About

Welcome to Surreyfarms. A serene haven in the Los Gatos Foothills in Northern California.

My name is Kalpana and I want to share with you my passion for everything beautiful. Nature, beautiful flowers, gardening, cooking, wonderful books, celebrating festivals, meeting with friends and family, and anything that brings joy and happiness.

Vegetarian since birth

I was raised vegetarian and my family and extended family have been vegetarians for generations. It has been a way of life for us, not a new fad or diet.

What you will find here are a variety of healthy vegetarian recipes chock full of good for you vegetables and legumes.

A lot of my recipes come from my family constantly asking me to experiment with fun and exciting vegetarian recipes. I find inspiration for my cooking from all kinds of places, my Mom, Mom-in-law, Aunts, friends, magazines, restaurants, and cooking shows.  

My blog is not vegan, I do have recipes with eggs, milk, cheese, and yogurt.  What my blog does not have are any meat-based recipes.What I have here are an eclectic collection of vegetarian recipes that are easy to make, healthy, and delicious.

I do eat eggs and dairy. I don’t smoke. I don’t drink often, just a glass or two of wine on the weekend. I don’t eat out much, I am a picky restaurant person. I drink soda only once in a few months, and I don’t drink fruit juice of any kind. I love water and drink water all day long. I have a sweet tooth and love good desserts but only indulge once in a while.

I love bread but eat it a toast or two in a week, because lets face it we all love sugar, bread, and butter. I try to eat all these in moderation to maintain a healthy weight. Yet it is a constant awareness to eat healthy and exercise that keeps me constantly looking out for tasty vegetarian recipes that are healthy and satisfying.

I love photography

My blog has lots of pictures of my garden, of places I have visited, and of gatherings and celebrations with friends and family.

I especially love taking photos of people at intimate teas and lunches, with everyone having a good time over delicious food.

I love California

I love California where I live now with husband and three girls. I grew up in Texas and moved to Silicon Valley after my husband and I graduated from UT Austin and got jobs here in the Bay Area. We always thought we’d move back to Texas. But California seeps into your bones and doesn’t let go. It’s like the song by the Eagles – Welcome to the Hotel California,

Welcome to the Hotel California
Such a lovely place (Such a lovely place)
Such a lovely face
Plenty of room at the Hotel California
Any time of year (Any time of year)
You can find it here.

Last thing I remember, I was
Running for the door
I had to find the passage back
To the place I was before
“Relax, ” said the night man,
You can check-out any time you like,
But you can never leave! “

What I love about California foremost is the fabulous weather all year round. Cool temperatures in the 60s in the morning, warmer in the daytime to 70s, 80s and even 90s, and cooling down into the 50s and 60s at night. This weather is amazing to grow an abundance of fruits and vegetables and flowers and fauna. It’s the weather here that’s just phenomenal.

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Nature is beautiful and in abundance here. Mountains and hills, clean air, clear blue skies, cool Pacific Ocean, wine country, snow capped Sierra, dry of the dessert, the foggy coastal cities and the majestic green of the Redwood forest. You can find everything in this beautiful state.

I also love the multicultural aspect of this area making it a great place to meet people from all over the world, and a great place to try foods from all over the world too. Hence I do have an entire section dedicated to our beloved California and all that it has to offer. Check it out for off the beaten path finds, fun places to visit, and out of the ordinary sites to see.

Gardening is my passion.

 I’m no master gardener but I enjoy passing on what knowledge I’ve gained from home gardening for over 20 years.  

Healthier, happier, and peaceful life.

I hope you enjoy these recipes, photos and stories, maybe they will encourage you to try something new, visit an exotic destination, and maybe host your own small gathering. One thing I’ve learnt is that even just a “Come on over for tea.” seems special with people whose company you enjoy.

Why I Chose Surreyfarms as the name for my blog: 

The neighborhood I live in is a beautiful patch of heaven, with charming cottages and gorgeous homes that dot the hills around, with hiking trails and roads that have a rural feel. Truly a beautiful area. The surrounding neighborhood used to be Surreyfarms before it got parceled off into various lots for new housing.

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When I am writing this area brings happy images of the beautiful nature here and puts me in a good mood to share some positive stories. I also love the name farm in Surreyfarms– don’t you?  When I think of farm, I think of cows and chickens roaming free, vast fields of veggies, fruit trees, lots of sunshine, clean fresh air, and healthy living. I know it’s a romantic idea, but that’s what farm means to me.  Welcome to Surreyfarms.net

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Welcome to Surreyfarms. A happy state of mind.  With love, Kalpana

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27 thoughts on “About”

  1. What a stunning introduction to your blog! Your photos are brimming with colour and I’m sure to enjoy following you here. What brought me here was a link to your Tomato Soup! 😋

    1. Oh wow, to find me via my tomato soup is insane!! especially as there are so many recipes out there LOL. I am so excited you have joined my blog! I so hope you enjoy what you read. I do love color, lots of it ❤️💙💚🧡💛💜🖤🤎😁😁😁 Thank you so much for your lovely comment, have a wonderful weekend 😊

  2. I was browsing through your blogs yday .. when I am confused with what to make for lunch/dinner I go to your blog and check out 🙂

  3. I made the delicious salted caramel brownies that you blogged about Kalpana (which I believe was also Rose’s recipe maybe?). Huge hit with the family!

    Your recipes are always delicious, easy to follow and make. I love trying them and making them. Thank you both so much, as your blog and recipes bring so much joy to others.

    Lots of love to you and your families.

