So here I am. I’ve started a blog. I remember getting taught about these in an Information Systems class at university in 2005 but I didn’t really get the point of them. Writing random things on the internet to share with strangers? Never could I imagine that in a few years time we’d be sharing everything with everyone, online, in all sorts of ways. This was back when Bebo was still the social networking platform.
Fast forward ten years, beyond only caring about cheap drinks in the student union, and here I am in my early 30s looking to ‘get creative’ and do something ‘for me’. I could have gone for knitting, or swing dancing, or ultra-marathons, but I’m just too lazy. I decided to start with what I know best. Food.
Growing up with a chef as a father undoubtedly influenced my relationship with, and passion for food. The smells of different curries and concoctions cooking for hours in the kitchen; hosting family meals and our birthday parties with tables of food and hours of prep; and learning to cook, dressed in my dad’s oversized whites as ‘Junior Chef’ (my dad never called me Sareta, always Junior – I think even he forgot how to pronounce the odd name he’d given me).
However, I won’t romanticise it completely. I’ll never forget our ‘emergency food’ for when dad was working all day and all night and Naomi (big sis) and I had to fend for ourselves. Kraft cheesy pasta or Findus crispy pancakes for the finest of schemie teas – more on those at a later date. Or the long nights spent helping dad out in his restaurants or takeaways as a teenager when he couldn’t afford more staff.
And even in the more trying times, the age old Indian placement of food at the heart of homely values and being a cure for all always rang true. To me, cooking is often cathartic. If I’m stressed or sad I cook it all away. My stress levels actually heightened if I’ve been out of the kitchen for too long!
One day I may follow my father’s enterprising footsteps. But an awareness of the backbreaking work and financial uncertainty means that for the time-being I am content in cooking up a feast in my own kitchen, and taking inspiration from culinary delights across the country and around the world. So this blog is a place for me to share such experiences and ideas through the power of the internet. How very 2015.