by Iqra Akhoon

SRINAGAR: In a world filled with stories of perseverance and passion, one remarkable woman’s culinary skills have captured the hearts and appetites of people from Kashmir to America.

Ufaq Matoo, a female chef whose journey is as inspiring as the aromatic dishes she creates, a woman with a master’s degree in computers, embarked on a different path after her marriage. Her heart craved the art of cooking, a passion that could not be silenced. She left the world of computers behind and set her sights on culinary horizons.

Her adventure took her across the globe to the United States, where she transformed her dream into reality. Ufaq Matoo established her own business, Uffi’s Kitchen, a beacon of authentic Kashmiri flavours for the Kashmiri diaspora in America.  With time, the kitchen expanded.

Ufaq employed a team of five talented chefs from Mexico. The incredible part is she trained them to cook Kashmiri cuisine, preserving the authenticity of each dish.

Amongst her tasty offerings, Harrissa stands out as a fan favourite. This renowned Kashmiri delicacy has a devoted following, a testament to her culinary expertise.

She hails from a family with a strong political background, but she chose to carve her own path as a successful entrepreneur, now, a mother of three daughters, all proud citizens of the United States.

Ufaq’s journey has not been without health battles. She faced a daunting diagnosis of cancer but emerged victorious. Her story is a testament to the unbeatable spirit of human will.

Today, her venture earns a substantial profit annually. Her commitment to preserving the heritage of Kashmiri cuisine and her inspiring journey from computer science to culinary artistry is a beacon of hope and resilience for all.

Uffi’s Kitchen is more than just a restaurant; it’s a tribute to tradition, a taste of Kashmir, and a testament to the extraordinary journey of a remarkable woman.


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