The Halal Plug – Connecting muslims to a plethora of leading halal restaurants through the ramblings of a hungry mind.

I’m 25 years old, a PhD student in liver immunology, newly married and London’s biggest foodie… I love travelling, eating and discovering new restaurants. My cooking leaves a lot to be desired but my mother in law is currently training me to improve my culinary skills!

My love for food is no secret. My heritage is Indian (Sindhi), however my mother and father grew up in Singapore and Vietnam. My mixed background has meant that I have been exposed to a variety of food and cuisine from a young age, and despite being mocked for my frequent inability to finish an entire meal, I still enjoy trying every type of cuisine possible!

Initially when I reverted to Islam over 6 years ago, I found the halal food barrier incredibly frustrating. I was studying at University of Bristol at a time where halal meat wasn’t readily available. My inexperience meant that I would readily indulge in anything halal I could get my hands on, which usually consisted of a greasy kebab or an international buffet serving poor quality food.

Eventually my frustration at not finding good halal food turned to curiosity as I began to search a bit harder for local halal cuisines in my area. I began to discover some of the ‘hidden gems’ Bristol had to offer, and came to the realisation that halal food extended far beyond the local Turkish kebab shop. One example is Afro Delight, a small family run Jamaican restaurant in St. Paul’s. This was my first experience with Caribbean cuisine (it has since shut down unfortunately).

During my weekend breaks over the last 7 years I was constantly exploring and discovering new halal restaurants and cuisines as I travelled to cities such as Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham and Scotland. During this time I enjoyed researching where to grab brunch or dinner from a cuisine of my choice.

After studying in Bristol, I moved to Birmingham to study my Masters and PhD, where I have lived for the last four years. During this time I have well and truly discovered everything this city has to offer in terms of international halal cuisine, and although my time here is coming to an end, a little coaxing from my best friend gave me the courage to now write about my culinary experiences both within and outside of the UK.