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Graduate Studies

Broken Punjabi Supper Club

A Punjabi-Canadian dining experience decolonizing South Asian food, identity, and emphasizing mindful alcohol consumption.

Broken Punjabi logo

Inspired by London-based supper clubs, Broken Punjabi puts mental health on the menu. It is a shared meal decolonizing South Asian food and identity, and emphasizes mindful alcohol consumption. The meal consists of dishes that meld Punjabi and Canadian cuisine together.

Through the Ontario low-risk alcohol drinking guidelines, we will discuss what is considered low-risk drinking and how this fits into a culturally appropriate framework.

In regards to consumption, our discussion will use a harm reduction framework in which we focus on positive change and on working with people without judgement, coercion, or discrimination. Particularly we will focus on the avoidance of stigma when engaging in these discussions and our ultimate goal will be to encourage an open discussion in which we recognize that the realities of class, racism, past trauma, and other social inequalities affect both people’s vulnerability to and capacity for effectively dealing with alcohol-related harm.We are aware of the sensitive nature of these discussions.

As two insider members of the community with intimate experience into the negative role that alcohol can play in ones life, we will create an empathetic, safe, and positive space for participants.

Expandable List

Our parents immigrated to Canada from Punjab in the early 90’s and spoiled us with the food of our ancestors.

As Punjabi-Canadian women, food and shared meals have been instrumental tools in helping us navigate our identities. Deconstructing our cultural background has also allowed us to insightfully think about our relationship with alcohol and the colonial history that is entrenched in the contemporary persistence of problem drinking in the community.

Broken Punjabi is a way to understand the particular ways in which social ills manifests in the South Asian community in a positive space.

The grant will be used to pay for a venue and food for 15-20 people.

Event 1: Supper Club

Serving as a sort of “pilot” event, this meal will cater to 15 attendees who will enjoy food provided by The Flyin’ Gnosh, a local Hamilton eatery that serves “unconventional Indian inspired cuisine.” In collaboration with their team, we will customize our menu along with crowd favourites that put a twist on classic Indian cuisine, focusing on food regional to Punjab in particular.
The focus of this event will be understanding what “problem drinking” is and how it manifests in our lives.

Event 2: Supper Club

The second edition of the supper club will cater to a slightly larger crowd (20 individuals) who will indulge in a meal curated by our team in collaboration with The Flyin’ Gnosh.
The focus of this event will be enabling behaviour (what it looks like and how we can confront it)

In order to prepare for an event, we need to:

  • Book venues
  • Create a menu with The Flyin’ Gnosh
  • Advertise our event through flyers and social media.

Operations lead: Manvinder Gill, Religious Studies, August 2020

Treasurer: Jasmeet Chagger, Nursing, August 2020

We hope to create a positive space for South Asians in the McMaster and Hamilton community to discuss their shared experiences, engaging in topics that are often left out of the conversation due to the stigma they carry.

May 1 to October 1 2019

  • Contact venues and caterers
  • Plan Menu
  • Advertise through flyers and social media

First event: October 4, 2019 (Maybe November 1st?)

October 1 – February 1 2020

  • Contact venues and caterers
  • Plan Menu (main, dessert, drink)