-The Owners Story-
When Kochai Farhad was growing up in Kabul, Afghanistan in the 1950's she never imagined that one day she would be an ambassador of cuisine on the other side of the world! As a young girl, Kochai excelled in her studies. Pursuing her goal to make a difference in the world, she was educated as a teacher and taught high shcool physics and mathematics to ninth and tenth grade students for seven years in Kabul, before her big dreams took her to America.
In May 1987, Kochai immigrated to the United States to join her family. "I am like someone who is always looking for treasure," Kochai says. "Just tell me that there is treasure, and I will not stop digging until I find it!" Kochai immediately enrolled in community college ESL and business classes, where she quickly learned English, and in 1993, became an American citizen.
Her first venture was running a small retail business for ten years in Garden Grove. But, one day while having dinner together, Kochai and her brother Omar, a professional pilot in Orange County, both realized that they had an idea. They both envisioned a venture that would bring something special to their community.
"My mother has always prepared the most mouth-watering and amazing food. We suddenly had renewed appreciation for the dishes that we had eaten together as a family. Omar and I talked about the fact that while many forms of fast food are easily available in theis country, they are often full of fat and additives that promote disease and health problems. The food we grew up eating was full of flavorful seasonings that made it possible not to use unhealthy fats --- we suddenly realized that we had something special we could offer."
With a passion to share the culinary traditions of their heritage, Kochai sold her retail store and moved into an 800 square-foot location in the city of Orange, CA. She and her brother, with help from family (including Kochai's son, Joseph), developed a menu with recipes honed from her mother's family favorites, using no butter, cheese or sugar, only fresh ingredients and traditional Mediterranean spices for the savory marinades and sauces.
Amazing Kabob House opened in the city of Orange in March 2003, only three months later. Originally established to offer traditional Mediterranean food to the mainstream American market, the wide-appeal of a healthy Afghan-influenced menu was enthusiastically received and became the place to enjoy a delicious selection of Afghan/Persian-influenced Mediterranean fare. Patrons travel from Riverside, Los Angeles, and San Bernardino counties, as well as the local area, to enjoy this unique and reasonably priced cuisine.
In November 2005, The Amazing Kabob House moved to Brea, and is now the first Mediterranean food franchise offered by Francorp, a leader in franchising opportunities. "I want to invite women to do what I have done," said Kochai. "There is nothing as satisfying as bringing appetizing food to people. It is so rewarding to have your own restaurant, and so gratifying to know you are providing people with food choices that are healthy and freshly made."
"Women can make a difference in not just their own lives, in their communities, by owning their own business. It takes a lot of hard work, but nothing is impossible. Some of the most important times that people share together are over meals. We talk, celebrate, dicuss our days, and build relationships. Owning a restaurant is the perfect career for a woman who loves to nurture her own family. I encourage all women to explore this career. THer is nothing like it!"
The Amazing Kabob House is currently growing and improving daily in their Brea location. But a lot more will be seen soon!