Worksop: Entrepreneur swaps dentist for kitchen

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A Worksop entrepreneur has been cooking up batches of homemade spicy Indian snacks from his grandmother’s special receipe.

Kumar Kolar, of Gateford, a former London dentist of nine years, has been selling his lentil-based Karkli treats since launching the product in August 2013.

He makes the crunchy and savoury snacks with his mother in her kitchen and then flogs them at beer, music, film and food festivals - including the Sheffield Food Festival last weekend.

The vegetarian bites, priced between £1.50 and £2, have also proved popular in real ale pubs across Yorkshire, including the Sheffield Tap.

“Being a dentist was a nice job, a very satisfying job but after a while I just wanted a new challenge,” Kumar said.

“I was just sat at home one evening and I just decided to do it and got working on it straight away.”

“It was a receipe that I was aware of since I was young so I just thought ‘why not try and take it further.’”

“At first I was a bit wary because although you may think something is really nice, it is not always necessarily the same for someone else.”

“So far we have had some really positive feedback and are involved with around 20 pubs, festivals and independent cinemas, including some in London.”

“We took them to one festival in London and we sold out before the end, it was a bit of a joke.”

The packaging - with the strapline ‘Chomp on this! Handmade, crunchy, savoury snacks made with love’ was designed by students and Kumar has big ambitions for the next 12 months.

He said: “Ideally we want to be a snack to go with craft beer in pubs.”

“So far I think that has proved successful and that is something we will look to develop.”

With just Kumar producing the gluten free Karkli with his mum in their small kitchen, he is keen for them to their own premises to work from and to be employ more staff.

“The first year has been very exciting but we need to push it along further,” Kumar added.

“We would aim to get Karkli in most pubs in the next six months.”

“We then need to get our very own bigger premises and look to get more staff because me and mother are under a lot of strain as it is.”

“It is all about quality and we could make more snacks.”