Market brings Indian food to De Pere

Astha Grocery and Gifts opened in December. The owner says he wanted to give people of Asian descent a place to shop for food that reminds them of home. (WLUK/Gabrielle Mays)

DE PERE (WLUK) -- There's a new grocery store in De Pere that offers a variety of ingredients to make Indian food.

Veggies and spices are just a few ingredients you can find to make an authentic Indian dish.

Prakash Lalchandani owns Astha Grocery and Gifts downtown De Pere.

He says Astha means hope and faith. His store has been open for nearly three months.

"The community on the whole has been very welcoming and it encourages me to bring more avenues and bring more variety," said Prakash Lalchandani.

He grew up in India and has lived in big cities all across the word.

He considered New York City his home away from home until he decided to move to De Pere to be closer to family.

"In New York, we were selling these watches. We would design and manufacture these," he said.

From watchmaker to grocery store owner, Lalchandani says his store incorporates food from all across the Asian continent.

"If you want to have, for example, Thai food, we have Thai curries and Thai coconuts or if you want to have Korean foods also. We have Japanese foods," he said.

When asked why he decided to open the store, Lalchandani says it's a way to give people a taste of home.

"The need that I use the heat from the professionals working from our country working here in De Pere. Especially the IT engineers, you know, working in the back offices, the doctors who work in the health industry. They all wanted a decent store," he said.

The store also offers kids a place to play while their parents shop, "And somebody to watch over the kids too." he said.

Even if you didn't grow up on Asian cuisine, all are welcome.

"We give advice, we give suggestions. We have recipes ready," he said.

Click here for more information about the store.

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