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By Syed Safa Chishti

Srinagar: With over 265k subscribers on YouTube and 84.4k followers on Instagram, 30 year old Tasiya Tariq unfolds how the inception of her YouTube channel, ‘Kashmir Food Fusion’ that conceived in 2018, transformed her life completely. Hailing from Bata Malu, Mominabad, Tasiya attained her early education from Presentation Convent School and later finished her Masters in English Literature. Her channel Kashmir Food Fusion shot to fame when her very few first uploaded videos of her reviving the traditional Kashmiri dishes became a huge success. Since then, there was no stopping in Tasiya’s path.

“I remember I was earnestly looking for some authentic recipes for Wazwan Pulao online. Like everyone else, I too believed that in current scenario everything, including every recipe is found on the internet like Google, YouTube etc., but to my surprise I could not find the authentic Wazwan Pulao recipe anywhere. That’s how me and my husband decided to start with a channel and established to teach some authentic recipes to people that can reflect our real culture and wouldn’t misguide audiences by uploading anything in the name of Kashmiri food”, said Tasiya.

Tasiya credits her success to her followers calling them as her biggest inspiration. She shares that many brides express their gratitude over how fearlessly they follow her recipes when they cook at their in-laws’ home. “People try my recipes and send their feedback regularly. I get overwhelmed seeing my inbox flooded with messages whenever a delay in uploading recipes occurs. They all encourage us. Many Kashmiri Pandits, students from hostels and brides called us their saviors for being able to prepare meal on their own without any hesitance”, Tasiya added.

Tasiya Tariq is the first Kashmiri woman to receive a Silver Play Button from YouTube. She recalls the incident as the biggest highlight of her journey, “It happened during covid-19 lockdown. It came to me as a huge surprise when the button reached to us all the way from USA. Our channel also got published in Oxford Economy Survey which became another of my biggest highlight since very few You Tubers from each state were selected. From J&K, our channel was chosen to represent our culture for the Oxford’s survey. We received recognition at the biggest level ever”.

Her favorite dishes to cook include Tabak Maaz, Methi Maaz and Wazwan Pulao which, Tasiya recalls had been the main source of motivation for starting the channel. She recommends beginners to start with simple cuisines like onion chicken curry.

Tasiya went on and said,  “Cooking is all about how you play with the ingredients. When you start cooking basic things, you can cook the rest. One must at the beginning have knowledge about how to use spices because what comes after that will be easier to take up and experiment with”.

She adds that some people expect fame and recognition to knock their doorstep overnight when that is not the case, “When we started out, we had to prepare so many recipes in a back to back chain. Gradually, with due course of time everything changed. I urge people to work efficiently and keep moving and motivating yourself”.

Tasiya suggests for everyone to aim higher and to work with dedication without giving up. “Hard work may not pay at the moment but when we keep our hopes high and work unconditionally, it gives us back more than what we started with” she said.