I don’t know what attracted me to Dassana’s blog Veg Recipes of India – her drool worthy food photographs, her innocent smile, her down to earth writing or her easy to follow recipes. Everything about her is awesome and I just had to introduce her to all of you. Do check out her blog. You’d be left very hungry, I warn ya! 😉
I started to blog in 2009. It was my husband who was constantly suggesting me to put my energies in the creative direction as he liked what I cooked. I too enjoy cooking. I have been cooking since I was ten. So he suggested that I start a food blog to give a creative impetus to my energies.
Yes, I faced some difficulties which are there in every profession. But since I enjoyed my work and also this passion for blogging & cooking did not let the difficulties affect me. The fact that I am a web developer also helped me a lot in terms of coding and designing the blog.
Ultimately regarding the difficulties the deciding factor is whether you enjoy your work or not. If you enjoy your work, then every difficulty is a stepping stone to some new learning or self discovery. I learnt so many new things in my three years of blogging.
2. What do you cover on your blog? Any specific interest areas?
My blog is all about vegetarian & vegan food, mostly Indian. I am not a born and brought up vegetarian. I became a vegetarian by choice. I have a heart which is still pulsating with love and compassion not only for human beings but also for animals.
Frankly speaking, it’s a myth that non vegetarian food is more tastier than vegetarian food. It is not only the taste, but health, aesthetic and spiritual values that make vegetarian food far far better than non vegetarian food.
3. Where do you find inspiration to come up with new recipes every time?
Nature inspires me. Inspiration is also pulsating within me as I am a creative person. Whenever you give a creative & positive expression to your energies, the outcome awes and inspires you.
For me I just love cooking and photography. It is a more a matter of love than inspiration. If you don’t love your work than you need to look for inspiration outside.
4. How much time and money do you spend in running your blog?
On an average I spend 5 hours everyday on my blog which includes everything from cooking to styling the food, taking pics, post processing the pics, posting, social networking and submitting photos in food p*rn sites…
I spend 25 $ per month on website hosting. Also there are expenditures like props, cooking books, photography books, crockery, table wares and the list goes on and on and never ends for a food blogger . 🙂
5. What are the essential qualities one must possess to be a successful food blogger such as yourself?
One has to be very focussed and dedicated in life, be it in any work you do. I was and am very focussed and passionate about blogging & food photography.
I found my niche in blogging and it is something I enjoy thoroughly. I just blog for the sake of blogging, not because I want money or I want popularity or anything.
For me the entire process from cooking too taking photos to editing the photos and posting…. everything is a satisfying and a creative work. Always respect your own uniqueness and follow it.
To sum up success is irrelevant. What is important is that you should love your work and choose your field which you love. In the long run, if you become materialistically successful in a field which you don’t love, then in reality you are an unsuccessful person. A successful person is one who is content and loves what he/she is doing.
6. Which chefs do you look upto the most?
There are only two chefs who are not professional chefs but they make the best food and come what may… sometimes work under pressure and create the best culinary delights…. all over the world you will find such chefs and in your own home too…
my mom and my mom-in-law…. two untrained chefs but can beat any masterchef…. who are experienced cooks….. persevering, patient, hardworking, creative and nurture their families with their love as well with good nutritious food.
7. You also do a lot of great photography on your blog. Did you took up any course to learn it?
Whatever I know about food photography is all self-learned. I practiced and practiced everything from learning the camera modes, to the nuances of light, to the post processing of photographs. I am still learning and practicing.
I started initially with a mobile phone for taking pics. Then got myself a point and shoot camera. Later graduated to a DSLR and started to take photos initially in the Auto Mode. Now I take all my photos in the Manual Mode.
I have not taken any course. I have gone through some photography books to learn the techniques.
But after learning the techniques you need to have the eye to come up with beautiful shots. For that you need to be spontaneous and creative and be in the moment. No one can teach that. Each moment is new. So is each shot new. So you have to be spontaneously flowing with life to capture each shot.
My practice of meditation makes me anew each moment and that helps me in photography.
Try to have food of every color once in a week. Don’t eat what you tongue likes. Eat what your body craves for. Listen to your body’s needs then to your mind’s desire.
Eat slowly but don’t overeat.
Don’t drink water immediately after eating food.
Eat food in a relaxed way. Don’t eat when you are tensed and hurried. Give respect to food. If you are respectful towards food, you are giving respect to your life as well the to the Creator.
Don’t waste any food. Give it to birds, animals or poor people.