“The humble person may not end up on the top of the “ladder”, but he is more likely to have a truly successful life because he is more likely to succeed in the things that matter most.” reads a quote on Sailu’s Kitchen.
This stands very true for Shailaja who runs a very successful and wonderful food blog called www.sailusfood.com. I just love going through her recipes and experimenting with them. Shailaja has a passion for cooking and it shows in each of the recipe that she publishes. Cooking is her forte and she excels in vegetarian, eggetarian, non-vegetarian, and all other “-tarian” fare. She specializes in all forms of cooking, be it authentic Andhra food or the elaborate Punjabi spread. Also, she has started a special platform for kids where in she uploads interesting and healthy recipes for children, don’t miss out her Palak Laccha Paratha.
The most unique and praiseworthy feature about Sailu’s Kitchen is that this food blog contains recipes that you can make on a day-to-day basis, such as for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. You wouldn’t have to wait for a Sunday to try out these recipes; extremely healthy recipes made from fresh produce is what a majority of Sailus Kitchen recipes are.
Its with immense pleasure that we introduce Shailaja aka sailu to you all Excerpts from our interview with her:
When and how did you start blogging ? Any difficulties that you faced?
I am passionate about Indian food, traditional recipes handed down by the elders of the family and have been documenting family recipes since my college years. When I gave up my government job to be a full-time mother to my son, Nehal, I spent time in the kitchen like never before. I enjoy my visit to the farmer’s market to buy fresh vegetables, cooking with seasonal fresh ingredients and discovering new flavors, especially regional Indian cuisines (thanks to the internet and cookbooks). I chanced upon blogs during early 2005 and took the plunge during the winter of 2005. I thought it would be a good opportunity to share with the world, traditional family recipes which one could never find on the internet (at that point of time).
I did not face any difficulties as such. It is a hobby and I used to blog hop visiting other food blogs and comment and interact with food bloggers (during the early blogging years when I had time on hand). I enjoyed networking and sharing of resources and recipes. I am passionate about food blogging and am inspired by the comments and positive feedback of my readers. They keep me motivated.
2. What do you cover on your blog? Any specific interest areas?
I usually blog what I cook for my family. Most home-cooked Indian meals with a focus on Andhra cuisine. Simple every day “subzis” that go with roti and rice. I use fresh vegetables (from my local farmer’s market), a lot of greens, lentils and whole grains including millet, oats and barley in my everyday cooking. I do cover a lot of vegetarian, non-vegetarian Indian food and kid-friendly recipes at my other food blog for kids. You will find tiffins, bakes, cakes, cookies and chaat recipes on my blog.
Chicken Masala Balls
3. Where do you find inspiration to come up with new recipes every time?
Its a natural process and I go with what I have in my pantry/refrigerator. I am inspired by many food bloggers and food magazines and adapt many of their recipes to suit our palate.
4. How much time and money do you spend in running your blog?
On an average, I spend 3-4 hours of the day I publish a post. Otherwise, I spend anywhere between 1-2 hours each day, answering queries on the blog and on social networking sites like facebook and twitter. Due to heavy traffic, the hosting fee is pretty high for my blog. For software and hosting, I spend approximately Rs.10,000/- to Rs.12,000/- each month.
5. What are the essential qualities one must possess to be a successful food blogger such as yourself?
Passion for the topic one is blogging about, be well organized with good time management skills, be social and genuinely enjoy helping others.
6. Which chefs do you look upto the most?
I like Yotam Ottolenghi and Nigella Lawson.
7. Quick food tips you could give to our readers.
For soft rotis, knead the dough for a longer period and use milk or curd/yogurt along with little water. If you have added more salt than required to a curry, add a peeled potato to the curry. It will absorb the excess salt.
Being a beauty blog, I must share some tips on using food ingredients to enhance one’s beauty:
1. After breaking an egg for an omelette, apply the left over egg white that sticks to the shell to your face. Leave it
for 15 minutes, it tightens the skin.
2. Do not throw away lemon peel after use. Add a bit of sugar to the peel and rub your palms and hands for 2-3 minutes for instant glow.
3. Apply buttermilk to the face to remove tan. Leave it on for 15 minutes and wash.
4. Use 2-3 tablespoons of vinegar in a liter of water as a last rinse for your hair (after hair wash). This gives shine to the hair and controls hair loss.
You can check out some popular recipes at Sailus’s Kitchen:
- Butter Paneer Masala.
- Chicken Masala Balls.
- Hyderabadi Chicken Biryani.
- Eggplants/Brinjals in Poppy Seeds Sauce.