Why a Desi Blog, and Why Now?

In blogs on December 1, 2007 at 7:40 pm

Let’s first put away these questions if they’re vexing your mind at all.

You will agree, I’m sure, that there’s nothing more that a Mallu would like than his or her own soap box, so blog envy probably runs rampant in every Mallu heart. And it’s been no different for me. Now while I’ve nursed these feelings for sometime, what pushed me over the edge, was a simply delightful Andhra blog (http://www.nandyala.org/mahanandi/ ) that I came across while doing a little research on Kerala recipes in preparation for our upcoming Christmas dinner – wholesome, transparent, focused, imaginative… the adjectives came rushing out of my mouth on browsing through Mahanandi. Both blogger and bloggees seemed equally worthy subjects for the desi equivalent of a Norman Rockwell painting! Consider the recent post and comments on Mahanandi:

“Aloo Gobi with Kasuri Methi

You know how it is sometimes. You prepare a new recipe, you like it so much, you have to make it again the next day. That’s what happened to me with cauliflower. I loved the gobi I prepared last weekend very much, I made it again today. This time, I also added few potatoes to the pot. The friendship between brain-like cauliflower and belly-like, comforting potatoes is legendary. The fragrant kasuri methi and the sweet golden raisins addition made this lovely friendship even more endearing to me. I can surely say that this is the best cauliflower curry I have ever made next to my amma’s recipe. Good use of cauliflower that’s in season.(Recipe follows)
Busy days. See you again on Sunday.

Posted by Indira ©Copyrighted in Potato, Cauliflower, Methi, Kasuri Methi (Tuesday November 27, 2007 at 5:40 pm- permalink)

      1. Thanks for detailed post Indiragaru. Seeing your previous short post, I was worried if everything is OK. Now I know all is well. )Comment by Balu — November 27, 2007 @ 5:58 pm
      2. Hello Balu: Everything is fine, thanks for your concern. I was experimenting with the last post and I didn’t want to disturb the peaceful looking photos with my words.:)
        Hope you had a nice thanksgiving weekend!Comment by Indira — November 27, 2007 @ 6:15 pm


Understandably, that got my competitive juices going and I thought surely one can find a Malayali blog to match? When I searched for “Malayali cooking”, I was simply shocked at what Google threw me up! Both in number and kind! almost 364,000 matches, or so it said, almost all of them selling cook books and tour packages in Quillon, or Alleppey! Nothing with the taste and personality of Mahanandi. When I changed my search to “Malayali blogs” the spectrum widened to now include matrimonials and real estate in Quillon or Alleppey!

I did come across one that seemed to offer something refreshingly different (http://www.keralatips.org/) and a couple of sites that ostensibly tracked all the Kerala blogs the worldover (keralaclick.com and onkerala.com), all of which deserves a post of its own.

Browsing through Keralatips was, I must say an exercise in pure nostalgia but on reading one particular exchange of comments my hopes for finding something wholesome and clean ( a la Biden’s Obama) were, as they say, dashed!

Here’s one fiercesome exchange between two of the Keralatips readers – I’ll leave the names out…

“Reader 1: ___is just another, wannabe phirangi, white judeo-christian nationalist aka western look at Kerala.. ___, As if we dont have enough to deal with.. ….

Reader 2: Your character sketch of ____leaves me to believe that not only are you ignorant, you are also illiterate. I would assume that anyone with a passion for writing drivel the way you do, would at least take the time to know more about what you are spewing venom against. But alas, in the true tradition of all your worthless influences, from our beloved state, you choose to leave nuggets of your ill-researched bullshit.

Here’s a quick analysis of you…from me…your country cousin.You were a sub standard student through school, had the popularity of a cholera outbreak throughout your life, a career that doesnt amount to much, ……….

You wish you were capable enough to pump gas!!


What is it about Malayalis that gets them into fisticuffs with one and all, I asked my husband when I had picked myself off the floor from reading that exchange.

“Malayalis are intellectuals!” he explained in a self-serving way.

Well, intellectual or not, let’s say, I perceive a distinct market opportunity – and so I’m here to offer something tasteful and contemporary, while representing the Mallu diaspora with distinction without of course getting into a blogfight with my peers at Malayali blogs elsewhere; I will yield the realm of cooking and crafts to my admirable Andhra blogger counterparts, and will try to compensate for that lack by other contributions yet to be outlined – for now it’s all vapor-ware being offered, so you will just have to be patient, and I will do my best to make the wait worth the while.

[UPDATE: I must say that I might have to eat my words about Malayali blogs – I happened to stumble upon what seems to be the meta-blog of Kerala blogs called “Kerala Blog Roll” at http://www.cs.princeton.edu/~mp/malayalam/blogs.html . That illustrious effort displays a vast diversity amongst Kerala Bloggers – guess we are a talkative bunch – who number over 700 it looks like! And while I haven’t had the time to take a look at more than a couple, the ones that I did look at, seemed informed, contemporary, and very, very entertaining! I may have misspoke – I now think, the malayali blog is alive and well! Wonderful! Now please make a little room for me 🙂 ]




Pais & Peas

Update: Thinking of moving this blog over to http://paisleysandpeacocks.blogspot.com


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