Ravi Chandran – A Software Engineer by Profession, loves Nature Photography, started cooking since the early teens, a doting father to two beautiful daughters and the author of “Nalabaagam“. Very apt name for the blog 🙂 🙂
(Nala is a Hindu Mythology character that appears in the Epic Mahabarat. His culinary repertoire was well known that the word Nalapaka became a synonym for excellence in culinary arts)
Randomly I started following Ravi Anna on Instagram two years ago. His feed was full of interesting still photography, sunsets, handmade jewelry & quilling works done by his daughters and on top of it delicious food pictures too. Initially I thought he was just clicking the food pictures cooked by his better half 😉 Only later I came to know that all the food photos posted in his feed were cooked by the man himself.
The reasons which inspired me the most are he is very consistent in posting good quality pictures, his recipes are simple & easy to understand, never boasts so much about his foodpictures/blogs everywhere, a modest personality altogether who does his job sincerely and keeps on marching forward.
Here is the fun Q&A with him 🙂 Read & Enjoy!
This is not a gender-bias based question. But as far as I know sometimes women in a family will never allow men to take over kitchen. I may even be wrong but how did you break that barrier and started cooking?
Men cooking in our family is a very normal scene. For few generations in the past we did not have girl child in the family. So my dad used to take over kitchen regularly. Now he is doing it whole and sole 365 days. When my mom had to take bed rest due to illness for a few months, I started cooking at age of 13 along with my dad.
When and how the blog ‘Nalabaagam‘ happened?
Nalabaagam is 18 months old and is my first full fledged food blog. However, Nalabaagam is 3rd stage in the metamorphosis of my food blog. Earlier I had a recipes section in my social site (decommissioned) and for a brief period of time blogged in google blog-spot.
Being a full time working profession how do you find time to cook elaborate meals , post the recipes then and there as well?
In a country like Japan, how is the vegetarian food scene?
There nothing called vegetarian in Japan except in Indian restaurants and a few Buddhist restaurants. However, if you know language then you can negotiate and customize the ingredients with chef. If not either compromise on your vegetarianism or just starve. Most of Japanese cuisines have at least katsuo dashi (tuna stock).
Who is the best critic in your family? Is it your wife or the daughters? Do they love your experimental dishes?
Our younger one. She is a foodie, loves and dares to eat my dishes. When she tastes and signs off, take it for granted the dish will be really tasty.
Who is your inspiration when it comes to cooking?
My Dad, Mom and Mom-in-law. Although my mom cooks only traditional south Indian cuisines, she is dedicated never hesitated to feed people when they are in need.
Are you an instinct based cook or do you follow a particular recipe (maybe from a book or blog) to the tee?
I refer to food blogs to get an idea of the dish, but mostly customization takes precedence to suit our taste.
What is the best appreciation you have ever received from your readers?
Many of my readers/friends appreciate the clarity and quality of photos, but only a few had chance to taste my dishes.
What is your kids’ favorite dish in your cooking?
I love your simple elegant Food Photography style. ‘Keep it Clean’ – this phrase comes to my mind whenever i see your food pics. How did you choose this style?
To be frank I never had experience in food photos, I am a nature photography lover. Lately (started when I was living in Mumbai briefly) started to photograph to share with family members. Thanks for mentioning ‘Keep it Clean’ – I use similar phrase when giving tips to others. I have shared some of tips in my blog http://nalabaagam.in/category/tips/
From south Indian full meals,apple pies,pasta to strawberry Panna Cotta you cook almost all popular cuisines with ease. What is your major source of learning? What motivates you to try out these cuisines?
Which place in banglore do you recommend for foodies to try out awesome Masala Dosa & Benne Dosa ?
When you go to Bengaluru, Vidhyathi Bhavan, Basavangudi must be in your itinerary to relish masala dosa.
Finally any tip for men who love to cook but are still hesitant about it 😉
Never shy out to cook, men can do better even at kitchen. There might be failures initially, but aren’t they stepping stones for our success. I recommend to try to cook a simple dish which is different from your routine and definitely your family will like it.
To read his recipes check the blog link below :