Sunday, August 15, 2010

Day One

I'm a food and travel writer based in Miami Beach, Florida and I am going to blog a book along with what  ever else is on my mind. The book is called A Handful of Spices and was written by me over a period of seven years. I started by traveling around India cooking with chefs, housewives and in remote villages where the "stove" was a metal pail filled with coal or dried cow dung.  I spent years researching and writing the book only to have the publisher cancel my contract because I was a year late ( I had gone through some health-related issues). But no one can take away the knowledge I gained and the stories I wrote about every recipe--where it is from, who taught it to me or cooked with me. This will all be in the blog. Today I'm starting. I'll start the introduction later.   My blog is called Food India Cook as in reading my blog you will discover new foods, get to virtually visit India, and be able to cook the dishes I tell you about. Stay tuned to find out why I became so passionate about Indian food and culture that I spent years writing a book about it. Perhaps it is because my name, Linda almost spells India, but there's much more.

Meanwhile one week ago I returned from Grand Cayman Island, a delightful patch of coral rock and sand in the Caribbean on the far side of Cuba. The water there is crystal clear. Even when I swam out to the reef, I could see the coral, fish of neon bright colors and a turtle. I got to swim with gentle sting rays that are like big slippery cats and brush up against your legs. My guide, Eric has  a "pet" one he calls Friday, a girl sting ray that comes swimming up to him every time he takes his boat out to the sandbar where hundreds wait to be fed and touched by humans. This is not a Disneyland kind of thing, it is all natural. The rays just started hanging out at the sandbar as fishermen cleaned their fish at the edge of the reef so they wised up and started coming around for a free meal. My trip was not a vacation, I was there learning about a new section of the island that has been developed in a very nice way and has some Miami chefs opening outposts on the island. They are starting to work with local farmers and use locally grown produce such as Thai wing beans, mammoth basil (huge leaves), tomatoes, and and Indian type of gourd. It is the end of the growing season so there will be lots more in the cooler months--cool being relative when talking about a tropical climate. I'm working on a format for a farm to table chef based TV show but alas the chef with a restaurant on Cayman wasn't interested so I will turn to another chef friend I think might have the time and interest.  More soon....

1 comment:

Sasha @ Global Table Adventure said...

I'm sorry to hear about your contract falling through, but am glad to be able to read your work through this blog! :)

I'm particularly looking forward to learning more about spices.