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Dec 3, 2006 10:42 PM

Good Indian Cookbooks?

I'm looking to expand my home cooking library to include some books on Indian cooking, which I have never tried at home but love to eat. I'd love books that specialize in South Indian cooking but will happily consider anything recommend as authentic, well-written, and informative. Thanks in advance for your help!

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  1. Anything by either Madhur Jaffrey or Julie Sahni. Although it has no photos, I think Sahni's Classic Indian Cooking is--well--a classic. It's simply loaded with information and an excellent place to start for an introduction to Indian cuisine.

    1 Reply
    1. re: JoanN

      Exactly what I'd recommend, Sahni's Classic Indian and Jaffrey's World of Vegetarian Cooking.

    2. Second Madhur Jaffrey's books -- I've got one given to me by my mother that was published only in the UK but the ones on Amazon look promising.

      The hardest thing about Indian cooking is assembling the spices you'll need. Luckily in Boston we have plenty of markets where you can stock up. In fact, you can *have* some of my coriander seed and kasoori methi I bought when I was learning how to cook Indian .... some spices you have to buy in bulk and I'm never gonna get rid of them. I'll shoot you a few of my favorite recipes off board. Indian cooking is fun!

      1 Reply
      1. re: yumyum

        Thanks, you're a superstar yumyum!

      2. I don't recall the name, but the author is Padma Lakshi - used to have a show on the food network, basic, easy and tasty

        1. For nouvelle Indian cooking, check out Atul Kochhar's *Indian Essence: The Fresh Tastes of India's New Cuisine* and Vikram Vij's *Vij's*.

          Regional cookbooks are harder to come by. Penguin Books India has a whole series that's said to be excellent; I've only seen the curry book. If you can't find them in the States, you can probably order them online from the publisher.

          *The Essential Sindhi Cookbook* by Aroona Reejhsinghani (see
          *The Essential North-East Cookbook* by Hoihnu Hauzel (Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura with Chinese, Thai, Burmese and Bengali influences)

          *The Essential Goa Cookbook* by Maria Teresa Menezes

          *The Essential Kodava Cookbook* by C B Muthamma, P. Gangamma Bopanna (southern heartland)

          *Essential Delhi Cookbook* by Priti Narain

          *Essential Andhra Cookbook* by Bilkees Latif (Hyderibad and environs)

          *The Calcutta Cookbook* by Jaya Chaliha, Bunny Gupta, Meenakshi Das Gupta

          *Flavours of the Spice Coast* by K M Mathew (southwestern coast)

          *Curry, Curry, Curry* by Ranjit Rai

          *Southern Spice: Delicious Vegetarian Recipes from South India* by Chandra Padmanabhan

          You also might find it worth your while to check out the food forum at Another Subcontinent

          2 Replies
          1. re: carswell

            Wow, this is incredible - thank-you!!

            1. re: carswell

              Jaffrey has an Indian regional cookbook, but I need to look for the title when I get home.

              My fave Jaffrey book is one I got that has BOTH her Eastern vegetarian cookbook (recipes from all over Asia) and an Indian cookbook. It's almost as wide as it is tall and I got it a few years ago at, I think, the Strand in NYC. I'm sure Jaffrey's veggie cookbook (the one BEFORE her great in both size and content, World Vegetarian Cooking) is still available, but it's probable that all those recipes are in the newer, giant book as well.

              I loved the pan-Asian veggie book because that's where I first learned to make idlis, Korean mung bean pancakes, and Indian fritters, etc. This is important to me because they've become staple recipes I use all the time. A favorite meal is pakoras (with whatever vegs I have on hand) with a squash soup for dinner. Also Korean pancakes with bbq chicken thighs.

            2. I've really enjoyed cooking from "Mangoes and Curry Leaves" but it is not specifically a Southern Indian cookbook.