Coppadom: Curry house in police box has managed to korma the market
ALOO, aloo, aloo – Scotland’s smallest curry house has opened up in a former police box.
Bollywood is just 3ft by 4ft and has already managed to korma the market in Edinburgh’s upmarket Bruntsfield district.
And suitably enough for an old police box, bobbies on the beat are among the most loyal customers.
Nutan Bala, 33, now plans to rent more old police boxes to establish a chain of tiny curry houses across the city.
£3.50 will get you a full curry with rice and 90p will get you a chapati. Hot soup and samosas are also on offer.
On the outside Miss Bala has made the place her own by decorating the roof with a small garden.
Inside is even smaller with all the cooking equipment, food tubs, kitchen hobs and of course a space where she can actually move about.
She has to shuffle around the cramped counters and duck under protruding pan-handles in the tiny shop.
But it hasn’t stopped the chirpy Indian from making a success of her modest but popular venture.
Nutan said: “I love people, laughing with them and having a good chat with them.
“It makes me feel good to do something good for other people.
“I don’t just cook curries here – this is like a wee laughing box where people arrive as a curious customer and leave as a friend.”
She added: “People here are very adventurous – they are up for trying anything and that’s great.
“They don’t turn their nose up at anything and always try something – it’s really refreshing to see people like the Scottish embracing all these different things.
“Honestly, you guys are amazing.
“I also want to try and make a Scottish curry with traditional vegetables so that’ll be available soon.”
Nevertheless the Bollywood box has come to be so popular that Nutan can make a living from it – despite it having similar rent costs to some fully-furnished flats.
Ironically, hungry passing police officers are also a fan.
“The rent for the box is £350 and then you have your bills.
“But I get about 50 to 60 customers a day and it’s going really well.
“I also have policemen who come and eat here as well and they love my cooking too.”
Nutan also plans to rent more phone boxes – one near the city’s Potterrow and another in the Cowgate.
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