Itihaas donates to Saltersgate School

Matin Khan, who runs two restaurants on the outskirts of Edinburgh, has been named the UK’s top curry chef by the industry’s trade magazine.

Executive Chef of Itihaas in Dalkeith and The Radhuni in Loanhead, he was given the accolade on Sunday 15 October in front of an audience of 500 at the Curry Life Awards at the Marriott Grosvenor House Hotel in London’s Mayfair.

In a double triumph for Scotland, Radhuni was awarded the title of the UK’s best curry restaurant.

Since Matin opened the 80 seat Itihaas in 2007 its titles have included Scotland’s Curry Chef of the Year, Best South Asian Restaurant, and Restaurant of the Year in the Midlothian and East Lothian Chamber of Commerce Awards.

His son Habibur, who accepted the award on his behalf, has managed Radhuni since it opened in 2011. At the age of 23 in 2019 he became the youngest person to win a major award in the British Curry Awards.

The audience at the awards, which celebrate the best of the UK’s multi-billion-pound curry industry, included Minister for London Paul Scully, former UK Health Secretary Baroness Virginia Bottomley, her MP husband Sir Peter (longest serving Member of the House of Commons), four other MPs and Lord Karan Bilimoria, founder of Cobra Beer and a former President of the Confederation of British Industry. The event was hosted by ITV news presenter Lucrezia Millarini.

A chef for over 40 years, Matin was born in Bangladesh.  After his family moved to Cambridge when he was a teenager, he began honing his cooking skills in the family home.

“It’s a great honour to be described as the finest curry chef in the United Kingdom,” he commented. “There are so many wonderful chefs working in thousands of restaurants all over the country that I am truly humbled and very proud. My emphasis has always been on developing authentic recipes and working with the finest kitchen and front of house staff.”

The 120-seat Radhuni (its name means ‘passionate cook’) is one of only three Indian-style restaurants in Scotland to have been awarded an AA Rosette for culinary excellence.

Regularly placed in the British Curry Awards’ “Hot 100”, it was named Scottish Curry Restaurant of the Year in 2020 and 2021 and in July this year took the same title in the Scottish Restaurant Awards.

Habibur Khan commented: “These are remarkable achievements for my father and the restaurants he established. His legacy is assured. Helped by my father’s guidance, the team at Radhuni have worked tirelessly and with great skill to create a constantly first class dining experience. We are overwhelmed by this latest honour.”

Curry Life magazine reaches 10,000 Indian, Bangladeshi, Sri Lankan, Nepalese and Pakistani restaurants serving millions of customers a year.

The ‘curry industry’ is said to account for two thirds of all eating out in the UK. Indian-style restaurants get through more than 200,000 tonnes of rice a year.

Originally published in the Winter 2014 edition of Issuu.com.

Saltersgate School scores a double with Midlothian business

itihaas-school-donation-winter-2014
Matin with Cheryl Simon and with his Itihaas team and their trophy for Family Business of the Year

 

Leading restaurateur Matin Khan served up a double helping for Midlothian’s Saltersgate School when he matched the proceeds of a raffle at the region’s business awards.

Members and guests of Midlothian and East Lothian Chamber of Commerce raised £865 for Friends of Saltersgate School (FOSS) at their Enterprise Awards Dinner at The Brunton in Musselburgh.

Matin, who runs the multi award-winning Itihaas in Dalkeith and Radhuni in Loanhead, was so impressed with a speech by Stephen Buggy, the school’s Deputy Head, that he offered to double the sum on the spot.

Saltergate has about 120 pupils from Midlothian, East Lothian and Edinburgh with a wide spectrum of disabilities. FOSS fundraises for specialist equipment and respite care.

Cheryl Simon of FOSS said: “We are very grateful to Matin for his very generous donation and to the Chamber of Commerce for making us its charity of the night.

“Budget constraints limit funding for the most up to date and specialised equipment which make a huge difference to pupils’ development.”

The charity is also appealing for local people and companies to offer their skills in areas like Website creation, leaflets printing and fundraising activities as well as work placements for pupils.

Matin said: “I was delighted to be able to help, especially after learning more about the splendid work done by Saltersgate staff and volunteers.”

There was good news for Matin, too, when Itihaas was awarded joint Best Family Business, with East Links Holiday Park at Dunbar. The category is for “established family businesses sustained success across a broad range of measures.”

Itihaas is operated by Matin, recently named Scotland’s Curry Chef of the Year, helped by his sons Mujibur (20) and Habibur (18), and his wife Majada.

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Indian Restaurant Edinburgh

17-19 Eskbank Road, Dalkeith, EH22 1HD | 0131 663 9800

Monday – Thursday || 12pm-2pm || 5pm-10:30pm
Friday – Sunday || 12pm-2pm || 4:30pm-10:30pm
Closed Tuesday

17-19 Eskbank Road, Dalkieth, EH22 1HD
0131 663 9800

Monday – Thursday || 12pm-2pm || 5pm-10:30pm
Friday – Sunday || 12pm-2pm || 4:30pm-10:30pm
Closed Tuesday

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