Every day at midday, office workers travel to Nepal - or at least their taste buds do when they visit the Hungry Buddha at the Moor Market.
The stall was opened by Dev Gurung a year ago, and although Sheffield folk were at first a little reluctant to give this exotic food a try they now can not get enough.
Proud Dev said: “We have got ourselves a bit of a reputation now in that people say come down at noon to get your lunch or risk there being nothing left and you being disappointed. I never expected this to happen, but it’s wonderful.”
The stall is open daily from noon until all the fresh food Dev and his dedicated team have spent the morning preparing has sold out - and that is usually at around 2.30pm.
The traditional food on offer is rice, dhal, pickle and a choice of curry - all freshly cooked and ready to take away in a matter of minutes for between £4 and £5, depending on the dish.
“On average, we make between 50 and 65 dishes a day,” added Dev.
“I come in a morning and buy what fresh produce I can from the veg stalls in the market and then get cooking. We offer a range of different dishes. Typically, we have two meat curries and two vegetarian and vegan ones as I have found that this is what the customers want.”
Dev, who prides himself on offering traditional Nepalese food for an affordable price, is joined in the kitchen by Loki Magai while Ziya Gokmen serves the customers.
He said: “I think I offer good food at a good price. It’s subtly spiced but very flavoursome. The best compliment for me is when people say they like my food, and then when they come back. If you get repeat customers then you know you are doing something right.
“Some people also say my food brings back fond memories of travelling around Nepal which is always nice to hear.”
Dev, who is originally from Nepal but moved to South Yorkshire in 2002 after meeting his wife Jan, opened the stall after craving some home comforts.
He said:“When I first came over here, everything was new and I was missing my mum’s cooking so I decided to start making these dishes myself.
“My food is not quite like my mum’s though - nothing will ever be quite the same, because I have realised that food is an experience - it’s also about the place you were at the time and the way you are feeling.
“I’ve had to adapt and twist the dishes according to what customers want, but that is the key to having a successful business. I’m very proud of where I am now.”
Dev, who has a seven-year-old daughter Eshani, added: “My goal would be to make the ultimate comfort food.”
Hungry Buddha can be found in the food court at the market. It is open from Monday to Saturday from noon until the food sells out - which is usually around 2.30pm. For more information, visit www.hungrybuddha.co.uk site and alsowww.facebook.com/ILoveNepaleseFood site. A new website will be coming soon.