One plus one equals two, that happens every day, that is not magic. That's the grind. That's when you get up, one. Go to work, one. Go to bed, two. But when one plus one equals three, that's when you see everything new, when you are visited by visions. It is the essential equation of love. It's the essential equation of art. It's the essential equation of rock 'n' roll. It's the reason the universe will never be fully comprehensible.
– Bruce Springsteen
It's not often you get the chance to make 1 + 1 = 3, but if you ever do – you should grab it with both hands. Because these are the moments you will remember, the ones you will cherish, the ones that make it all worthwhile.
We first approached Shamil and Kavi, incidentally two of our (and London’s) food heroes, in 2017 with the idea of a collaboration. Our Shoreditch branch is over the road from Babu House, so we often have the pleasure of seeing some of their team having a cheeky pizza on their lunch break. It's always been really clear to me that like us, Dishoom massively cares about welcoming all comers with open arms, and putting their heart and soul into everything that they do – from the food they serve, to the drinks they pour and the welcome of their team. Put simply, love is at the heart of what we do – it's an essential ingredient – and we wanted to find a way to celebrate that.
Needless to say, over the past two years, there have been plenty of discussions, testings, debates and yet more testing. And we were, for lack of a better couplet, ‘dead chuffed’ when we finally got to a place where we all felt we had something special. Thus... the Bacon & Egg Naan Pizza was born. And oh is it a prized dish! Clarence Court eggs and bacon from top-notch butcher, Ramsey of Carluke, atop a base of tomato sauce and cream cheese, a lick of Dishoom chilli tomato jam and a sprinkling of fresh coriander and green chilli.
Whilst on first inspection Indian and Italian cuisines seem a world apart – scratch the surface and you quickly see this isn’t the case. Both have strong regional variations in their cuisine, both rely heavily on chilli and tomatoes in their dishes, both have a strong matriarchal presence in their kitchen culture, and food is a huge part of bringing people together in both cultures. Ultimately, that was our aim in collaborating with Dishoom – to bring people together over delicious food and drink.
This was a great project to work on! A labour of love (and pizza). I have often dreamed of Dishoom’s Bacon & Egg Naan come dinner time – so I was super pumped to finally make that dream a (sort of) reality as we've made the iconic dish available for the whole day for the first time!
Needless to say the reaction has been phenomenal – and people have travelled far and wide to taste the pizza. The team have been massively energised in coming together to make sure every single one is delivered with love – alongside the more traditional Neapolitan options on our menu.
And most importantly – it is all for an amazing cause. For every pizza sold, we will donate two “Magic Breakfasts” to hungry or disadvantaged children across the UK – one from Dishoom and one from Pizza Pilgrims. Magic Breakfast is a truly brilliant charity – their aim is to end hunger as a barrier to education by providing free, nutritious school breakfasts to hungry children – and we couldn’t be prouder or more humbled to contribute to this, albeit it through a slightly barmy pizza/naan mash-up!
So, if that is not 1+1=3, I don’t know what is.
Thanks so much to everyone at Dishoom for letting our little idea become a reality.
Pizza & Love!
The Dishoom Bacon and Egg Naan Pizza was available from 21st October until 17th November. And we're absolutely delighted to share that in total, we donated 10,000 'Magic Breakfasts' – one from us, and one from Pizza Pilgrims – to hungry children across the UK. We're blown away by this. Enormous thank you to all guests that made this possible (by eating our somewhat barmy creation) and extra special thanks to Pizza Pilgrims for hosting such a barmy idea!
We began working with Magic Breakfast in 2015, supporting them in their goal of ending hunger as a barrier to education in the UK. Over the years, we’ve developed lasting and loyal friendships with the incredible team and their partner schools. This month, we celebrate reaching the milestone of donating 10 million meals to hungry children in partnership with Magic Breakfast and Akshaya Patra. Magic Breakfast’s Head of Schools, Rachael Anderson, has kindly taken the time to reflect on the last six years of our work together, as well as sharing her thoughts on the profound impact the past twelve months have had.
Since 2015, for every Dishoom meal you’ve enjoyed (whether in the cafés, via delivery, or as a meal kit), we’ve donated a meal to a child that might otherwise go hungry. A meal for a meal. This month, as we reached the milestone of donating 10 million meals, we had occasion to catch up with our dear friends and long-term charity partners, Magic Breakfast and Akshaya Patra. The work both charities do to end hunger as a barrier to education is simply incredible and we’re extremely proud to be able to support them and the communities they serve in the UK and India, respectively. We kindly invite you to take a moment to hear their reflections on our partnership and on the impact of the very important work they do.
Uttapam are a fluffy savoury dosa, made with rice. They're usually enjoyed with savoury toppings but we particularly like ours with lashings of jaggery syrup and a thick, strained yoghurt. Chef Naved has shared his recipe for making an extra fluffy stack at home.
Our Old-Fashioned bottled cocktail takes its name from the Permit Room bar, found in every Dishoom and so named after the official term for all Bombay drinking establishments, in which, according to the Bombay Prohibition Act of 1949, only permit-holders may consume alcohol. Herein, liquor can be sold and imbibed, but only for the goodness of one’s health.
Though the doors of the Permit Room are closed for now, you can still enjoy our tipples in bottled form at home. Follow our lead to achieve the perfect pour, and transport yourself back to a cosy corner of the bar.