One Life Kitchen



Annu Khot is an Attorney turned Entrepreneur, Proud Mom, South Asian and A lifelong Learner.

Over the past 14 years, my career has done a complete 180°. I went from a life of dry legal jargon (yes, I’m a recovering attorney) to the unpredictable—but incredibly fulfilling—world of entrepreneurship. I’m now the Managing Partner of Rely Services, a professional services firm that provides outsourcing solutions to commercial and governmental firms. We have 250+ employees, and our commitment to excellence has enabled rapid growth. In addition, I’m an angel investor—and recently made investments in the healthcare and cannabis industries. I’m perpetually on the hunt for my next investment! I’m an industry-agnostic investor—as long as there’s a strong business case, I’m in.

When in the Office

FASHION STYLE? Something always sophisticated, chic, and classy. Structured bags, tailored pieces, solid colors. When in doubt I always go with White. Very minimalistic when it comes to accessories although belts are my weaknesses. Red lips are a must. 

COFFEE OR TEA? Dairy free Indian Chai with fresh Mint & Ginger in the morning sets my day right & a warm cup of Nespresso in the afternoon for that pick me up. 

FAVORITE LUNCH?  A Bibimbap from Bibibop Asian Grill in Schaumburg. A meal in a bowl concept serving a flavorful mix of rice, protein, and fresh veggies. The nutrition is all portioned out on top of the bowl so at the end of the day you know you are having a balanced meal. 

MUST HAVE WORK GADGET?  Apple 12 Pro Max – Apart from emails and instantaneous work updates through various chat systems, it is now my bank, wallet, GPS system, digital camera, flashlight, voice recorder, home automation controller. With the plethora of software and services available on my smartphone, it is by far the most important digital screen in my life.

I am not sure Steve Jobs entirely understood the impact of the iPhone when he introduced it, but he did understand that it would be a platform for innovation and indeed that is what it has become.

BRING A LUNCH OR EAT OUT?  Actually both I would say but mostly eat out! 

FAVORITE SPACE? My office – it is styled to my liking. Bright, white with Gold accents. A place where I go to be creative. 

COMMUTE TIME? 20 minutes from the office to home

NEWS SOURCE?  Espresso & Pocket are my go-to apps

DESK ORGANIZED OR CLUTTERED? Organized. Makes for easy business! 


Mac or PC? PC 

BREAK TIME? I don’t have many breaks during the day, but when I do, I get a nice cup of coffee, and strategize the rest of my day.

 My dedicated break time is when I sit down in my home in the morning when it is nice and quiet – with my tea, and I strategize my day.

MOST EFFECTIVE HOURS OF THE WORKDAY? Noon-4 seems to be the most productive. I get done a lot with my teams between this window. By then they have all their reports and updates ready and its more productive mutually. 

FAVORITE BUSINESS BOOK? The Compound Effect – Darren Hardy. Taught me the strategy of reaping huge rewards from small seemingly insignificant actions daily. 

SOMEONE YOU LOOK UP TO IN YOUR INDUSTRY? All the 22 trailblazing women who have scaled their companies to successful IPOs.

HOW DO YOU CLOSE OUT YOUR WORKDAY? Hard stop around 6:30-7:00PM. Take a note of what’s need to be done the next day. Have dinner with family. Exchange how our day was. Some Me time later, where I catch up with my family and friends in India. Skin care and 30 minutes of reading. I’m still working on no gadgets before bedtime. 

BUSINESS ADVICE? (1) Most successful founders are not anything special. The difference is they tried, and you did not. (2) Passion, Purpose and Profit can co-exist.  – Whitney Wolfe

When in the Home

FASHION STYLE? Loungewear and Athleisure beats hands down. Cozy and comfort over anything.  

WINE OR COCKTAIL? Why not both? White Wine – Moscato.

FAVORITE MEAL YOU COOK? Make a mean lasagna! My family loves it.

MUST HAVE KITCHEN GADGET?  Classic Dutch Oven. I love how the goat or chicken curry turns out to be. 

COOK OUT OR TAKE OUT? Cook out all the way

FAVORITE ROOM IN THE HOUSE? The family dining room. All decisions are made there, from what’s for breakfast to where to invest. 

HOURS SPENT DRIVING AROUND? I don’t do that on a daily basis.    

MUSIC OR PODCAST? (1) Jenny and Liz Kaplan’s Encyclopedia Womannica to fill in the gaps where women are historically underrepresented. Each episode is a five-minute lesson on a brilliant woman you may not know, but most likely should. (2) Oprah’s Super Soul Conversations. (3) Big Fan of Michelle Obama’s



TV OR NETFLIX? Neither – don’t watch a whole lot of TV. I watch movies occasionally.  

HOW LONG CAN YOU GO BEFORE YOU NEED A BREAK? It usually takes around three months before I need a vacation. Even if I don’t travel far, it’s important to change your scenery. 


FAVORITE RECREATIONAL READ? Becoming by Michelle Obama  


HOW DO YOU UNWIND YOUR DAY? Family time is a big part of it. Getting to know how everyone’s day was, planning out meals for the next day & planning out my son’s day and make sure everything is ready to go. I also read, meditate, and isolate. This helps unplug from the world and helps me shut down at night.  

HOME FRONT ADVICE? Running a house requires a lot of planning and prepping ahead of time. Its both a gift and a curse. Lower your expectations, embrace interruptions and give yourself grace. 

