About me and how I built this website

So would you like to know a little about me?

Whenever I visit an interesting website or blog, my eyes search for a particular page that gives me some information about the person who has written all that content. It is always a pleasure to know something about the director behind the scene. With the same intention in mind, I want to share with you, a little about me, my cooking experience, how and why I made this website. Just a word of caution, though. I have rambled on and on, so why don't you grab a cup of coffee or something, before you read on.

I am Manila (not from Philippines, though), a home maker, living in India with my family. Besides cooking my day goes in taking care of my four year old daughter and doing the everyday household chores.

I love to cook different recipes from around the world. Sometimes when I am tired and want to relax, I play some soothing music and just flip over my recipe books. I can't quite say when and how cooking became my passion. I guess it has been a long fruitful journey. I would like to share this journey with you (only if you are interested).

The beginning of my cooking journey

Was I interested in cooking when I was young?

Well, no, I was not into cooking at all when I was growing up, in fact I barely knew to make tea, rice, dal and a few other basic things, till I was seventeen. I was more into eating than cooking. As a lot of emphasis was placed on studies, so all I had to do was concentrate on that, eat well and play. I was pampered to an extent that I used to get morning tea in bed (good old days!).

It was time to improve my kitchen skills, I was told by my mother. Hence I started observing her in the kitchen and learning from her. I was also greatly influenced by my friends. I still remember, a friend of mine, who was exactly my age, used to cook full meals for her family. Once she came over and we went to the meat shop, purchased some mutton and with her help, I made a mutton curry. I was thrilled when it came out well. My mom also was very surprised and happy.

Slowly I started learning new recipes. My mother and my nana were my primary teachers. I also learnt a lot from my friends. India is a huge country with many states and each state has its own cuisine. So, there is plenty to learn. Gradually, I realized that I had a knack for cooking and enjoyed learning and experimenting with food.

Cooking and learning new recipes was fun

When I started working, I had no time to spare for cooking (there was no need as well). Although I loved to try an occasional off beat new recipe, anything fancy and not the regular stuff. I remember that at work (I was working with an airline), one of our senior colleagues, who was fond of cooking, would give us a recipe to prepare at home and bring over to work the next day. Then she would taste and decide whose came out the best. Good fun. That's when I baked for the first time some cookies, cakes and pasta.

But there was more in store for me as far as my cooking experience goes. I got married to a foodie (my husband just loves to eat good food and he is an excellent cook himself. My mother in law and sister in law are amazing cooks. Even my late father in law was a good cook). So you can imagine, how much work I had to do to bring myself upto their level. I learnt a lot from them. (Even today my biggest food critics are my husband and my daughter).

A whole new cooking experience

As the years went by, I found myself enjoying cooking and learning new recipes. I took pleasure and pride in inviting friends over and making different cuisines for them.

I think by that time I was very passionate about cooking but it was moving to the United Kingdom that really pushed me over the edge. It was there that I found and met real foodies. Living in the U.K helped me broaden my cooking horizons to supersede any geographical boundaries. There was a whole world of good food to explore. I got an opportunity to learn not only about English food but also continental food, authentic Chinese food, American delicacies, Mexican food and much more. It was there that my collection of recipe books grew from 5 to 25 (now I have so many that I have stopped counting).

Then we came back to India and my cooking frenzy took on another dimension - 'healthy cooking’. I tried to make my recipes as healthy as can be. Although, I did cook naughty things as well, occasionally still do.

A dream was born

A few years back I thought of putting all my recipes in a book and publishing it. I asked my friend "if I write a cook book, will it sell?" She gave me a very honest reply, "why will people buy your book, when there are so many cookbooks out there by professional chefs?". I realized that was true. Anyway, that chapter was closed and forgotten.

Then God bestowed His blessings...

...upon us and our beautiful daughter was born. Our world started revolving around her. So much so that I quit my job to take care of her. I became a proud homemaker (which was not easy). When she was a baby I did not get much time but as she started attending school and I was able to squeeze out a couple of hours a day for myself.

My secret desire - Could I be a work at home mother?

I realized that I wanted to get back to work or do something to break the monotony. Of course I knew there was no way of going back to a full time job, as that would mean putting my daughter in a day care or appointing a care taker at home. I was not comfortable leaving a small child in someone else’s care. So I started exploring the part time work options. Unfortunately in India there aren't many part time working options available. Therefore I started looking at the concept of working from home. I had heard about work at home mothers, on the internet. Hence, I put in all the free hours I had in surfing the net to find out what my options were.

Just a long dark tunnel

After searching the net for days, I found myself going round and round in circles with no conclusive information. So I gave up for a while. I restarted my quest for finding helpful information. I researched all options from reading emails and taking surveys to MLM and becoming affiliates etc. Everyone was promising millions of dollars and everything appeared so phony. I did not want easy money because there is no such thing as easy money. All I wanted was to be able to do something constructive which would bring me joy and pride, from home and in the process, make some money as well. But all I got from my so called research was a spinning head.

Light at the end of the tunnel

As they say, hard work never goes to waste. Mine too was not a complete waste. In fact when I took a few days away from the net and started analyzing the information I had gathered, I figured out that the best option would be to build my own website.

Life is not a bed of roses

So I thought about building a website and my long lost dream presented itself again. 'What if I made a website with my recipes'? I could put them together in one place and would not need to find a publisher to publish.

As interesting and tempting that the idea was, building a website was a Herculean task for a beginner, especially me, who did not even know at that time what a blog was (laugh all you want but it is true).

There were these major obstacles. i.e.

* I did not know how to build a website

* I was not willing to pay a hefty sum to a professional to build a site

* I had no technical knowledge at all. Starting from how do get a domain name (didn't even know what a domain name was - yes- you can laugh again if you want).

So, there was me back on the internet trying to find out how to build a website. Found out it was not easy . I would have had to start by learning HTML and much more. I was about to give up when I found out about Site Build It. Many people had spoken very well about them. They had mentioned that with them you don't need to know html or for that matter anything related to building a website. They provide you with all the help and tools. So I looked deeper into it. I saw their website and was very impressed, and then I saw their price and was equally depressed. I let the idea hanging in the air for sometime.

I then searched the net for the reviews on Site Build It ,from people who had used their services in the past, to get an idea about what sort of company they were. I had been reading about an SBI scam review campaign floating around the Internet. However, after finding out that was a lie, it gave me some confidence and I wrote an email to SBI, asking them to clear a few doubts which had sprung in my mind. I never expected a reply, therefore I was more than astonished when I got a reply from a real person, within 24 hours. They said they will take care of everything from hosting, to building and traffic and a whole lot of other things that I did not know anything about.

After a good 6 months of oscillating between 'to go for it' or 'not to go for it', I finally decided to 'go for it'.

The best decision I ever made

Now, I am a proud member of the SBI family and will recommend it to anyone, especially for people who fall under my category (with no technical knowledge). The best is that they are very helpful and professional. It doesn’t matter which country you are living in, you can build a website through them from anywhere. All you need is an ‘idea’ to build your website on. If you don’t have one, they even help you with that.

My first milestone

So, here I am with my website, which still has a long way to go. I try to add more recipes and health information as time allows. I feel that I am achieving something, thanks to 'Solo Build It'.

Finally, I hope you enjoy this website. If you have any suggestions of how I can make this site better, then please write to me. You may leave a comment on a recipe by writing in the comment box at the end of each page. You can also use the 'contact us' page to write to me.

Take care, eat well, and be happy and healthy. Thank you for your time, please visit again.

I think it's enough about me, why don't you browse some recipes on creative cooking corner home.