Monday, 20 October 2014

What's cooking? - Top 3 recipes

- You don't cook anymore? My friend, the one with the never-ending-confronting-questions, looks at me, expecting an answer. - What do you mean, I say, of course I cook. Why? Hm. Offended or not, of course I cook, right. What on earth?

- Well, you don't post any exciting recipes on your blog anymore, she replies. - You don't put any recipes, actually. Why? I miss them.

Aaaaww. She is right, I realize. Not a lot of recipes lately.

And then, with my friend's words on my mind, I go to check out my present blog recipes. And I had to giggle as I discovered some surprising facts about my recipe collection:

My all time most read blog post is a recipe post: Expat Epidorpio with a shocking 4 times as many readers as the second most read post. This recipe is most popular with readers in Russia, France and US.

My second most read recipe post is the one on Tzatziki and Raita. That is also the fifth most read post of all times. And I discovered that this was most popular with readers from USA, India and Germany.

My third most read recipe post is the one on Pita, Spring Rolls and Samosa. Yet another global recipe, where you can mix and adjust - and make your own version. This post had most readers from India, USA and Singapore.

So, my little research showed me that all the Top 3 recipes are global flexible recipes - meaning that you, with the same basic ingredients, can make a version - after your own choice - whether you prefer an Indian version, an Asian version, a European version or your very own special version...

Isn't that great? I like to discover new dishes, and I enjoy to experiment with ingredients, and I ust love to taste and eat all kinds of food - wherever I am. And I try to adjust - wherever I live.

But. Ok ok. I will not rest on my glorious recipe past forever. Oh no. I will experiment more and I will let myself be inspired. Thinking of which, I will head off to some of my favorite food bloggers now- that's often where I end up in my search for new culinary ideas. Hm, I think I might make another post on my top favorite food bloggers, my source of inspiration.

So, what do you do, dear reader? What's cooking in your kitchen right now? And where do you find inspiration for new culinary adventures? Any favorite food bloggers? Please share.

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Let there be light

- Remember Eli, over the dark clouds, the sky is always blue

That is what my grandfather used to say to me. In those moments when the worries seemed unbearable and there was absolutely no light in the horizon whatsoever. 

- There is always light in the end of that tunnel. No matter how long and dark it might seem to be. There is always light at the end of it. 

Was another one. He collected good quotes, my beloved late grandfather, and he never hesitated to shower us with them. Simple words of inspiration. Of encouragement. Of wisdom. Words that could lift you up on that grey day, in that dark moment and when u felt utterly totally in misery. My grandfather would be there and would not leave us alone until that feeling was there. The feeling that Everything Was Going To Be Alright. 

He passed away many years ago, my grandfather, but I still miss him. Missing his wise and comforting words. I feel grateful for the legacy he left behind though - maybe above all - the kindness and curiosity he met other people with. When he listened to you, he listened 100% , and he was there. With one of his quotes. One of his own or one of someone else's.  

- Always be the light in someone else's life, 
he would say, nodding and smiling like he let me in on the world's biggest mystery:
- Always be kind to people. Be generous with your smile. Share a kind word and a question. Show interest - and what do you know - you might be the light in that other person's life that day. 

And speaking of light, dear reader. Diwali, the festival of lights is just around the corner in India. The decorations are coming up, and everyone is getting ready: 

Diwali, the festival of lights. You know, I love the craziness of the Ganesha festival, the fun and women-power-spirit of Dusshera, but Diwali is to me like the Mother of all Indian festivals. The Queen. So vibrant, so powerful, so beautiful, so emotional... It's amazing. This is what I wrote last year: Happy Diwali

And after Diwali, we are heading towards Christmas. Another celebration where lighting candles and light bulbs play a big role. A candle for someone or something. A light for hope and gratitude.

So, dear reader, light a candle if you like. But maybe just as important: try to be the light in someone's life. All it takes is a smile, a kind word and some attention. It may mean more than you know.

Let there be light.


Thursday, 2 October 2014

1 day and 2 celebrations

First: thank you for all kind comments on my previous post about Geeta. It warmed my heart, and I feel so grateful for all the virtual hugs you sent me. And as I knew it would, the sadness and misery I felt, vanished in a flash of a moment, because who can stay sad when you are surrounded by a group of ladies in colorful clothes who are pushing wooden sticks into your hands and nodding enthusiastically: - dance, dance.... ? Not me...

Oh yes, dear reader, another festival is upon us, and has been here for almost 9 days now. The celebration of the divine mother Shakti in all her 9 forms. The 3 first days is for goddess Durga/Kali, remover of evil, suffering and imperfection, and then goddess of healing, wealth and prosperity, Lakshmi is worshiped, while the last 3 days is for Saraswati, goddess of creativity, wisdom and knowledge. Its a wonderful festival, that I have been so lucky to experience for the third year now. I love the decorations, light pulps in the streets, the flower garlands, the food, sweets, the colorful clothes and the bling bling - feeling about this festival. And the intense-ness of the dandiya dance... Magic days in Mumbai - what can I say...

So, 9 days, 9 nights... and 9 colors: one for each day. So on the blue day, for example, the ladies will dress like this:

Last year I also wrote about this lovely festival - and you can have a look at it here: Navrati festival 


Today, 2 October, we also celebrate the birthday of Mahatma Gandhi in India.

His home Mani Bhavan is one of my top favorite places to visit here in Mumbai, and the guests we have had from abroad, have all enjoyed their visit there immensely. Like me, they have all heard about Gandhi and how he led India to independence, and then visiting his home brings history alive in a very emotional way at this house.

More than anything, I love the philosophy and the words of Gandhi. I am sure that they will live forever and they will keep being a unique source of inspiration to people all around the world, myself included. 

Here are some of my favorite quotes by Gandhi.



Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.

Be the change you want to see in the world.

An ounce of practice is worth a thousand words.

- So, dear reader, which one is your favorite quote? 

And as we continue with our celebrations here in Mumbai, I wish you all Happy Navrati and Happy birthday Mahatma Gandhi.

I hope you have a good day wherever you are. Enjoy your moments.

Ta ta from Mumbai!