We have a HOP logo!

Thanks to Bank Phongsak of Inner Design Studio for helping us develop our new logo. We started with four concept options:

and chose to develop the fourth to come up with our final design. We wanted to show the ‘horn’ and give it a ‘street’ feel which we think is achieved. And although we liked the 2nd and 3rd a lot (and we will be using elements of these two to some degree) we felt 4 was more adaptable for use on packaging, flyers and website. So here is the final design:

(c) Horn Ok Please Copyright 2011

Thanks everyone who gave us their feedback during the development stage. Much appreciated 🙂

(Logo copy rights belongs to Horn Ok Please)

Food Blogs

While surfing the web this morning I came these two blogs about food, restaurants and markets. Check them out and feel free to post your favourites too.

http://cheesenbiscuits.blogspot.com/
http://theskinnybib.com/

Trading News


Time has flown since the last post about our first day of trade. 2 months and 12 days to be exact. Since then we have been trading most weekends (except for two in October) at the Boiler House and attracting a growing number of customers. The menu has been evolving over the time to keep up with customer feedback, for instance ever weekend we have at least 5 customers asking about Pani Puri so it was introduced 2 weeks back. The next addition will most likely be Pav Bhaji.

Our current menu includes:
Pani Puri
Bhel Puri
Samosa Chaat
Aloo Tikki
Paneer Skewers
Moong Dal Chilla (Dosa)
While VadaPav has been put on hold we may introduce it down the line.
The feedback from customers so far has been a mixture of ‘is this Indian food?’ to ‘finally chaat in London’. This has confirmed to us that we are on the right track in taking Londoners on a journey beyond the generic curry house fare they are used to.
So what next? Well we will be continuing trading at the Boiler House for the time being and will be introducing a week day pitch very soon. So keep checking back. We will also be launching our website soon with potentially an on-line shopping element and will also be opening up for catering requests.

FEAST YOUR EYES AND TASTEBUDS

Its been almost 10 days since our last entry. The time has been spent fine tuning the concept, menu and a lot of form filling (and I mean a LOT of form filling) with some luck…on Friday we are meeting with one of the organisers at Brick Lane about a pitch at the Sunday Upmarket. Fingers crossed.


THE OVERALL EXPERIENCE IS MORE THAN JUST THE FOOD

In the previous post we have explained a bit about our concept of brining Indian street food to the streets of London and we have had a chance to develop it further.  As we really want to give our customers a complete experience, as if they were in the streets of Mumbi or Delhi, we think this should be about more than just the food and so we have been looking into how the stall can be set out to reflect the name ‘Horn Ok Please’ and give the experience of eating hot ‘straight out off the fire’ food on the street. As such we are working on designing a stall that will look like the back of a lorry (colourful, lots of artwork, quirky, different) with area along the side to stand and savour the taste, smell and sights of what will be a vibrant and busy stall (will upload some designs soon but in the mean time here are some images of lorries and Indian Street Area sourced from the internet to give you a taste). 


THE FOOD


So what will we actually be selling? After discussing with Petra at Eat.st and talking among ourselves we have decided to start off with a handful of staple Indian street fare with the intention of adding more as we go on.


Vada Pau


Vada Pau: Horn Ok Please


Battered spiced potato patties served in a soft bun with butter and lashings of tasty chutneys – India’s very own burger popular on the streets of Western India.

Sev Usal



Sev Usal: Horn Ok Please

Chunky Pea and Potato Stew served topped with sev (Indian chickpea crisps), chopped onion, green and tamarind chutney and chopped coriander. A feast for the eyes and taste buds.

Bhel



Bhel: Horn Ok Please

Street food from North and West India. Made using sev of various sizes and textures, tomato, potato, green and tamarind chutney, fresh coriander and red onions. Pomegranate garnish provides a twist on the traditional recipe while intensifying the colours.

Potato and Sago Pops

Potato and Sago Pops: Horn Ok Please

These are crispy on the outside and moist in the middle ‘chunks’ that we will be serving with a masala tomato sauce.

These are a generally called Sago Vada and are served on beaches and streets throughout India. 

