For a major portion of the South Indian population, Dosa is not just a food item, it is an emotion. The juicy and delicious batter along with the side dishes have been pleasing our taste buds for ages now.
This love for Dosa and a never-give-up attitude is what transformed Ram Kumar Shinde from a struggling entrepreneur to the owner of Hyderabad’s most recognized food destinations.
Ram grew up seeing his father struggling to meet the ends. The main source of income for Ram’s father was a food cart that he used to call “Ram’s Bandi”. When he was young, Ram used to hang around with his father so that he could see how the Dosas and Idlis were made and served.
This curiosity for knowledge came in handy for Ram when he acquired the food cart seven years back. The initial days, however, did not bring any luck for Ram. Loss of a large chunk of money and the lack of profits made him wonder whether he was going in the right path.
“People can get a good dosa in many places so why would they come to me? It was then that I decided that I should do something about my dosas,” Ram recalls.
As Dosas were pretty much open to innovation, Ram started incorporating Paneer, butter and cheese into his recipes. And this proved to be the turning point of his story.
“I was one of the first places in Hyderabad where you could get pizza dosa. I thought about the recipe myself and then saw a little while later that other people were also making it. That’s why my pizza dosa is slightly different.I only get good brands like Amul for my cheese and butter. I want to make sure that people are satisfied with the quality of my food,” Ram said during an interview.
Nowadays, Ram’s Bandi is a cult food destination on Hyderabad. Despite odd working hours of 3am to 8am, Ram’s bandi never ceases to attract a crowd. Techies, municipal workers, MLAs, and a plethora of people from different levels of the society come over to get a bite of Ram’s Dosas.
Recently, he opened a new restaurant which is attracting a great response as well.
“Already a lot of VIPs and big Telugu actors are coming. People are visiting with families and you see a lot of youngsters sitting on weekends” Ram says.
But Ram has not abandoned his bandi in light of the new restaurant. He still wakes up at 2am and serves some delicious food for the foodies. The only difference from his starting days and now is that you could find the location of his cart with a simple Google search these days.
Tune into Cookbook for more foodie stories and recipes.