Welcome to Cook Like a Bong – where you can Master (or at least, be conversant with) the Art of Bengali Cuisine.
We’re Sudeshna Banerjee and Kalyan Banerjee and we are on a mission to create a comprehensive one stop site for Bengali food. This site contains 150+ recipes that are either authentic Bengali or recipes that Bengalis like. Sudeshna is the chef and Kalyan is the webmaster.
What you can expect from this website?
This website hosts 150+ authentic home cooked Bengali recipes and food that Bengalis like. The recipes include mainly Bengali dishes, dishes that Sudeshna has learnt from her grandmother, her mother and her aunts and also some that she created. So, you can find a nice blend of traditional recipes with the not so old ones.
Plus, the site hosts several food blog resources – events, food bloggers interview, commentary on top blogs, carnival of Bengali cuisine and the likes.
About Sudeshna Banerjee
Currently, I’m pursuing Masters in Biotechnology. I completed my B.Tech from the same college. I also did a post grad from IBAB (Institute of Bioinformatics and Applied Biotechnology).
How this website?
I came outside Calcutta to pursue my post grad studies. Predictably, within just a couple of weeks I started missing home cooked Bengali food. Bengali Restaurants in Bangalore were either too costly for a student like me, or didn’t serve authentic Bengali food that I craved for or were far off from where I lived. I had been staying out of home and hence away from mom-prepared-dishes for the past two years. I love the taste of home cooked meals and so started cooking my own food. I had to ask my mom every time something new I wanted to cook. I started writing this blog to help people like me and also to share a common platform with all those who love spending time in the kitchen.
About Kalyan Banerjee
I’m Technical Consultant to Law Firms, IIT Roorkee Alum, Building Bengali Cuisine, weekend traveller, travel blogger and a Web 2.0 geek.
Sudeshna already had a fairly popular blog on Bengali cuisine. I joined forces to give the blog a more user friendly design, improve searchability, improvise content and some other tech stuff. And in next 6 months, the blog clocked 100,000 pageviews!
I write on this site about 2 things – Bengali food elsewhere and Tech aspects of a food blog.
If you must know
Sudeshna is Bangal and Kalyan is Ghoti, and thus they have frequent fights over the issue. Do you?
Here’s a more detailed version of why we think can create the most comprehensive resource on Bengali Food.
The diagram below outlines About Bengalicuisine.
If you’ve time, here’s a detailed explanation of the above diagram:
Love for Food – it has 3 components:
- Cooking – Sudeshna started cooking when she was staying in a hostel, away from home cooked authentic Bengali food – more out of need than interest. Slowly, she developed her panache for cooking and started her blog. Kalyan, being an awful cook, tries to see every recipe from the eyes of an inexperienced cook – easier recipes the better. Thus, each post tries to strike a balance between these extremes.
- Photography – All recipe posts in this blog have pictures, the most recent ones being taken with Nikon <60D>. Visuals are extremely crucial for anything related to food. That’s why they have all mouth watering photographs in restaurant banners and menus. Do you recall the last time went to a restaurant and wanted to try out a dish just because it had a finger licking pic?
- Reading – Sudeshna keeps herself busy with recipe books, food related magazines, food blogs (non Bengali food) and Photoshop / Picasa. Kalyan voraciously reads SEO, Web 2.0 and Internet marketing related stuff. Both Sudeshna and Kalyan read papers on regional cuisine (sample).
Geography – connections are of 3 kinds
- West Bengal – Familiarity breeds contempt. Well, usually, but not with a khaddo roshik bangali. Sudeshna, born in Kolkata (Calcutta) and brought up both in North Bengal and Kolkata, brings this component – authentic Bangali heshel. Kalyan’s parents are from West Bengal – father from Bankura and mother from Nadia.
- India minus West Bengal – Sudeshna has also spent almost 2 yrs in Bangalore and is now back to Kolkata. Kalyan was born and brought up in Dhanbad, Jharkhand (erstwhile Bihar). He has stayed in Roorkee, Uttaranchal for 4 years; Noida, UP (NCR) for a year and lives in Bangalore (Bengaluru) since the last 2 years. A persistent non bong component of Sudeshna and Kalyan always try to analyze how non Bengali reader will perceive the recipes and other posts.
- Bangladesh –Sudeshna’s grandparents migrated from Dhaka to Calcutta during partition, bestowing upon her a Bangal lineage. Kalyan has a very remote Bangladesh connection – his mother hails from Nadia (WB), a district which shares borders with Bangladesh. Sneaky, huh?
Prior Blogging experience
- Food – Sudeshna started food blogging in April 2008 with her wordpress blog. The blog quickly became fairly known to Indian food blogging community. The current site imported all recipes and comments (but sadly, not Page Rank) from her original blog.
- Travel – Kalyan blogged on his weekend travels and contributed to several travel sites. His area – weekend getaways from Bangalore and his Austin (Texas) Travel Diary.
- Other – Kalyan enjoyed his stints as a blogger of several genres – personal, book review and travel. Sudeshna maintains her personal dairy and had a short stint with her personal blog.
Webmaster – Here’re the components of being a webmaster of BengaliCuisine:
- Content – Every post tries to give away more than what you expected to read when you clicked on its link. A recipe post has several sections – quotation, trivia, also known as, cooking stats, pictures, ingredients, preparation, nutrition stats and related posts.
- Design – Content is King but presentation is at least King’s Prime Minister. Remember all those sites with wonderful recipes but awful presentation – difficult to navigate, no pictures, no information other than ‘show to’ of the recipe. We designed this blog in a way that treats the reader like a bong would treat a guest – intuitive navigation, searchable, post synopsis, full content feed, personal attention to comments, add on widgets at sidebar etc. Athithi Devo Bhav.
- Add on Features – We’ve used several widgets in an attempt to make the bengalicuisine experience an enriching one – Top Commentators (the link isn’t a nofollow), Recent Commentators, Post views, Recent posts, Categories, Tags, Most Popular posts and Tweet blender.
Hope this detailed ‘About Us’ gives you more information than you expected when you clicked on ‘About’. If not, please comment and let us know what else would you like to know. We would update the page accordingly.