Chai


Chai: Horn Ok Please

Made with fragrant spices (cardamom, cloves, cinnamon and ginger) this is the ultimate winter warmer and a pick me up for any morning.

This is a staple all over India with some regions using more milk while others add different flavours. Our version is made using a combination of methods.

Masala Soda


Masala Soda: Horn Ok Please

Made with fresh lemon and lime and mixed with ginger ale and fresh mint leaves. This is a refreshing drink that accompanies any meal.
So hopefully that has given an overview of what to expect from visiting us and for those people who are looking forward to rediscovering tastes they have been longing for since they last visited India I am sure we will meet your expectations.

First official working day for Horn Ok Please…



Sandhya and I have been working on this project for quite a while now and always wanted to launch Horn Ok Please on 15th August as it’s quite a significant day in Indian history.

We got our freedom from 9-5 Jobs because of Horn Ok Please, so it’s quite significant for us too.

They say freedom doesn’t come cheap, hell they are right! we’ve been taking it easy over the last couple of weeks but as it was launch day today for Horn Ok Please (Not trading day) we shifted up a few gears.

We had our day almost planed, we were going to practice our skills in preparing BhelPuri, design and start the blog and to end the day on a higher note we had a meeting planned with Petra from eat.st.

This was was our second attempt towards the perfection of BhelPuri ( here’s a wiki article explaining what exactly

BhelPuri is: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhelpuri)

The image on right is the outcome of our team work this afternoon. it looked great it tasted great (just after a few tweaks as Sandhya prefers it more spicy) and the presentation was great.

After wonderfully preparing BhelPuri I am excited about all the street food varieties available on Horn Ok Please menu (coming soon). Also we are more than happy to borrow your taste buds to rate our food and suggest any improvements, if you are willing to lend us your taste palate for few hours let us know and we will tell you the place and date/time.

A full stomach and refreshing chai shifted our creative minds to overdrive and this blog was created. It was quite an effort to decide on image and layout for the blog, after a quick brain storming session we decided to use our ‘Day’s Best Photo’ taken by none other than Sandhya and her Super Samsung mobile. To be honest i am not sure if it’s an amazing photo or an amazing BhelPuri. You Decide.

It was almost time for us to meet Petra from eat.st, people who don’t know who Petra and eat.st are do check them out on www.eat.st.

Meeting was quite informative as Petra shared some of her experiences and gave us quite a lot of invaluable information regarding certificates and checks. Unfortunately we couldn’t take her any samples – next time for sure.

That’s it day was over! ( for your information it ended at 19:15, first day at Horn Ok Please was definitely not 9-5 ! actually i am still writing this blog and current time stamp on my computer is 1:47 AM so it’s still on)

We are looking forward to countless of exciting days like this will keep the blog updated with all the exciting happening in and around Hork Ok Please.

Goodnight, Adios, Fir Milenge!

Happy Independence Day

We had long ago established that the 15th of August would be
the launch date for what would become Horn
Ok Please
.

In truth it took a long time to come up with this particular
trading name. It began life as Aloo Gobi, followed by Chai Chaat Chat, Roadside
Romeo, MiChai etc etc. Who would have thought coming with a name would be such
an ongoing point of discussion between Gaurav (G) and me, but eventually we
settled on Horn Ok Please. We wanted a name that was synonymous with and
reflected Indian Street life and more importantly Indian Street Food. After all
we are bringing Indian Street food to the Streets of London.
So what does Horn Ok Please actually mean? Here is a Wiki
link that will explain it all a lot better than I ever can: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Horn_OK_Please
From the beginning we set it as our goal to bring forward
the best of street food experience from all corners of India – which sees families
sharing plates of hot and spicy snacks on the beach in South India, business
men grabbing a sweet cup of chai on their way to work in Pune, students
gathered around enjoying a cool drink under the hot sun in Delhi or the secret
couple in Mumbai sharing a coffee and plate of snacks in-between work and
returning home.
So with the name in hand and the concept clear in our minds,
G and I have been spending the last couple of weeks trying out various menu
items on willing friends, contacting market stalls throughout London and getting
our licences and certificates in place. So watch this space as we develop our
ideas (and cooking techniques) all in the name of Horn Ok Please.

Jai Hind