Indian Simmer Loves- Journey Kitchen

Last one week was a bit of an emotional roller coaster for me and my friends and family. Some fabulous highs and then some sudden lows. I was confused how to take it all in and then I met Kulsum online and we started talking. As usual she knew how to say the right things and bring me back to smile. Has it ever happened to you that someone makes you feel so comfortable and slowly sneaks into your life and you do not even know how he or she looks like? Like a pen friend you have never had as a child. That’s what Kulsum and I have become during the course of this one year that we’ve known each other. We started our food blogs almost around the same time. She writes a lovely food blog Journey Kitchen where she shares her recipes, beautifully blending the modern and traditional Indian cooking. She is funny, spontaneous and LOVELY to talk to and it shows clearly in her writing. With her sweet stories she can easily become a part of you and with her approachable recipes she will make you cook India food. Don’t even make me start on her photography skills, her photographs are nothing less than an eye candy. So let’s meet Kulsum Kunwa of Journey Kitchen!

Tell us about yourself and what you would say is your food philosophy?
To start with, my name is Kulsum and I’m the blogger behind the blog Journey Kitchen. I’m an Indian expat born and brought up in a small Middle Eastern country of Kuwait. Then, life took a turn and my family shifted back to India for good. But as luck had it, I got married and moved back to Kuwait to live with my husband! Growing up, I was clearly the most enthusiastic foodie in the house. I criticized, demanded and talked about food with my mom all the time, but it was not until I got married, I truly understood the value of those conversations. My mom has always been a modern cook whereas my mother in law is a traditional one, my understanding of traditional food and its modern interpretation stems from these two fabulous ladies in my life.

My food philosophy is quite simple- wholesome and flavorful food and spice plays an important role in creating that food.

Let's Eat

What led you to starting a food blog?
When I started I didn’t know what ‘blogging’ was. For me, it was an online journal so that I could share recipe links with my friends. I love talking about food, where it comes from, how it  should be cooked, how it affects our lives, how it is related to our past and my friends as I soon realized where not very keen on all that talking. The blog helped me talk to myself and save the pain for my friends I guess. Eventually, I found people online who were passionate about food as much as I’m. Today, Journey Kitchen is my creative outlet, from recipes to photography, it is my happy place.


What would you say “Journey Kitchen” is all about and please share a recipe that best describes your blog?
Journey Kitchen is a modern Indian cooking blog. But unlike what many think, modern cooking is not about moving away from the traditional roots instead it’s about going back to the traditional ingredients and cooking method and recreating them using latest techniques. Journey Kitchen is about food that has reassurance and comfort of the past but is also exciting enough to enjoy it today. It’s my humble attempt to change the way Indian food is perceived.  My husband’s love for traditional food and my love for modern make sure we always have great food and humorous arguments on the table which I often share on the blog.


Today’s recipe is inspired from a traditional sweet yogurt recipe from the city of Kolkatta called Mishti Doi (Mishti meaning sweet and doi meaning yogurt) , which my husband has childhood memories of. Mishti Doi is also called Lal doi meaning red yogurt due to it characteristic reddish color. It is made by caramelizing milk and then setting fresh yogurt in earthen pots. Considering I always have dulce de leche on hand, sweetening my hot chocolate and drizzle it over everything I bake, I figured it will work great for adding that caramelized flavor for Mishti doi.

Hot Cocoa

Dulce de leche is a Latin American spread, made by slowly converting the sugar in sweetened condensed milk until it caramelizes. After hours of cooking what you get is creamy, caramel flavored sweet milk, almost like a jam. I always make my own but you could easily use store bought.


Baked Dulce de leche Yogurt – Mishti Doi
Serves: 6-7


2 cups yogurt
1 can (395g)  dulce de leche
100 ml heavy cream
1/2 tsp rose water (optional)


Preheat the oven at 170 C. Whisk all the ingredients together for 2-3 minutes.

You can use individual ramekins or a large oven safe bowl to bake it. The baking time with differ according to what you use, but it generally ready when it’s thick and set in the middle. For the small ramekins I used, I baked them for only 15 minutes. Baking in larger bowl can take up to 30 -40 minutes. When I recently made it again, I thought of covering the ramekins with aluminum foil which helped in reducing the little drying you see at the edges when you bake in small ramekins.

Once baked, let it come to room temperature and chill for at least 5 hours before serving. Garnish with pecans.


  1. “Remember that Bengali households still are known for their amazing food culture and this fact is known world-wide :)

    we bengalis have won pretty much every award in the world stage
you name it we have it and we are damn proud of what we have :)

    MBA (IMT Ghaziabad)
    Bengaluru, Karnataka

  2. Love this post and absolutely love Mishti Doi!!Kulsum sure looks very very talented!Love the pics and the recipe!Its going to show up on our table very soon :)

  3. Neat photos, making my mouth water. Just a quick correction: State of Kolkatta does not exist. The name of the state is West Bengal, and the city is Kolkatta.

  4. This took me back home.. Mishti Doi.. I want some now!!
    I love Kulsum’s work .. the photography, the styling, the props ..the writing .. I can go on and on. Huge fan of this talented girl :)

  5. Love the pictures Kulsum, Mishti doi is my very fav and this one is different than what I make regularly. But Surely i will try this as soon as I can, Dulce de leche is my very fav and I am just drooling……..Thanks for sharing Prerna.

  6. Enjoyed reading your post, the photos that you have posted and also read about your pal. Its wonderful isn’t it to have a good pal to talk to anytime. You are blessed indeed.

  7. Kulsum, I am a big fan of yours!! And this recipe looks so perfect for dulce de leche lovers (me me!!!). Gorgeous photos as always. Prerna, thanks for bringing these lovely ladies to your blog, we are having fun :)