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5-17-77 Vegetarian Pizza

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Film Identifier: F.2012-03-1798
Run Time
0h 12m 32s
Date Produced
May 17 1977
Newsreel footage of WBBM-TV Channel 2 reporter Bob Wallace's visit to the Family Corner Restaurant at 2901 W. Devon Ave., Chicago, IL.
The film opens on a hanging storefront sign that advertises the homely yet enigmatically-named "Family Corner Restaurant." Brief shots taken of the front window's hanging literature reveal that the establishment specializes in Kashmiri Indian cuisine, and a taped-up article featured in the North Town News exclaims that the restaurant has invented vegetarian pizza.

The scene shifts inside to a table of assorted vegetables where owner Surendra M. Rajmaira patiently shows a bemused Bob Wallace of WBBM-TV Channel 2 how to prepare the Family Corner's vegetarian pizza, complete with sweet potatoes, peas, spinach, 23 spices and three Indian cheeses. The film concludes as Wallace, Rajmaira and two other guests sit down for dinner and Rajmaira identifies some of the other dishes at the table, including rice pilau, taang kabob, tikka kabob, and Kashmiri naan. Wallace signs off, "This is Bob Wallace at the Family Corner India Restaurant on West Devon eating vegetarian pizza for Channel 2 news."

On a strip that would later be nicknamed "Little India," Rajmaira opened the Family Corner Restaurant's doors in 1975, just three years after Jagdish Khatwani opened India Sari Palace, credited as the first South Asian business on Devon Avenue. The Family Corner Restaurant advertised itself as the home of the "world's only vegetarian pizza with Himalayan spices with choice of 13 vegetables." Vegetable varieties included eggplant, okra, water chestnuts, bean sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower and bamboo shoots. Starting with a choice of one vegetable topping, a medium pizza was $3.60 and a large was $4.90.
Main Credits
Koza, Frank (is filmmaker)
Actors, Performers and Participants
Wallace, Bob (is reporter)
Related Place
Chicago (represents)