The AWIB 1999 "Entrepreneurial Achievement Award Winner" Julie Sahni



Julie Sahni
Teacher, Food Historian and Culinary Author/Journalist


32 years ago, Julie Sahni came to New York City from India to attend the Columbia University School of Architecture. After obtaining her masters, she was an architect and city planner for 10- years and during that time, she started taking cooking classes to become a better hostess. It was soon obvious that Julie was not just any student and had a gift for teaching and cooking. She started to teach cooking and after the third class, her "Julie Sahni School of Indian Cooking" was recognized by the New York Times as a gem among culinary schools. Food soon became more than just a hobby and she excelled in bringing the culture and heritage of India and integrating it into her classes.

In 1979, Julie, only months away from being vested for a pension at her City job, quit to follow her passion. She realized that she had found her niche in food and she would pursue her dream. Fortunately for us, the rest of the world recognized her talents and she has become a top food expert in the US.

In 1980, Julie published the first of her 5 cookbooks, "Classic Indian Cooking" (William Morrow, 1980), which is considered one of the authoritative books on Indian Cuisine. That was followed by "Classic Indian Vegetarian & Grain Cooking" (William Morrow, 1985). "Moghul Microwave" (US-Morrow, 1990); "Savoring Spices & Herbs: Recipe Secrets of Flavor, Aroma and Color" (Morrow, 1996); and "Julie Sahni's Introduction to Indian Cooking"(Ten Speed Press, 1998). She is presently working on her sixth book, which is about curries. Her books have received numerous awards and, combined with her many articles in major publications such as the NY Times, the LA Times, the Washington Post, Bon Appetit, and Food & Wine, she has earned the reputation of "culinary authority" in the United States.

Julie's life is about food. Besides teaching food, she frequently lectures on food and her engagements include the Smithsonian and other venerable venues. She has also been a food consultant for Time-Life Books, General Foods and the Joy of Cooking. A guest chef, she has been seen on Food TV, taped a series of CHEF THE JOUR and has donated her time to benefit Meals on Wheels, March of Dimes and other worthy causes.

A renaissance person, she rounds out her food niche, by manufacturing a line of natural spice blends under Julie Sahni's Savory Spices & Herbs, Ltd. And, once a year, under Julie Sahni's Gourmet Tours, she takes food enthusiasts on a highly acclaimed cultural and gastronomic tour of India. Julie uses food as a vehicle to bridge the gap between Asian cultures and the west and brings Asian cultures alive with her stimulating writings and talks. She has been featured in major publications throughout the country and in 1998, the International Association of Culinary Professionals selected her among the three top cooking teachers from over 10,000 teachers globally for the "Award of Excellence."

When asked about what advice she would give to women, she stated "Remember, if there is a problem, there has to be a solution. Therefore, never accept no for an answer".

Julie Sahni lives in Brooklyn Heights and has a 20 year old son.




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