I have been blogging for almost five years at my food blog simply.food. Through blogging, over the years I have made many blogger friends and I have had the opportunity to meet some of them in person at blog events, pr events, blog summits and also at various meets we have organised amongst ourselves. There are a few bloggers that I have particularly formed a bond with and now we have become firm friends.We chat on the phone, meet up for create, cook and click sessions and generally have fun together.On Saturday I had arranged to meet one such friend Mina Joshi from Give me some spice. Mina is a very down to earth and easy to get on with and I really enjoy her company. She is an established blogger and what I find most endearing about her is that her personality shows through her blog. I love the simplicity and care she puts into each and every post with detailed photos and instructions.
Mina lives in a beautiful town in Cambridgeshire called Ely. It has a beautiful cathedral there and a lovely riverside. The drive to Ely from London is somewhat long, it is almost 2 hours, although I am sure you can do it in less time if you were familiar with the route. I arrived at Minas and she greeted me with open arms and a lovely welcoming hug. Over a hot cup of masala chai (tea), we chatted about food, food and more food. Mina recently started teaching cookery classes so it was great to learn some tips and tricks from her. You too can learn to cook from Mina if you live in Cambridgeshire you can book the classes at Ely College. After fueled with tea we went for a lovely walk around Ely, we saw the amazing cathedral and the small produce market. Ely is very picturesque and pretty. The weather although was chilly was in our favour a we had a glimmer of sunshine to enjoy too.
We returned home after a refreshing walk and Mina served a late lunch of Puri ( puffed spiced Indian bread), tangy spicy Chole aloo (chickpeas and potato curry) and Ondwo a savory baked lentil cake with some delicious green coriander chutney and her special carrot chutney.
Stuffed to the brim I did not think any more food would pass my lips when Mina tempted me with her scrumptious Gajjar Halwa ( carrot dessert) with lashing of cream. It was delicious and despite feeling so full I managed a generous helping of it. You can see the Mina's Gajjar Halwa recipe here.Whilst eating we chatted non stop about everything and nothing and where time flew we were not even aware.In hind sight I think I feel a little guilty as we probably bored Mina's other half totally in the process with our excited chattering.
Soon the day was drawing to a close and it was almost 6.00 o'clock. I had to force my self to leave as the drive home was going to be lonely and long through the countryside. I was surprised even more by Mina when she presented me with a goody bag of some lovely gifts of Carrot chutney, Ondwo, Carrot halwa, A lovely cakey calender, notepad holder, a pretty little cushion and a citrus chopping board to match my blog logo very apt !!
I am sharing some photos of all my gifts. All the food in the photos was prepared by Mina Joshi. If your mouth is watering at the sight of this yummy food you can check all her recipes out at her blog "Give me some Spice." I had a wonderful time and I hope that next time Mina will visit me so I can reciprocate the hospitality.