Masala y Maiz

At the intersection of Mexico & India

Masala y Maiz is a restaurant by Chefs Norma Listman & Saqib Keval exploring the migration of ingredients, cooking techniques & food cultures between Mexico, South Asia & East Africa.

About us

Chef Norma Listman

Born in Mexico, her practice as both chef and artist begin with deep investigation and research of traditional cooking methods and ingredients. Her current focus is the sustainable growth and use of nixtamal & Méxican maiz, a passion Norma inherited from her father’s life work. Norma’s bold vision for projects where art and food intersect create a historical consciousness that leaves you soul searching for a deeper understanding of who we are, what we eat and how we eat it. Norma’s culinary excellence was shaped by working at Camino in Oakland, San Francisco’s Delfina Group and Charles Phan’s restaurant group amongst others.

Chef Saqib Keval

Born in the U.S. of Indian farmers from East Africa, his food is an act of love, grounded in history, and conveyed through flavor and craft. His work as a chef, researcher and activist are reflected in his diverse menus and rich flavors. In his recipes you find traces of his people’s migration stories and flavors that make you reflect on your own. His food is a testament of the endless potential for joy and community found around the table. Saqib trained in kitchens in the south of France and, more significantly, in his grandmothers' kitchen. He started the People’s Kitchen Collective, a food, art and social justice chef’s collective to create good food spaces accessible to marginalized people.


About our work:

Norma Listman & Saqib Keval met in the kitchen tracing notes of ancestral recipes and community food-ways. As chefs they have committed themselves to creating unique dining experiences rooted in using food as a means to tell complex stories of food migration through beautifully curated meals. As Masala y Maiz, Norma and Saqib research the migration of spices, chiles, ingredients and cooking techniques between Mexico and South Asia. Their dinners menus present unique recipes and stories that bring people to the table to reflect the depth and history of ancestral foods. These are meals to celebrate the good life, and the many ways migration, flavors, and spices have created our cultures.

Chefs Norma & Saqib are based out of Mexico City but travel internationally giving lectures, food demonstrations and hosting pop ups featuring their signature foods.

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