About this Blog
Hi! My name is Ritika Barmecha. Spice My Day is my food blog that highlights vegetarian, healthy cooking. Being a spice enthusiast, you will find me using a variety of spices in my food. I encourage you to do the same. Life and food can both be mundane if we do not spice them up. Using a hint of one spice or sprinkling a little of another can enhance even the simplest of dishes. Just like spices in food, life too presents itself in different colors and tastes. Moments of happiness, sorrow, hope, and even fear are just examples of how “spices” reflect in our lives. We need a combination of these elements in life to challenge us, to inspire us, and to live life to the fullest. So I ask you to join in my journey to experience all that spices have to offer. I welcome you to share and join my passion of “spices” in food and life!
Growing up in Kolkata, India, I ate simple home-cooked vegetarian food that my mom and grandma made. Going to a restaurant was a treat and indulging in junk food, a rarity. Our groceries were bought from the farmers market and my mom was very particular in her choices. While shopping the produce section, she would frequently pick up the vegetables, carefully inspect them, and make sure there were no blemishes on the outside. As I shop today, I do the very same; I remember my mom every time I do, because she taught me that buying good quality ingredients is the first step for cooking a good meal.
As a young girl, pizza was the only international dish I knew. My mother and I used to buy the pizza bread base, make an Indian version of marinara sauce, and top it off with a local pasteurized cheese. At the time, my food vocabulary was limited; however, after getting married and moving to Israel, my knowledge of food expanded. Having lived there many years, my husband’s family had assimilated well to the local food culture and they were very excited for me to enjoy it too. At first, the dinner table seemed daunting because the flavors were so different from what I was used to. The first time I ate an Arugula salad, I hated it! The taste was so bitter. I was amazed how people thought “grass” was palatable! I also refused to eat mushrooms, because I had never seen them before. However, as the years went by, I spent a lot of time helping my mother-in-law in the kitchen and learnt to appreciate different food preparations and flavors.
In 2003, after moving to NYC, I was astounded by the diversity of the population and the food. Experimenting recipes from cookbooks became my fascination. Not long after, I enrolled into the chef’s training program at Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts. The training introduced me to ingredients and food preparations that were unfamiliar and untried, taught me discipline in the kitchen and instilled a confidence to venture beyond my comfort zone.
I have been living in Geneva, Switzerland since the Sep 2019, and one of the things that truly makes me happy and inspires me is the quality of produce that I buy at the farmers market. Every week there are new offerings of the season and thanks to that, a new variety of dishes on my dinner table. Through my new venture of Spice Club lunches*, I hope to share my dishes with you and spread joy by bringing together diverse people on the same table. *Please see the events section for more information.