Afsari was born in the town of Rajshahi in Bangladesh, where she grew up watching her mother cook. In Bangladesh, Afsari worked as a merchandiser in the garment industry. She later moved to Singapore with her husband and young son and started practicing her mother’s recipes by preparing them as after-school snacks for her son’s school. They moved to the U.S. in 2000 and settled in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, and both Afsari and her husband continue to work in the garment business in Manhattan. Afsari also caters parties and large events and teaches classes at ROC-NY, a non-profit culinary organization.