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Daily Inspiration: Meet Sarmita Chakraborty

Today we’d like to introduce you to Sarmita Chakraborty.

Hi Sarmita, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I started first with Instagram about 6 years ago. My first post was on Jan 26, 2016. I didn’t quite have a plan at the time that I would post food- it was more a mishmash of inspirational quotes, sketches I did, places I traveled so on and so forth. From there I kind of naturally progressed to posting about food. I joke with my husband that I used to think everyone cooks at home like I do- I have one vegetarian (the husband), one kid who’s a fussy eater, another kid who loves variety and then there’s me, a lover of spices. In the world of Instagram began the fun journey of journaling simple homemade food I cook for my family and friends. There are recipes that I’ve created or improvised myself as well as ones that have been passed to me through other family members like my mum, my sister, and sometimes even what I learned from friends. Cooking for me is always fun. There is only so much one can post on Instagram- there were still a ton of recipes I would think of and to do that, I had to go somewhere. My head is always bristling with ideas! Thus https://sarchakra.com was born. Now I have a place to document what I was cooking in a way that Instagram could not. I’ve intentionally not gone the route of advertisements and sponsored posts on my website because nothing frustrates me more than when I want to look at a recipe and hundreds of pop ups and advertisements bombard the reader and you have to keep scrolling and scrolling to the bottom of the page to get to any reading. Mine has been a natural, organic growth on my website with people who like the simplicity and ease of my food and can connect with me personally. One of my favorite sayings in life is ‘find your gift and give it away’.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
In the world of social media, promotions and advertisements it has been challenging to hold on to those principles I was talking about in my previous response. There are some amazingly talented bloggers that I can get inspired from daily but there are also the distractions out there of promotions and sponsorship-driven posts that drown the bloggers that want to grow organically. I can understand why some bloggers choose to capitalize on their blogs or social media posts but it also can potentially negatively impact those that believe in natural progression without pushing for content, driven by self advertisements or incentives. You’d be surprised at the number of businesses offering me engagement ( likes, comments and follows) by contacting me every day either via email or Instagram direct messaging. It makes me think that there is definitely a demand out there for this sort of thing. I wish there was sincerity in ‘what you see is what you get’- but unfortunately that is not always the case. Having said that, I don’t take life too seriously. Who was it that said- ‘Don’t take life too seriously- you’ll never get out of it alive?’ So I have fun with my blog, my creations and my life. Also, I have to mention that I have a 86 lb lab retriever mix called Geezer. He is an absolute hyperactive bundle of joy.

Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I am a mom of two and a food blogger. In my previous lifetime (ie. before moving to the US) after completing my Masters in English Literature, I trained in Oxford to become a teacher. I worked as a teacher in London, Nairobi and Oxford, England. During my time in Atlanta, I volunteered with the International Rescue Committee helping with the Adult Literacy program. Food is my passion and I love creating new recipes. My kids are older now (one having completed his Master’s and the other starting college this year), so I have a lot of time to do what I love and am passionate about. When I’m not cooking, I am reading (another passion of mine) or traveling with my husband. My absolute favorite place to visit is Hawaii. Next on my bucket list is the Maldives. My blog is mostly about easy day-to-day cooking for the busy family and showing that cooking does not necessarily have to be complicated. Using readily available things in the pantry and fridge, you can feed a crowd! Most of all, have fun with it.

Risk taking is a topic that people have widely differing views on – we’d love to hear your thoughts.
I believe that one cannot live life without taking any risks. A life without any risk-taking is pretty boring in my opinion. With risk also, comes life-changing rewards. Stepping outside of your comfort zone has its risks but it makes you more resilient too. I was raised in India and have lived in Kenya and then in London and Oxford, England. We were settled in London and life with my husband and 2 small kids was simple but good. The school the kids were at was literally less than 100 yards away and we could even hear the school bell ring! So the decision to pack lock, stock and barrel and move to another country in 2008 was a huge risk. We had only ever been to Atlanta twice and knew nothing about living there. After ten years in Atlanta and one kid in college and another ready to begin high school, we moved again in 2018! This time, it was Minnesota. Needless to say, the first winter was a huge shock to the system but after the first year, shall we say, we are getting used to that too! Did we enjoy the ride? Yes, absolutely. The only downside I would say about taking risks is sometimes you lose touch with people you used to be close too. Sure, there is modern technology but nothing comes close to in person contact. We found that to be so true especially when everything went on a lockdown during Covid.

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