January is already over- and what a month it’s been! Since returning from Vietnam, I haven’t really gotten back into the swing of blogging as my head’s swirling with ideas that I’ve not figured out how to formulate into words. It’s been a great start for the blog too: some of the most read posts were the most recent such as the Vietnam reflection and the shorshe salmon post. For the new readers: welcome! I’m glad that Golden Tiffin has somehow resonated with your aesthetics. Whether you’re here for the recipes or just want to know more about me, this is a little heads up: you can find me here, here and here. I’ve also got big plans for the YouTube channel this year. It’s laid a little redundant as the videos were heading in a direction I didn’t plan. I definitely want to ramp up the food video content as the masala chai one did so well. If you have any suggestions for anything you want to see on the blog, you can pop it in an email!
Behind The Scenes
If you follow me on Instagram, then you’d know that I’ve been working on a mammoth sized project: a Bengali cookbook. It’s something that I’ve felt quite passionately about for some time now. With the number of first generation British Bangladeshis dwindling, a lot of the recipes I’ve grown to know and love have come under threat. As an oral tradition, we Bengalis tend to talk more than we write, but what’ll happen once those dadis and dadas are no more to tell us about the food from yesteryears? I for one, am too stubborn to let my gran go to the grave with her kitchen secrets. So far, the cookbook is not what I would say is the ultimate Bengali cookbook. That’s too much. But I’ve finally settled on a collection that I think is more important in this generation of short-on-time but long-on-love millennials (myself included). The first draft is nowhere near complete. Some recipes are still just fumes in the air while others have already been tested and shot. As the writer, photographer, recipe tester, stylist and all the things in between, I do find myself wondering what on earth it is I’m doing. All I know is that it will be worth it.
A while ago on Instagram stories, I posted a picture of these gorgeous blue and white pheasant crockery. After hunting high and low, I’ve found a great British brand that stock them: Burleigh. I’ve bought a few tureens and can’t wait to grow the collection. Boring, I know. And yet, looking at these wonderfully glazed delights brings me more joy than you can imagine!
Recipe On Repeat
I’m trying to be better at taking in packed lunches so I’m not wasting my lunch break or precious calories on awful meal deals. Throughout the working week, I tend to just make a rotation of vegetable heavy couscous or pasta as it can be eaten hot or cold (vital when the other half has no microwave in the office- must I suffer too?) One way I’ve been making it interesting is by using the aubergine recipe I learned while I was in Hoi An, Vietnam. It’s quick, easy and doesn’t need a lot of thought. Perfect when you’re meal prepping for the days ahead.
I know it seems like I just got back from Vietnam, but I already have my eyes set on another country- Morocco! It’s becoming increasingly apparent that I don’t escape because of the stresses of life, but because of this perpetual frosty British weather. I’ve already planned out a fantasy itinerary, spreadsheet and all! Perhaps if I reach the goal of writing out the first draft of the cookbook in the next few weeks, I’ll think of myself as deserving…
Remnants Of A Separation by Anchal Malhotra is a book my husband bought me as motivation to complete my own. The idea of immortalising memories through recording material objects is a fascinating concept and I love the reportage style photos that are scattered through the pages too. Although this was originally an exhibition, the book is available to buy on Amazon. Reading through some of the memories make me wonder what unspoken experiences my own grandparents must have gone through to be here. The fact that these are all memoirs make it an emotional read. Not a light one, but necessary as a reminder of the struggles and sacrifices during partition.