Thursday, July 25, 2013

Beautiful Memory Food....

I've never met her in person,  but it feels like I have.

My blogging friend Shruti Nargundkar, who is an education innovator, entrepreneur,teacher, instructional designer, curriculum and courseware developer in Melbourne.

This urge to "impart"  boils over and spills into her other life as  food blogger, where every dish has a story, a life, a personality, and she  is like a style coach for the Miss Food-Universe, planning and polishing every dish display, as she studs it with little diamond memories.

She clicks and  describes them all, in their delicious finery, salivating in colors, and educates the world.   

(All photos courtesy Shruti's blog)

Be it the simple Kande Pohe, glistening amidst coriander-coconut garnish winking at her at the squeezing of a lemon, reminding her of overnight bus rides and roadside breakfasts with her husband , in southern India.

Or  some strange purple beans that enrich a tomato-y vegetable stew, with an implicit crunch on a winter's day in Melbourne , which gets her daughters to rush home for a flavorful meal.

It could be the dignified conservative Idli, all puffed up in self importance ,secretly looking for the item number chutney, that gets her talking about chutney places Down Under.  

Or it could be the stuffy potato,  sacrificed at the alter of diversity-in-school-lunch-boxes-of-childhood, that now makes a grand comeback, baked, puffing and sitting for a meal adorned with veggie jewels, golden cheese, and butters melting and saying 'I told you so !"..


Maybe a rural brinjal, in its posh avatar as an aubergine, long and slender, that takes her back to her Middle East sojourn. She cuts them in long halves, scoops out some memories, smiles at those  garlic, onion, tomato , chillies, mint, oregano folks gatecrashing, grills them and reminds them to meet the couscous types .... 

What do you say about a golden pumpkin raita, redolent with coconut, coriander, crackling with chillies, mustard and hing,  trying to act real posh while being presented as a dip - like traditional mangalsutras coming back into fashion again !

And the simple "thalipeeth" (roasted multigrain stiff pancake) of her childhood, snacked after school , straight off the griddle, as her mother poked holes in them which she thought was all about "my  thalipeeeth strongest !"; and how she made it now Down Under, with a mix of grains, so appropriate for a country with so many nationalities.  

Her work is a beautiful celebration of family, food and an amazing ability to make pictures speak, in support of some wonderful memories she writes about.    

Be it cakes pining to be united with fresh fruit,  little baby potatoes troubling shiny tired stuffy brinjals, awash in spicy masala, or traditional sweets enjoyed  on festival days of childhood, every picture has a story, that adorns, beautifies, and makes you want to pick it off the screen and have it yourself

Come to think of it, sometimes, I can even smell the stuff.   And I drool.

Hmmm. OK. Time to get back o the exercises. ....

Submitted as an entry for the "Tanishq ‘As Beautiful As Your Work’ contest " . Blog about women who make their work beautiful


  1. Simply loved this blog post ! All the very Best for the contest !

  2. I love Shruti's blog too just as her memories linked to the delicious looking and tasting dishes she writes about. And it is all thanks to you that I came to 'know' her!

    1. Zephyr, It is such an accomplishment to be a wonderful cook, writer, and food photographer. With so much beauty in everything. I now learn that she is also into translation of wonderful marathi publications/books .... all this in addition to her chosen career.

  3. Shruti's blog is fantastic, Suranga. Good luck to you with the Mia Competition too!

    1. Corinne, Thank you! I started getting inspired by her writeups and photos to make poems, and we do have a lot of fun.

  4. She has a beautiful blog. And yum!!!!

    I am in Brisbane at the moment because of family issues which I hope to positively talk about at some point soon. Send some positive vibes please. I hope you and your family are well. Isn't the Ashes horrific? Well for us anyway. What has happened to Australia? Plus I do so hope you get to visit Melbourne one day soon. X

    1. Lilly, Thank you! Sending you lots of positive energy, and I hope whatever it is gets resolved soon.... I so hope you and my Melbourne friend get to meet some day . Am not paying attention to any cricket these days. There is just too much of it and it is hyped.

      Ashes to Ashes
      Dust to dust
      Australia will win again
      As it surely must....


  5. I think Shruti's blog makes 'delicious' reading and your description of it is perfect ! Both of you have such a wonderful way with words !

  6. Salivated all over again as I read your play on words about Shruti's blog! Love her blog and her eloquent style of writing and your vert picturesque 'ramblings'as well!

    1. Nandita Amin, Thank you, and yes, her blog is so inspiring. Welcome to my blog!

  7. Looks so good
    an love your new header
    With health issues
    did not visit as much as in the past.

  8. Cooking really is a labour of love isn't it? Very drool worthy pics. I'm ready to dig into these although I just had lunch :)

  9. How to make ice cream - Yuuummmm....ya, here is the recipe foe delicious dessert. This is really very simple, even kid can try this..!!   Ingredients • Vanilla or any other Flavoured essence 1.5 tea spoon • Cornflou...

  10. Hi i am food lover and loved this blog post ! the delicious food and the tasting dishes photos so now i am started reading for shruti's blog both the blog are awesome and tasty.You are the true friend.

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  11. Lovely write up! And the same story here too.....never met Shruti though I hope to some day but she inspired me to start mine....many thanks to a woman whose warmth spills over into her blog!