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What is a tiffin ?


What Is a Tiffin?



The Tiffin Box can trace it roots back to 1811 in India. Whether it be the thousands of 'tiffin-wallahs' distributing these with amazing accuracy or a caring mother packing these for her childrens lunch, they are now an essential part of everyday life in India. This same idea can be used here, and we aim to provide good quality tiffins at an affordable price.


It is said an Indian entrepreneur, Mahadeo Havaji Bacche, invented the tiffin distribution business back in 1890 for Bombay's growing working population. By the 1950s the tiffin-wallahs were delivering some 200,000 dabbas or lunch-boxes a day. The origins of the word tiffin can be traced back to 1811. A dictionary of Anglo-Indian words suggest several possible origins (the Arabic word tafunnun - "diversion" - and the Chinese ch'ih-fan - "eat rice").


The Traditional Tiffin is made out of stainless Steel, and is usually round. It can come in a number of sizes, from the super small, one tier Tiffins, which are useful for snacks, to the gigantic, 5 or even 6 tier tiffins, which are more suited to big picnics for the family. Regardless of the size, the tiffin always has the same simple but effective locking mechanism and whilst not meant to be water tight, they do a pretty good job of keeping liquids in.


Tiffins are dishwasher, and freezer safe and their uses are only limited by your imagination. Just to give you a couple of ideas, a tiffin can be used for camping as it can be used to carry food, and then placed directly on a campfire to warm it up given its made of stainless steel. I have also heard of people of buying a three tier tiffin, and then freezing water in the second tier and storing food in the other two, with the ice in the middle two, keeping the other two compartments cool!


Please send us any ideas or innovative ways you use tiffins and if you have any pictures of tiffins you have pimped up, let us know by visting our "Pimp My Tiffin" page.


Please take a look at our product catalogue for our full range of Tiffins and Dabbas:

Tiffin Box Catalogue - Download PDF

Dabba Catalogue - Download PDF

Handpainted Tiffin Catalogue - Download PDF