Noorbanu Nimji is an East African Ismaili Muslim with ancestral roots in Northern India. Her family moved to Canada in 1974. Soon after her arrival in Calgary, Noorbanu was asked to teach cooking to youth in the local Ismaili community. She taught for a decade before beginning to publish her recipes. She self-published three cookbooks prior to beginning the manuscript for A Spicy Touch, with sales of over 250,000 copies.