Food Bloggers We Love – Mirchi Tales

The lovely Kiran Afzal is the food maestro behind Mirchi Tales, a food blog she grew from scratch and which has steadily gained a following. Her pictures are incredible and dare I say, you will find an obsession with salted caramel on her blog. So without further ado, let’s chat! 
  1. Tell us a bit about yourself, what do you do?
 My name is Kiran, and I run a food & lifestyle blog titled ‘Mirchi Tales’, which focuses on simple and wholesome Pakistani recipes, travel adventures and a bit of Desi fusion. I started my corporate career in the field of market research after I did my MBA. However, after 6 years of being in the field I realized that my passion was food and I switched my field to digital marketing where I was able to work as a food writer, project manager of a food & recipe portal and a food producer. 
  1. How did you get into food blogging?
 I got into food blogging after I made a batch of chocolate cake for colleagues at work. It was devoured in minutes, and the praise I received made me realize that people really enjoyed the food I make. That’s when I decided to start a food blog, as that enabled me to write about food and explore the culinary industry while still working a full-time job.
  1. What do you think makes a successful blog?

Originality and consistency

The best blogs are ones where the blogger’s personality shines through in every single blog post. Any person who wants to start a blog should write about what he/she is passionate about in the manner that they feel comfortable. Even if the topic is mundane, the blog author’s enthusiasm on the topic will engage the audience, but if the author tries to copy other people or follow another person’s script, that will be obvious.

  1. How do you plan your recipes?

There are two ways I plan my recipes.

The first is experimental where I come up with new recipes based on either season or what I am in the mood for eating. For instance, I am in the mood for a savory rice dish so I will look at ingredients in the fridge, or go to the grocery store and grab a few things that appeal to me. Then I will read a few recipes online for inspiration and then start cooking. I will keep a notebook handy to write what I do. Once the recipe is made, I will try and tweak it before I photograph and publish it.

The second are those regular recipes that are cooked at my home, or my mom’s recipes. Those are tried and tested recipes, but I make them myself so that I can document the process and add instructions and notes as required. In fact, I end up using my own blog as a reference at times.

  1. If you were to design a cooking challenge show how will you go about it?

Now that is a difficult question. I think I would probably go the Masterchef Australia route. Less drama, motivational judges, and a friendly vibe among the participants despite the on-going competition.

  1. Cookbooks or Googling a recipe? Why?

Cookbooks. A good cookbook talks about the basics – kitchen essentials, grocery shopping, ingredients and substitutions, techniques and basic recipes before moving onto a comprehensive guide about the cuisine, methodology etc. This is something that is just not possible from a stand-alone online recipe. Plus once I try out a recipe from a book I love, I can add sticky notes and keep referring to it again and again whereas I end up forgetting the website that I tried my last recipe from.

  1. What is your favorite achievement to date?

Getting hired as a food producer at Htv. Being able to convert a passion into a career is one of the best feelings ever, and that is what working there made me feel.

  1. Ammi ke haath ka kya pasand hai?

Kofte, in salan form and dahi kofte which has lots of onion and a dry masala paste versus a salan. Melt in the mouth and absolutely delicious. No one can make them like her.

  1. What is your least favorite thing to make?

Lasagne. Just boiling the water for the strips takes so much time, plus making sure that the strips don’t stick together is another hassle. Lastly, all the layering is a bit too time consuming for my personal preference.

  1. What is your fast food guilty pleasure?

People may not call this fast food, but its comfort street food. Any and all sort of noodles. The Asian kind, not Italian. Chowmein, Pad Thai, Drunken Noodles, Rice Noodles and more, I can have a noodle bowl at any time of the day.

You can catch up with Mirchi Tales on Facebook and Instagram.