Recipe Favorite 

Chicken Tikka Nachos

When I immigrated to America, I was hooked on Zesty Nachos. I frantically started looking for fusion recipes that would satisfy my South Asian palate. This recipe is taken from “That Spicy Chick’s” Blog. 

Chicken Tikka Nachos – an Indian spin on everyone’s favorite classic Mexican appetizer! They are made with delicious, shredded Chicken Tikka, plenty of cheese, pico de gallo, creamy cooling yogurt sauce, and a spicy red chili sauce! 

author: LAVINA prep time: 1 HOUR cook time: 30 MINUTES total time: 1 HOUR 30 MINUTES yield: 6–8

For the Chicken Tikka:

  • 2 Chicken Breasts (about 400g), boneless, skinless
  • 1 TBLS freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
  • 1 TSP Kosher Salt
  • ¾ TSP ground Cayenne
  • 1 TSP Garam Masala (store-bought is fine, but homemade Garam Masala always tastes much better!)
  • 1 TSP ground Cumin
  • 1 TSP Coriander powder
  • 1 TSP Turmeric powder
  • ½ TSP Tandoori color powder (or 1–2 drops red/orange food color)
  • 2 TSP Ginger Paste
  • 2 TSP Garlic Paste
  • 4 TBLS Greek Yogurt
  • 1 TBLS Unsalted Butter
  • 1 TBLS Olive Oil

For the Creamy Cooling Yogurt Sauce:

  • 1 cup Greek Yogurt
  • 1 TBLS minced Cucumber
  • 1 TBLS finely chopped Mint Leaves
  • ¼ TSP ground Cayenne
  • ¼ TSP ground Cumin
  • ¼ TSP Smoked Paprika
  • 1 TSP freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
  • ¼ TSP Kosher Salt, to taste
  • 1/8 – ¼ TSP freshly cracked Black Pepper, to taste

For the Pico de Gallo:

  • 1 medium Tomato – seeds removed, chopped small.
  • ½ medium Red Onion – small chopped
  • 1 TBLS freshly squeezed Lemon Juice
  • 1 TBLS Coriander – roughly chopped.
  • 1 TBLS Mint Leaves – roughly chopped.

For Assembling the Chicken Tikka Nachos:

  • 1 bag (200-230g) of Tortilla Chips (I use lightly salted)
  • 2–3 cups shredded Chicken Tikka
  • 2 cups shredded Sharp Cheddar Cheese (either shredded from a block or try a bag of Tilamook’s FarmStyle Cut Sharp Cheddar Cheese – I like it because it melts evenly and quickly!)
  • 6 slices Colby Jack Cheese – broken up into pieces (I use Sara Lee’s custom slices and used 12 x half slices in total)
  • 1 TBLS Coriander – roughly chopped.

Optional Toppings: Pico de Gallo, Creamy Cooling Yogurt Sauce (recipes included below), 3-4 TBLS Mykonos Red Chili Sauce (or any of your favorite hot sauces!), sour cream, guacamole, salsa, olives, etc.


For the Chicken Tikka:

Combine all the ingredients except the unsalted butter and olive oil in a large bowl. Mix and make sure the chicken breasts are fully submerged in the marinade. Cover with cling wrap and allow for the chicken to marinate for 1 hour, or overnight in the refrigerator for best results.

When ready to cook, heat the unsalted butter and Olive Oil in a medium sized sauté/fry pan over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the marinated Chicken Tikka breasts and the remaining marinade in the bowl to the pan. Cook for 6-8 minutes on each side, or until the chicken has cooked through and longer pink on the inside. Transfer the Chicken Tikka breasts and shred with two forks. Set aside.

For the Creamy Cooling Yogurt Sauce:

Combine all the ingredients in a medium sized bowl (or measuring cup) and mix to combine. Transfer to an easy squeeze condiment bottle and store in the refrigerator until needed.

For the Pico de Gallo:

Combine all the ingredients in a medium sized bowl and toss until combined.

For Assembling the Chicken Tikka Nachos:

Preheat oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6.

Spread half of the tortilla chips evenly in a large cast iron skillet, round cake pan, 9×13 baking dish, or directly on a baking tray/sheet pan. Top evenly with half of the shredded Chicken Tikka, half of the shredded cheddar cheese, and half of the Colby Jack cheese pieces. Repeat with the remainder tortilla chips, Chicken Tikka, shredded cheddar cheese, and Colby Jack cheese pieces.

Bake until the cheese has melted – about 10-12 minutes.

Remove from the oven and drizzle with the Creamy Cooling Cucumber Sauce and Mykonos Red Chili Sauce (if using) or your favorite hot sauce! Spoon the Pico de Gallo evenly on top and garnish with the chopped coriander. Serve immediately!


Make Ahead: You can make the Creamy Cooling Yogurt Sauce and Pico de Gallo a day in advance. For the Chicken Tikka, I recommend marinating it 2 days in advance, and then cooking/shredding it a day in advance of serving. This way, all there is left to do on the day of serving is assemble the Chicken Tikka Nachos and bake it!

Storing: You will most likely have leftover Creamy Cooling Yogurt Sauce and Pico de Gallo. Store in the refrigerator and consume within 1-2 days. If you have leftover shredded Chicken Tikka, store in the refrigerator in an airtight contain

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