Articles tagged with: vegan
food styling, kids lunchbox, Lunchbox bites, pulses and beans, stuffy delights/Indian flat breads, Veggies/curries »
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.”~Winston Churchill.
“Our company is into motion pictures and TVC (television commercials), are you interested in doing a project with us? If yes, we would like to meet you today, as the shoot schedule and the artists are already fixed” the caller on the other end continued and waited for my reply.
“Sure, I will come in the evening and let you know about my decision” I replied to ‘C’, producer of the Ad agency.
I got to know the enormity of the said project, a television commercial for Malaysia after meeting the director in evening and was slightly skeptical to take it.
I was a bit nervous when I entered the location early morning, what with hundreds of people running helter- skelter carrying giant light boxes, reflectors and the like.
I gave myself a few moments and quickly regained my composure after seeing a few familiar faces on-location. And after that there was no looking back.
There is no better time than now to be happy again to receive a mail from Natasha, feature writer of a popular Asian magazine ‘Better Photography’.
“I just had a look at your beautiful blog and I must commend you on your work. Your passion for food really shows! There is such love and care in the way you have arranged your food and props. Being a photographer myself, I really love the picture you have taken. There is a beautiful sense of composition and the colours are stunning ”
She sent me the above mail a few days back and asked whether she can share a few photographs of mine in their website with due credits to me.
A simple hobby which started with the percept of organizing recipes through a food blog has gradually metamorphosed into a memoir over the years. If some recipes help reconnect with my roots then the other recipes are woven around my personal experiences reflecting the cultural diversities I live in.
The omnipresent Idly from South India was a delicacy in mom’s place before my marriage. Many Sunday lunches were reserved for steamy hot puffy Idly (steamed rice-lentil cakes) dunked into spicy Sambhar (lentil curry).
The equation changed after my marriage to KK from South India in 1996. The humble Idly which is often taken for granted in Chennai is no longer considered a specialty food at my home.
Soaking a set proportion of rice-lentil, grinding the batter, fermenting it overnight and storing the fermented batter in refrigerator has become a way of life now.
While the lentils cooked, I started chopping the red Amaranth on my cutting board watching the two tiny squirrels play catch-me-if-you-can on the mango tree outside.
As I stood there silent, my mind began to wander and I started reminiscing about my childhood days…yet again.
“Who on Earth loves eating this laal chawli bhaji (red Amaranth) mom. It looks so yuck?” I would make faces in vain after seeing the slimy mass on my plate, hoping that she would stop making the same…someday.
A long angry look from mom and we would continue to shovel that slimy Chawli bhaji without uttering another word.
Baking bites, cookies, muffins »
We spent some quality time talking, reflecting and sharing some of our personal and professional matters with each other. We did more of window shopping than the actual prop shopping as she had restriction to carry the luggage in flight.
We never stopped talking and sharing food tips all along our way to market much to the chagrin of some shop keepers who were expecting us to do more of shopping than talking
“I add a handful of black sesame seeds to whatever I cook or bake at home, be it a Sambhar, Rasam, rice, or any Indian subji which takes care of the calcium intake of my family” A tip from her which is religiously followed by me hence-forth.
“Holi – the festival of colours, marks the beginning of spring season and is celebrated for two days. The first day eve begins with a bonfire or Holika dhahan which depicts the victory of good over evil. The next day is the time for playing with colours, greeting friends and sharing sweets with them.” Nostalgia started engulfing me as I narrated them my experiences.
And cooking traditional food during these celebrations could be a great way to stay connected to our roots. I wanted to make a sweet Empanada called Gujiyas/Ghughra/Karanji/Karachika in India for them to compensate for the fun and frolic that we miss here.
“A mother’s love, it knows no end. It begins with a dream, with a silent wish, and it never ever ends.” ~ Kelly.
As they say that “A mother is a mother from the moment her baby is first placed in her arms until eternity. It didn’t matter if her child were three, thirteen, or thirty.” After being a mother myself, I feel blessed that I can still just be a daughter that gets pampered and showered with love by her mom year after year.
It is strange how we hold on to our past through food, friends and family we leave behind. I was so happy to see someone visiting me from my homeland, Udaipur.
Thanks to some real-life social engagements, I went off-line for a couple of days and enjoyed the leisure time with family and friends. The self-exile did help in bringing some balance back into life .
Getting back to work again after a break can feel daunting. I was trying to re-sync my internet-based social media engagements and checking the in-boxes for any messages.
I checked the online link on the site of a popular Indian newspaper ‘The Tribune’ which published my interview a couple of days back. I was reading that article and grinning from ear to ear, as if I had just won the lottery
And why wouldn’t I, the article about food bloggers in India starts with a few snippets from ‘my journey into the world of food blogging‘ and ends with a sentence from my about page!
Following your dream is never easy, but these are the times when the efforts you put in, to realize your dreams feel worth.
Festive bites, fresh fruit desserts »
And then came the moment we all were waiting for. I almost held my breath and didn’t move a bit when my children took their first bite. They ate, looked at me and gave a mysterious smile which peaked my curiosity
I could not make out the taste when I scooped my first bite into Avocado Chocolate Mousse, but with the second bite I was instantly transformed into chocolaty haven. The rich, creamy and buttery taste of Avocado mousse seduced me into taking one bite and then another, till I was scraping the corners and reached the bottom of my ramekin.
The no-cook, easy and quick Avocado mousse taste exactly like how I expect my dessert to be. Food is the most delicious expression of emotions.
I received a phone call from a photographer friend the other day, “Hello, Sanjeeta, there is a photo shoot day after tomorrow and I said yes to the client, believing that you are there to help me out with the ‘food styling‘ part.”
“You have to cook 15 plus recipes in the studio and style the same. Things moved too fast, and I could not ask for more time from the client.” He concluded hurriedly.
And I was like “What?”. From sourcing props, shopping raw ingredients, planning the shots and cooking recipes in the studio to styling the sets …all in a day’s time…single-handedly…