Surrey’s samosa-slinging sisters win B.C. New Canadian Entrepreneur Award

Published: May 27, 2014

Team behind Newton-based Nana’s Kitchen and Hot Sauce cooks up 25,000 samosas a day

Samosa restaurant-Indian snacks

Nana’s Kitchen and Hot Sauce company operators, sisters Shelina Mawani (left) and Nasim Dhanji, with their B.C. New Canadian Entrepreneur Award, given by the Ethno Business Council of B.C. Surrey Now photo

TOM ZILLICH
SURREY NOW

NEWTON — A team behind production of gourmet samosas and hot sauces has won the B.C. New Canadian Entrepreneur Award.

The 22nd annual award, organized by the Ethno Business Council of B.C., was given to Newton-based Nana’s Kitchen and Hot Sauce at an event in Vancouver on Thursday evening (May 22).

The plant is operated by sisters Shelina Mawani and Nasim Dhanji, who launched their food-manufacturing business in the late-1990s.

“It’s truly an honour that we’ve been recognized like this, after so many years of hard work, especially as new immigrants to Canada,” Mawani said. “We are Canadians but not born in Canada. It’s been a long journey.”

Nana’s Kitchen cooks up 25,000 samosas a day, making it one of the largest producers of samosas in the province.

Mawani, whose job is to market and promote the business, said the award is shared with the company’s 37 employees.

The awards gala was held Thursday at Vancouver’s Pan Pacific Hotel, with tickets going for $120 per person.

The idea behind the awards is to identify successful business owners to inspire other newcomers to Canada.

In 1998 Nana’s Kitchen started out as a small restaurant in Burnaby. The sisters, originally from Tanzania, worked up to 18 hours a day. But the overtime and dedication couldn’t keep the business afloat, so within a year they were forced to shut down.

“It was the most difficult endeavour,” said Mawani. “We had lost quite a bit of money.”

With nowhere else to turn, they gave it another shot and re-purposed the business, turning it into a small manufacturing plant. One woman came in to cook the samosas, Dhanji made the filling and Mawani baked.

From there, they went “door-to-door to all the cafeterias, all the small coffee shops” to sell their unique gourmet product.

By 2003, they picked up momentum and moved into their first commercial-sized kitchen, and by 2007 moved into their current facility in Surrey, which is 17,000 square feet in size.

With files from Larissa Cahute, Vancouver Desi

Related Stories:


Tags: , , , , , , , ,





Featured

In this photograph taken on September 13, 2013 Indian students of Saint Joseph Degree college participate in an anti-rape protest in Hyderabad. NOAH SEELAM/AFP/Getty Images

Minor rape victim asked to slap the accused five times and settle matter

VANCOUVER DESI In a bizarre judgement passed by a local government body in an Indian village, a teen rape victim was asked not to register…
Continue Reading »

India-Khatav-Akola,Maharashtra

Baby born with two faces in India fighting for life (Warning: Graphic content)

VANCOUVER DESI A baby born with two faces and four eyes is fighting for her life at a hospital in western India, according to Ruptly….
Continue Reading »

Bollywood

Bollywood singer Shreya Ghoshal set to light up Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Theatre

Bollywood singing sensation performance will include classics and contemporary ALMAS MEHERALLY VANCOUVER DESI You’ve heard her songs and seen her on reality shows. Now Bollywood…
Continue Reading »

LOCAL NEWS

Bollywood

Bollywood singer Shreya Ghoshal set to light up Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Theatre

Bollywood singing sensation performance will include classics and contemporary ALMAS MEHERALLY VANCOUVER DESI You’ve heard her songs and seen her on reality shows. Now Bollywood…
Continue Reading »

desi girls

Surrey track prospects take a run at older competition

KYLE BENNING SURREY NOW NEWTON — Jasneet Nijjar hasn’t had to memorize her locker combination, find her classrooms or carry all of her textbooks home…
Continue Reading »

Hockey-Movie posters

Surrey hockey players go viral with ‘B-grade’ movie poster imitations

Surrey Eagle player and his pal get laughs with weekly photos that recreate famous movie posters KYLE BENNING SURREY NOW SOUTH SURREY — Every Monday…
Continue Reading »

Don't Miss...

PRV0826-SOCIETYEVICTED_217653098

City of Vancouver gives multicultural society the boot

LARISSA CAHUTE VANCOUVER DESI The Vancouver Multicultural Society’s 40th anniversary celebrations have hit a major snag after the city issued the group notice of eviction…
Continue Reading »

Mystic India: The World Tour takes the PNE stage Tuesday and runs until Sept. 1. Submitted photo.

Bollywood dance group Mystic India takes stage at PNE for one week only (w/gallery)

VANCOUVER DESI Internationally acclaimed Bollywood dance troupe Mystic India will be transporting Vancouver audiences overseas as it takes the PNE stage for one week only….
Continue Reading »

cen main.jpg

Woman in India survives hour-long battle with leopard, armed only with small agricultural tool

CEN NEWS A 54-year-old woman has astonished wildlife experts in India after she survived a terrifying hour-long battle with a hungry leopard. Widow Kamla Devi…
Continue Reading »

india

Indian minister refers to Dec. 16 fatal gang rape as “small incident” that hurt tourism

IANS New Delhi  – An Indian minister is embroiled in controversy after he referred to Delhi’s fatal Dec. 16 gang rape as a “small incident”…
Continue Reading »

common krait

Man bites, kills poisonous snake slithering towards him in bed

VANCOUVER DESI In a shocking incident, an Indian man bit and killed a venomous snake in his bed, according to the Daily Telegraph. Rai Singh, from…
Continue Reading »


Bollywood Latest

Bollywood

Bollywood singer Shreya Ghoshal set to light up Vancouver’s Queen Elizabeth Theatre

Bollywood singing sensation performance will include classics and contemporary ALMAS MEHERALLY VANCOUVER DESI You’ve heard her songs and seen her on reality shows. Now Bollywood…
Continue Reading »

Bollywood sex

Bikini-clad Poonam Pandey takes up ice bucket challenge

VANCOUVER DESI Bollywood’s bold and controversial actress Poonam Pandey has taken up the ALS ice bucket challenge in her signature scantily clad style. In a…
Continue Reading »

Interpol

Shah Rukh Khan roped in as Interpol ‘Turn Back Crime’ ambassador

IANS Lyon (France) – Internationally-renowned Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan has been roped in as an ambassador for Interpol’s “Turn Back Crime” campaign to promote…
Continue Reading »