Tete-a-Tete with Tasneem

Grab a cup of Chai (Tea) & join us as we chat with Tasneem,  popular food blogger & writer at Thoughts Over Chai

Tasneem 2What is the story behind your blog’s name ‘Thoughts Over Chai’?

The name occurred to me instantly – as I sat in front of the computer to start a blog. At that time I didn’t think it would shape up to be a food blog. It was simply a collection of my thoughts, sentiments and basically everything that runs at a constant speed in my mind.

And yes, I do have a vital connection with tea.  My mind works a million times better when I have a cup of tea in hand, and hence the name.

What is your favorite Middle Eastern dish?

Can’t get down to naming just one – the versatility in the Middle Eastern dishes is extraordinary. But if I had to name just one, it would be Baklava,hands down – I hope I learn to cook that one day.

Where do you draw your cooking inspirations from – the place you grew up or your mom or some recipe book?

My cooking inspiration comes from every corner of the world –  a quick chat with my mom and sister to know what they are cooking, my son’s demands,husband’s requests & a lot of social media influence.

Whatever meal I make each day,is a culmination of all these factors plus constant experiments. I love to play around in my kitchen.

What according to you is a foodie’s dream destination?

I’d say India – it’s such a beautiful country with lovely people, marvelous hospitality and a humongous variety of regional cuisines. The medley of flavors that you can find in different parts of the country is just amazing.Every corner has something distinct to offer and there is absolutely everything to love about that.

What are the five most essential ingredients that everyone should have in their kitchen at any given time?

  • Salt – No meal is complete without it.
  • Garlic – Why not? Love this ingredient for the kind of impression it leaves in every dish.
  • Coconut milk – Gives a regular meat curry an imperative jazz.
  • Cooking oil – Because I can’t imagine cooking my main meals without oil.
  • Eggs – Eggs in itself is a meal, so if you have just this in your pantry you won’t ever stay hungry. And it doesn’t even take a lot of time to cook!

What is your worst cooking nightmare? Any epic recipe failures?

I used to have many during the first few months of my marriage – couldn’t get the Biryani right, over cooked vegetables, unseasoned curries etc.

Once I spent the whole afternoon in the kitchen baking a cake –  for my husband’s birthday – his first after our after marriage & then popped it into the refrigerator until it was time to cut it (which was at midnight).

The cake hardened and the poor birthday boy was awfully embarrassed to run a knife through the cake in front of all his friends. I am glad we had another cake to our rescue and laughed over the debacle. The flashes from that day still haunt me every time I go in the kitchen to bake something new.

What is the most adventurous dish you’ve eaten?

Sadly, not yet!

What is it that you love most about food blogging?

I love the idea of sharing recipes and connecting with like minded people. I also cherish the fact that in a small way, I can touch someone’s life. Food is an integral part of our system – to inspire that, is humbling and that is what most food bloggers consider to be the most honorable part of their work.

You run a very successful blog – in terms of followers & traffic – any tips you’d like to share with us?

Thanks a ton! I am still just a drop in the vast ocean of blogging, but I believe in few things – being honest, writing about things I feel the most for & most importantly connecting with my readers.

Having my own voice, is my mantra 🙂

Any words of wisdom, to aspiring chefs, food bloggers?

Follow your heart and passion

Thank You Tasneem, for sharing your thoughts with us. We love how simple & down to earth you are & would like to wish you the very best for everything.

Do check out her amazing blog at Thoughts Over Chai

Let us know what you think about this interview at theblackbookdubai@gmail.com


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