Kaati rolls (or their cosmopolitan cousin, the Bombay Frankie) are getting ubiquitous in big-town India. At is simplest, the Kaati (or kathi) roll is just cooked pieces of meat or paneer or vegetables wrapped in a roti. Fast to make and simple to eat, they have the potential to to do to Indian food what the Salwar-Kameez did to Indian women’s clothing – provide a simple, functional, albeit not-so-attractive option to the beautiful, but elaborate Indian saree (actually I think the salwar is a deeply inelegant garment – but that is another story).
There are efforts on to try to develop a major brand in Kaati rolls (something on the lines of a McDonalds for Hamburgers). Will it work? Ok, let me ask you another question. How many major brands of Salwar-Kameez manufacturers do you know (similar to the positioning taken by Levis for blue jeans)? None. Does it mean that the opportunity for branded Salwars has not been exploited? Or does it mean that branded kaati rolls could be very tough to do? I dont know – do you?