On the Couch with Ashia Ismail-Singer

Cook, author and guide Ashia Ismail-Singer. | Lottie Hedley
Cook, author and guide Ashia Ismail-Singer. | Lottie Hedley

With a passion for food, and determination that has driven her to author three cookbooks, Ashia Ismail Singer is a force to be reckoned with - and we were lucky enough to sit down with her to learn what fuels her insatiable appetite for creating dishes and experimenting with different flavours.

Ashia's mouth-watering cooking has been inspired by her Indian heritage and upbringing in Malawi and the UK and has shaped her culinary tours around India.

So, pour some chai tea and join us on the couch with Ashia Ismail Singer. 

Firstly, describe yourself in five words:

- Energetic

- Enthusiastic

- Warm

- Friendly

- Personable

Chai Tea |  <i>Christall Lowe</i>

What are you most proud of?

Writing my 3 cookbooks, having my two children and travelling across to the other side of the world on my own and not knowing anyone.

After moving to New Zealand in my twenties, I missed my mum’s cooking, so I started creating her dishes and experimenting. I also started writing a food blog, because I wanted more people to see that cooking Indian food doesn’t have to be difficult.
- Ashia

Do you have a life motto? 

Dream big, never give up!

What is the best travel advice someone has given you?

Travel with an open mind.

Stuffed Panipuri |  <i>Manja Wachsmuth</i>

How do you define ‘adventure travel’? 

For me any travel is an adventure, whether it's a cycling trip, walking or a culinary tour - you are experiencing something different, it opens your mind to amazing possibilities and connects you to the rest of the world.

Three items you pack for every trip:

- Something to read

- Camera/phone

- Writing journal

What are the key factors you consider when selecting an adventure travel destination?

How does my trip impact the locals? What are the benefits to the local economy? 

Pistachio Cake |  <i>Christall Lowe</i> Cook, author and guide Ashia Ismail-Singer. |  <i>Lottie Hedley</i> Fresh Pastries |  <i>Manja Wachsmuth</i>

Using simple spices and a blend of East and West you can create authentic Indian-inspired dishes. I have drawn inspiration from the different countries I have lived in, and created modern Indian food to suit the way we live today.

- Ashia

Chilli Prawns + Potatoes |  <i>Manja Wachsmuth</i>

Any training tips to prepare for the trip you are leading?

Come with an open mind. Try everything.

Look at it as an opportunity to give something back, you are lucky enough to visit them so leave them with a good impression.

Feeling hungry for an adventure? See all of Ashia's culinary trips.

Culinary Trip, India, Cooking

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