to state (on national television no less), that women provoke men to rape them by the clothes they wear and that this in turn leads to children being picked up and sodomized. Secondly, why are we not scrutinizing our so-called leaders and demanding answers; why haven’t we pressured the current PML-N MPA, Malik Ahmed Saeed, and insisted on thorough investigations in Kasur? What is causing these incidents to continue happening? Who is protecting the perpetrators of these gruesome crimes? What is the solution? How can the state ensure that our children will be protected from hereon?

Thirdly, as a society, we turn a blind eye to child abuse because we consider it dangerously taboo to speak about…so what do we do? We stay silent and turn on the victim in a twisted version of Blame The Victim! when the abuse plays out right under our noses, within our four walls, and at the hands of a trusted family member or hired help.

As long as we as a nation continue to doggedly refuse to accept the cancer that is child abuse concealed within the very fabric of our society, we will continue to gently wrap up innocence in a coffin, while wailing crocodile tears, marinating in our deadened complacency, insincerity and numbness.

And on the opposite side of the spectrum, what do we have? Men building shrines for revered murderers, who sob at the graves of criminals, who continue to galvanize the misled for their fanatical dharnas, while they froth at the mouth over asinine subjects like Valentine’s Day, bludgeon young men of hope and promise, like Mashal Khan, misinterpret and misuse the word of God for their dirty agendas, yet none come forward to wage a war against the utter need of the hour; the battle against child abuse.

We’re all in it together, rotting away in our little cesspool of sin and deceit.

The News on Sunday (TNS), The News International 

Tracing Pakistan’s Scrumptious Food Trail

By Sonya Rehman

At first glance, Pakistan Heritage Cuisine – A Food Story, is a beautiful coffee table book. Replete with gorgeous photography, the book is an ode to Pakistan, its people and most importantly, to its diverse cuisine.

Penned by an entrepreneur based in Karachi, Sayeeda Leghari, and published Markings, a local publishing house, Leghari states that she wanted to give back to Pakistan in some way or the other, given her immense love for her country. Being a diehard foodie, the overall subject of the book – food – thus, was an obvious choice.

“We don’t have a huge book culture coming out of Pakistan,” Leghari states, mentioning that print, for her, was therefore the best medium to celebrate the country’s exhaustive, gastronomic range of grub that has been served up from the home kitchen to the restaurant for decades.

Sayeeda Leghari

“My love for food and the global love for food made me realize it was a good theme to work on,” she explains, “The world unites on food, but since the topic of food is such a vast subject, through this book, I’ve tried to bring in a little bit of everything vis-à-vis our heritage and our culture, in it. But I’ve only touched the tip of the iceberg; there’s so much more that needs to be said and written about regarding Pakistani cuisine.”

Tracing the country’s delectably diverse food trail throughout its provinces, each page highlights well-known dishes that are part of the very fabric of the Pakistani identity. From maghaz masala to daal fry, biryani to palla machli, an assortment of kebabs (distinct in their preparation and seasoning), to an assortment of melt-in-your-mouth breads (bakarkhani, kulcha, the good old paratha, and more), to scrumptious local desserts (malai ka khaja, Peshawari ice cream, qulfi, zarda, and the list is endless) and a separate section on ‘community cuisine’ (featuring the likes of bagare baingan, Bohri thaal, nargisi koftay, etc), snacks and drinks – Pakistan Heritage Cuisine – A Food Story makes a successful, ambitious attempt at bringing forth all that is Pakistani in a stunning, 300-page book.

With strikingly rich photography by way of photographers, Izdeyar Setna, Amna Zuberi, Kohi Marri and Mobeen Ansari, Leghari reveals that she traveled extensively throughout the country along with her late childhood friend, Ali Yousuf (mentioned as the food expert in the book), who was known among their circle of friends as someone who simply had a knack for sussing out the best places to find certain dishes at. “I always knew about his love for food and his penchant for finding authentic restaurants in Pakistan,” she says, mentioning the numerous eateries they visited and sampled food at.

For instance, one little outlet, discovered by Yousuf in Lahore, was one that specializes purely in authentic hareesa. “The owner of the shop travels from Kashmir and only serves hareesa at his shop for three months in a year,” Leghari states, “And he’s always booked!”

“Throughout my travels, I noticed that these authentic food places aren’t fancy, but they take so much pride in what they’re serving to their customers,” the author goes on to say, “Their kitchens and utensils are sparkling clean; something that we might not even see in the largest restaurants in the trendiest joints in our major cities! What truly stood out for me was the pride with which these pioneer retailers took in cooking and serving their food, and at the same time, keeping their cuisine’s authenticity alive.”

With commentary by Hussain Haroon (the former Pakistan Ambassador to the United Nations), Fatima Surayya Bajia (the late, iconic playwright), Marjorie Hussain (the well-known artist and curator) and Khawar Butt, including a number of family favourite recipes, Pakistan Heritage Cuisine – A Food Story, will enthuse you to create a storm in the kitchen, next you’re considering putting together a meal for your loved ones.

The Friday Times