Esteemed journalist and Food Historian Sharmila Basu Thakur launched her much-anticipated book, “Rannar Roopkatha,” on November 28th and 29, 2023. Published by Mandas, the book transcends traditional recipe collections, delving into the rich tapestry of Sharmila’s life, childhood memories, and her profound love for her mother. The book was launched over two days by celebrated personalities like Joy Goswami, Swastika Mukherjee, Sudipta Chakraborty, Sujoy Prosad Chatterjee, Bratati Bandopadhyay, Paroma Banerjee and Alpana Habib among others.
The event was attended by many well known faces of the city.
Sharmila Basu Thakur, a multifaceted individual who has worn various hats in academia and journalism, served as the editor at Sananda magazine before retiring. Today, she proudly embraces the title of Food Historian, distinguishing herself from conventional food bloggers by sharing not just recipes but the captivating stories and cultural histories behind them.
The launch date held special significance as it coincided with Sharmila’s mother’s birthday, a tribute to the woman who inspired her culinary journey. “Whatever is beautiful in this world, everything I have received from my mom,” expressed Sharmila, underscoring the deep influence her mother had on her appreciation for aesthetics and diverse talents.
In addition to her literary pursuits, Sharmila has cultivated a vibrant online presence through her YouTube channel, “Food Farishta,” and a unique pop-up eatery at 549 Lake Road, Amarabati, 2nd Floor. This distinctive culinary venture not only offers delectable dinners made from fresh seasonal ingredients but also hosts cultural events and interactive sessions in an intimate and cozy setting.
“Rannar Roopkatha” seamlessly weaves together recipes, childhood anecdotes, and the author’s evolving relationship with food. The trajectory, from cooking with toy utensils to learning food histories from her mother, reflects the diverse influences that shaped Sharmila’s culinary identity. The book even gives a glimpse of her extended family, the vendors at the local bazaar, in the chapter “Extended Family.”
A poignant chapter titled “Gurudakshina” pays homage to Sharmila’s daughter, a chef, and explores the legacy of three generations who share a profound love for food. Through this memoir, Sharmila invites readers into her world, sharing not just recipes but the essence of her life and the culinary treasures passed down through generations.