Find the best raw ingredients that you can and cook them as simply as you can.
I can still hear my grandmother saying this. As the matriarch of a big joint family (My grandma had 8 kids!) simple, wholesome food was something she always insisted on and instilled in all her children and grandchildren.
The beginning of a love-affair with food…
Growing up in a joint family meant that I was never really forced into the kitchen, there were too many hands already but the aromas always lured me in. I would sit on the floor and enjoy the hot roti coming off the tava. I would take a spoon to the steaming pot only to be hit on the back of my hand and then handed the dal in a bowl to eat on my own! Ah! The memories of that warm childhood kitchen 🙂
How I came to cooking at 25!
And then I left home to the world of canteen and hostel food and restaurants for almost 10 years. Until I figured that I am not going back home and it’s time to learn to cook. I cooked my first complete meal when I was 25 and I was amazed that I could. Cooking, slowly became a pleasurable task and something I wanted to learn more and do more. It made me happy and it made my flatmates happier.
I was like this eager student who always had to get A+. So I would call my mom for recipes, read magazines and books and just keep trying. As bachelorettes, we had a very basic kitchen set up and yet we managed simple weekday dinners and elaborate weekend parties at our home.
Cooking, as I discovered, was (and is) magic. To take simple ingredients and transform them into something that is delicious and nourishing. What a joy! Every dish is more than the sum of its ingredients. It has your touch, your thoughts, you intentions going right into it.
Every time I open the pot, or remove the tray from oven to taste, to smell, I’m amazed by the beauty of food. Cooking just feels right. It is satisfying. That was the reason how this blog started. To simply share the joy of good food. To invite everyone to cook.
Becoming mindful of the ingredients and cooking…
In 2016, following a health scare, I was nudged to relook at everything we ate by a naturopath. I believed I was doing everything right. We ate simple home-cooked food for most of our meals but I didn’t realize how processed and refined food was sneaking into my pantry and in our bodies.
We rediscovered our whole relationship with food and cooking. Just by natural remedies and changes in food habits we were able to get rid of all common ailments for good. It was almost like finding a new person inside our bodies. We became stronger, leaner, healthier, and just felt so much better. It was euphoric to know that we had all this healing power within us and we now knew how to tap it. Food fuels our body for good and for worse. It all depends on what we choose to eat.
In the journey of exploring food, I did not just learn about mindful, healthy and simple food preparation; I also learned about how, what I put on my plate affects me, my loved ones, and the world at large. Vegan recipes is just a small part of it, we are also careful about where our food is grown and if possible who has grown our food. As a family, we are taking baby steps towards a mindful and sustainable household rooted in our love for nature, for real food, and for each other.
The journey continues…
I hope this blog inspires you, it is a means for me to share the stories and perspectives from my journey and learn from everyone else’s. I would love to hear from you. You can read more about My Weekend Kitchen here.
I have a very different question. Did you ever had a bhaturae recipe with ingredients weighed in gms? This is because I used to follow that and suddenly it disappeared. And today I landed at your blog wondering if you are the one I was looking for to share my experience ?
Firstly, sorry for the late response. I was traveling for the last 2 months with limited internet connectivity.
For the bhature recipe, no I did not have a recipe with ingredients in grams. I always use a cup measure for measuring out flour in my bhature recipe. I use three kinds of flour in a 3:1:1 proportion and using a cup makes it easier for me.
I hope you find the recipe you are looking for but if you want to try a healthier recipe with less of maida, do have a look at my recipe too! 🙂
Eileen Shi @thefitmed
I first found your recipe for mung bean dal, made it and it turned out to be utterly delicious. Then I browsed through your blog and read about your Food Journey. Thank you for sharing and your story made me smile. I enjoy getting to know what cooking simple and healthy ingredients means to you. I am a physician and I firmly believe food is a source of nourishment and healing. I strive to teach my patients this principle. I will be recommending your website and recipes to them!
Thanks, Eileen! Your words mean a lot to me 🙂 they encourage me to continue exploring, learning, and sharing. Thank you for recommending!
I was googling what the English word for Saunf was and thanks to you I found it! Thanks for sharing the English words to match the Hindi, such a beautiful blog to have found, looking forward to trying your recipes!!
All the love,
Thanks, Makita for your encouraging words! I am glad you found the spice list helpful and I do hope you will try some of the recipes. I would love to know when you do!
Its a nice experience which you have shared through this blog. I just want to say, I too have a joint family and never made any dish, not even tea or 2 min noodles. After an year away from my family, I decided to cook for myself and my first dish was directly paneer sabji, and it was really not good at all. After watching videos of Indian chef’s I tried again and it was just awesome. So now till date I am continuing to cook and in these Covid times it helps me a lot. This is what I wanted to share. I would like to continue reading your blog.
I loved reading your story of how you started cooking and then to come to love it! Covid times have really shown us all the importance and beauty of home-cooking. Here is a post I wrote about Quarantine cooking with limited ingredients. Hope you like it.