About Me

Who am I?

My name is Manoj Kumar, living in Australia, and my ethnic background is Indian. So, I have two places close to my heart – India and Australia. A close third one is New Zealand – a place that I backpacked the first time.

What do I like to do?

A lot of time during the week goes towards my work. In my spare time, I practice eastern spirituality, doodle a bit, go on long walks (love the Australian bushland!), and watch some Youtube vlogs when I can. I like to read and write a lot too.

And cooking?

Well, that happens when I am hungry and need to prepare something. I wouldn’t call it a hobby but a necessity. I am not a major fan of junk food and prefer a nice hot meal, the most important being breakfast and lunch. Dinner is skipped if I have a heavy lunch else it’s a light dinner. Due to my spiritual practice, I have dietary restrictions (or possibilities!) – no meat (including eggs, gelatines, animal lipase, and animal fats), no alcohol, no onion, no garlic, no mushrooms, and no caffeine. I do consume dairy and honey, as animal products. So, all my cooking is 100% vegetarian.

What’s your specialty?

I gravitate mainly towards Indian (or South Asian) cooking but I LOVE Middle-Eastern, Mediterranean, Italian, Chinese, and Japanese cooking as well. My Chinese and Japanese cooking usually happens for dinner when I want to cook something in a hurry and not heavy. Going forward, I would really like to learn and cook more Middle-Eastern and Mediterranean varieties.

And your cooking style?

Whatever the cuisine is, I cook them carefully but really quickly! Usually, I don’t spend more than 30 mins cooking as I am hard-pressed for time. All my meals, whether it be workdays or weekends are cooked fresh at home. If I wake up sufficiently early on weekdays, I cook my office lunch in the morning also, else it’s the previous day’s lunch/dinner.

Unrecipes – what’s with that?

It’s true. I don’t have a set recipe I use for cooking. When it’s time to cook, I look at the vegetables and other items I have and then decide how I am going to bring them together in a pan. The recipe then gradually evolves. So, every meal I cook is actually different and even when I am repeating a certain dish, it has changed in some way. There are times I look up a recipe online to get some sort of foundation to begin with, but it will undergo changes when I am in front of the stove. In this blog, I wanted to share what I cooked (with/without recipes) and hope you will like it.

Enjoy cooking, experimenting, and creating!

I look something like this…