    Shashi

  4. I love your blog, because I love Northern California and you do a great job! I was born and raised in the San Joaquin Valley (that no one in the east can pronounce). I can smell the freshness of the ocean and coolness or the scalding heat of the dry climate in the hills. You can see the sky. It is so beautiful. I have to say, when I see your pictures my heart aches with homesickness. Then I must turn to one of your delicious recipes for comfort! or make another plan to visit my family 🙂

  5. Your blog is AH-MAZING!! Please don’t stop. It’s all the things I love. Food, gardening, people, community. I have been loving your posts. It inspires me.

  6. Your writing is wonderful! So descriptive and your photos are spot on and so enticing!! You can almost compile it as a book. You have such a talent – your blog will act as a lifestyle archive. How lucky is your family!👍🏼😊🥰

  7. I’ve really been enjoying your blog and the gorgeous photos of flowers, pictures from your travels, your book suggestions and all of your great recipes. I’ve downloaded and tried several of them, especially the soups. You are such a talented photographer and writer. Thanks for producing such a great blog.

    Cheers!
    Geri

    1. Hello Kalpana! Welcome to my blog. I hope you enjoy the many recipes and stories I publish. Hope to see you in the likes and comments section 😊. Have a wonderful day.

  8. Your blog is my travel guide
    Cook book
    Movie guide
    Book guide
    And general knowledge guide🙏

    It is one of our favorite pass time sites.

    I have it all in one place. So I go there and read your old posts too when I have time.

    Thank you
    You are very talented!

  9. Best Wishes Dolly . Enjoy your Special Day . we all love your daily doses of Wisdom on Gardening , Innovative Culinary Dishes and Book Reads etc. Most importantly , you have an innate Eye for all things Bright and Beautiful and your Sharp Camera Eye posts the most amazing photos on your Blog . A Visual Treat Supremo. Have a wonderful day – hope Hitesh and the girls will shower you with gifts and make this a Xmas in July ….. Vinatha Mami

  10. Hello, I had a thought, then chatted to my sister Sonnie, and between us we suggest a combination of potato, white turnip and cauliflower for the jeruselum artichoke soup. I hope that helps. I hope that you enjoy the soup, it is delicious. I will also try it with these three ingredients. I love your blog. Thank you.

  11. Dolly,

    I have been reading your very interesting blogs. The photographs are marvellous. My niece, Geetha, is, I think, also hooked on to Surreyfarms. Result- you, Sridevi, Anjali and Rani, better be prepared to demonstrate your culinary skills when we land up there in Los Gatos in June. One special dish, each day!

    Your Dad was here in Mumbai and spent 10 days with us. My brother, Krish, who lives in Chennai, was also on a visit and gave your Dad company when I had to be away in my office. They got along famously.

    Incidentally, I am still working. This time, I am on vacation in June-July in the UK and USA. All these years, I have been travelling to the US on fleeting business trips, for conferences, etc., in Florida, New York, Philly, and so on. So, I am looking forward to this break, and to meeting all of you. Anjali and Rani were babies when I was last there on the west coast. From the photographs, I see them all tall and grown up. I look forward to seeing them again.

    So, take care, and see you all soon. My regards to Hitesh.
    Love to all,
    Chary Uncle

  12. Did your daughter tell you I’ve been making your recipes? I love reading your blog. I’m really into your soups and I love your Sunday soup tradition. My latest however was your orange tea cake. So yummy. I actually made one for my aunt for her birthday.

  13. Wow, thank you! I just accepted your invitation – what a beautiful blog you have replete with stunning photography and recipes. Thank you for adding me to your followers!

    Love it! What you have is so appealing to begin with. I’m so impressed with your talent, but not surprised.

  14. Hi Kalpana, how are you doing? It is always so nice to see interesting posts on your blog. You seem all fired up with your writing this year. Great to see that 2017 is going so well. I was behind in reading, but am catching up. I always learn something from your articles. Hope things are going well with you and the girls.

    Will look forward to read many more articles written by you. You put everything so well together that any topic you write on will be appealing.

    Roli

  15. Btw, I love reading your blogs. You write very well and its always so informational!

    Regards,
    Babita

  16. I read all your incredible, well written posts accompanied by the the most captivating photos!

    Kalpana, I enjoyed reading every blog over and over again.

    You are indeed an awesome writer and a great photographer. Thanks for sharing and increasing our knowledge in different subjects.

    Love, Devi

  17. Your blog is fantastic . Your write us are interesting , informative and well researched . The photos are incredibly amazing and make the Narratives lively . The subjects that you choose cover a wide range of subjects from Gardening to Fashion trends . Pl compile all this in a book format and publish . You can also include travelogues – countries you visited . Love , vinatha aunty

  18. Beautifully done…love the pics and contents. All the best in this…I know you will have a lot of beautiful things to share in the future and I can’t wait to read about it all!

  19. Awesome job, my dear friend/sis at heart!! I love that we now have a portal for all the goodness and beautiful things that you are! Thank you for indulging us with your time and talents. I am looking forward to your stories and happenings from Surrey farms!💝

  20. Congrats Kalpana! Beautifully done. You are a very talented person. Your home vibrates with your talent. Thanks for sharing this with us! We are eagerly waiting for your next posts.Keep posting. Love you!

  21. Way to go Dolly! Beautifully done. I love your ideas and talent. You have a green thumb and have created a beautiful garden that vibrates with colors and fragrances. Aptly named Surreyfarms, your place reminds me of the beautiful countryside of England with horse carriages and farms. Love you!

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