Q&A Profile: Mindi Keane, Founder of Mama Nagi’s

Guaranteed Irish member Mama Nagi’s was established in 2015 from Mindi’s home in South Dublin with the idea of bringing authentic raw fresh chilli pastes made from popular Indian recipes to the Irish market. This concept and idea stemmed from when Mindi returned from the UK with her mother’s (the REAL Mama Nagi) hot Punjabi chilli paste.  

Mama Nagi’s Keralan Coconut Chilli Pastes recently won a Gold Star at the Great Taste Awards 2019, a Gold & Silver award at the Blas na hEireann 2018, three awards at FreeFrom Ireland  2018 & was also featured on the Irish Dragons Den 2017. From late 2019 Mindi Keane has been on national TV, appearing on Ireland AM breakfast show, Virgin Media as the morning cooking feature with Simon Devlin amongst others.   

Mindi Keane discusses her mouth-watering product range, the rising demand for free-from products, her favourite recipe, and much more.

Can you tell us a bit about Mama Nagi’s?  

Mama Nagi’s is a sole trading business, established by Mindi Keane in 2015. From her home in South Dublin Mindi had the idea to bring authentic Indian sauces and pastes to the Irish market. The products are made from popular Indian recipes, which have been handed down through generations, culminating in a rich culinary tradition that has followed her family from India through Uganda to the UK and now to Ireland. Mama Nagi’s begin trading at local food markets and is now stocked in some of Ireland’s biggest supermarket chains. 

Mama Nagi’s, named after Mindi’s mother, is now in its sixth year and offers a product range of four sauces including; Exotic Coconut Sauce and Fruity Tomato Sauce, and three pastes including; Hot Punjabi Chili Paste and Bengali Sweet Chili Paste. Packed with zesty flavours guaranteed to satisfy the taste buds, the products are made with no artificial flavourings or additives, only with the finest fresh raw herbs & spices and are 100% Vegetarian & Vegan, ticking all the boxes for a healthier lifestyle. The range includes mild, medium, and hot varieties to cater for all pallets. 

Mama Nagi’s partners with Gill Toal from Genovese Foods, Dublin 7 to produce the pastes and Roy Gee from G’s Gourmet Jams from Co. Laois to produce the sauces. 

What are the challenges that you face in your business and how do you work to overcome them particularly in the current climate?  

I have had to make many adjustments in recent months, one of which was taking my cooking classes online. I have been offering cooking classes, “from my kitchen to yours” via Zoom. I am also selling Indian spice tins offering people everything they need to get into basic Indian cooking. 

Have you seen an increased demand for healthier foods in Ireland in recent years? 

 Yes, I have seen an increase in healthy low-calorie foods in Ireland in recent years, with the introduction of Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Vegan and Vegetarian options becoming more readily available in supermarkets, retailers and now cafes and restaurants are too following this healthier clean eating trend.  

What is your favourite dish to make with Mama Nagi’s products? 

I use Mama Nagi’s pastes on everything from cheese toasties to curries and marinadesMy all-time favourite dish to make with Mama Nagi’s traditional Punjabi chilli pastes is chickpea curry. It’s so simple and easy to make and requires very few ingredients. It’s great if you’re looking for a healthy and nutritious meal on a budget. Sometimes I like to add in potatoes or spinach for that little something extra. 

What made you decide to become a member of Guaranteed Irish? 

I decided to become a member of Guaranteed Irish because of the support and brand awareness offered, which is necessary for a small start-up businesses.  

What can we expect for Mama Nagi’s in the future? 

The future of Mama Nagi’s is to uphold the brands intergrity of delivering a traditional and auntentic indian culinary experience, which is accesible to all. It is also important for the brand to continue using local where possible and promote healthy eating by only using quality ingredients with no additives. In terms of growth in to other product catogories and additional flavours to existing lines, watch this space! Each day offers a new adventure on this exciting journey.  



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