My parents hail from Lucknow, known for the confluence of Awadhi and Mughlai cuisines; the variety of food the city offers can satiate even the wildest gastronomic fantasies. Though I was brought up in Jaipur, I spent most of my summer vacations back in Lucknow enjoying the mouth watering chats, lip smacking kebabs, delectable curries and aromatic biryani; some of it in the crowded markets and a lot other, straight out of the kitchen at home…steaming hot!!
Though it is difficult for me to trace my journey into the world of cooking…for sure, it has been exciting. From uncooked, to burnt, to overcooked; I have done it all!!
I guess the scrumptious Lucknowi meals were my first inspiration to learn cooking, for whenever I witnessed the magic of converting the ordinary and not-so-appealing ingredients into mouth watering delicacies; I wanted to recreate it myself.
Since I grew up in the Pink City, I am also, equally fond of the Rajasthani cuisine – which is diametrically opposite to that of its Lucknowi cousin. Scarcity of water and fresh vegetables has had a heavy influence on the cooking style in Rajasthan. Besan or Gram flour preparations therefore dominate this cuisine. Spicy Gatte, Dal-baati, Kadi, Ker-Saangri, Guwar-ki-phali and Laal maas are amongst the most popular. Rajasthani sweets such as Ghewar, Churma, Besan Chakki and Makkhan Bada are unparalleled in taste. These are a special favorite with my colleagues.
The cooking skills that I have acquired are a confluence of predominantly these two states and to some extent my exposure to other Indian and International cuisines. In my blog, I intend to cover recipes mostly from UP, Rajasthan and other states in India along with some continental recipes. I will try and maintain the authenticity to a large extent and wherever possible, share different preparations of the same dish.