Meet Manali

Hey there! I am Manali, the cook and photographer behind this blog! I am so happy you’re here!


About Me and My Family

I was born and brought up in India. My dad is an Indian government officer and my mom is a housewife. I have 2 younger brothers and they all live in India. I am blessed to have a such a wonderful family, who have supported me in every decision of my life.

I live in Seattle with my husband, Sarvesh. I moved to USA in December 2011, a week after my wedding. Me and my husband were best friends for 10 years before we tied the knot [I guess we realized that we wouldn’t find anyone better than each other after 10 years!!]. Yeah we have a very filmy story, a Bollywood movie on it is definitely possible! ? Sarvesh is my biggest supporter, it’s his constant encouragement that pushes me to give my best to this blog and to everything else in life in general. And not only that, he also handles all the technical stuff on this blog. The blog design, logo, everything is done by him. I have zero technical knowledge so it’s all him.

About Cook With Manali

I started this blog in 2013 to keep all my recipes at one place. It was Sarvesh’s suggestion to start this blog so that I could have a record of all my recipes, rather than scribbling them on papers all the time. I thought it was a good idea since it would also help me kill some time. At that time, I did not have a work visa and was struggling to pass time in this new country. What started as a time pass, became my passion over time. I am a self taught cook, baker and photographer. Whatever I have learned is through trial and error. I have failed so many times but because I was so passionate about getting it right, I just kept trying till I got it right. That’s why I say if I can cook, anyone can. I had never baked a cake in my life till 4 years back and I know it’s difficult to believe it considering the number of baking recipes I have on the blog! We never had an oven in our house growing up, in fact ovens aren’t still very common in India but back then they were literally non existent. But I fell so much in love with the art and science of baking that now I literally live and breath it.

Cook With Manali is a vegetarian food blog. I have been vegetarian for almost 15 years now and my husband is a born vegetarian. Through my recipes I want to show everyone that vegetarian cooking is just as delicious and not boring at all! India has countless vegetarian and vegan dishes that I grew up eating and I share all those and much more on this blog.


My Background

They say sometimes it takes a lifetime to realize your true passion! It couldn’t be more true in my case, thankfully I realized it before it was too late. I was always a good student in school and college and cooking was probably the last thing on my mind. I wish I could say that I was in love with cooking and baking since my childhood but that would be totally false. I never bothered to enter the kitchen. It was only after moving to the USA that I started spending time in the kitchen. Long story short, I realized that this is where my heart lies. Now I can’t stop thinking about cooking, recipes and food photography!

* I used to be a bookworm in school, yeah those nerdy students who never leave the book, yep that was me!
* I am a medical doctor, I did my MBBS from India.
* I also have an MBA in Health Care from University of Aberdeen in Scotland.

Keeping In Touch
If you have any questions or just want to say hello, please write to me at
I would reply to you at the earliest! You can also keep in touch with me through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.

Thank you for supporting me in this journey! ❤



265 thoughts on “Meet Manali

  1. Hi Manali, so glad to have come across your blog. I have not looked at many recipes, but I enjoy the simplicity of the ones I’ve seen so far. Do you have any recipes for the air fryer that doesn’t have to be deep-fried? LIke bonda, baji, etc.??

  2. Hi Manali, I stumbled upon your blog recently and loved your instagram account and your authenticity. It’s nice to know you live in the Pacific Northwest. If you ever do in-person cooking events, please let me know.

  3. Hi Manali! Just came across your blog and yesterday made your fantastic chana dal with onion, tomatoes and spices. I had half a packet (400g) of chana dal in my cupboard and so made double portions. So glad I did. My husband and I absolutely loved it! Thank you so much. Planning to try more of your recipes in the future.

    I live in south-west London, UK, and have been vegetarian for, gulp, 40 years. I have cooked a lot of Indian recipes – particularly Julie Sahni and Madhur Jaffrey – over the years. Dals are my go-to comfort food!

    Thank you again for giving us all these recipes!


  4. Hi Manali,
    I am Jay from Malaysia,thanks for sharing the recepies,it was awesome.
    Planning to try them out during the Good Friday.
    Thank you.

    1. Hi I am Naina from Virginia, USA, I would try this recipe asap probably by Good Friday too. Thanks for sharing all small tips to make this crispy and yummy yum.

  5. Heyo Manali,

    sooo happy i found your blog. Me and my wife are vegetarians and had the privileg to enjoy a couple of ayurvedic treatments in Kerala. Just cooked the Aloo Gobi. Marvelous! There are a lot of recipes out there in the satellites, but this one stands out. Can’t wait to explore the other delicacies on your page.

    Warm regards from Germany, Gregor

  6. Hi Manali,
    I am very excited to find your blog. So far I’ve only made the roti, but have visions of trying many other recipes.

    Have you written, or would you consider writing about indian spices and other ingredients that are not typically found in US (selfishly, because I am in the US, Seattle area incidentally 🙂) grocery stores? What they are, if there are any reasonable substitutions, and perhaps where *you* have found them, either locally or online? Even preferred brands if you have any.

    Keep up the great work and thanks for sharing all your hard earned knowledge!!

    1. Hi Kathy, sure I will try to write about it. If you are in the Seattle area, then there are plenty of Indian stores on the east side and there’s nothing that you can’t find here 🙂
      Please check these on east side-
      Mayuri Groceries
      Apna Bazar
      India Metro Hypermarket

  7. Hi Amali, I made the geera cookies today, and it is so amazing. I add ground cumin to almost everything I cook, so when I saw this cookie recipe, I thought right away I need to try that and am glad that I did. Yummy. I will continue to follow you. By the way, it was quick and simple as you said.

  8. Hello Manali

    While we do not have Indian family origins, my husband,I, our children and grandchildren love Indian food. And I love cooking it!! Christmas is at our house this year so we are having our first all Indian food Christmas dinner and several of your wonderful recipes will be included.. thanks for your inspiring website. Now I have asked Santa for your cookbook…!

  9. Love your blog! Every recipe I have tried is spot on. Your attention to detail shows in the directions you write for each recipe. Thank you! BTW I made the Chocolate Burfi on the blog for Diwali and it was a huge hit. I got so many compliments for it. Thank you so much!

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