Thursday, December 21, 2017

Review: Vibrant India

Indian cuisine, with its emphasis on beans, lentils, and a wide variety of vegetables, lends itself naturally to vegetarian and vegan diets. Curries, daals, dishes with heavy sauce and don't forget the naan...

But wait! There's much more to Indian food than the well-known dishes from the northern part of the country (some of which weren't even invented in India!). Chitra Agrawal wants to introduce home chefs to the glorious, diverse cuisine of Southern India, which is similar in some ways to what we already know and love but different in many others. Southern Indian dishes tend to be much heavier on rice and lentils than northern meals. Spice mixtures are different. Dishes use tamarind instead of green mango. Even the chai is made differently.

Vibrant India pays homage to the food Agrawal grew up with in Bangalore, adapted slightly as necessary for cooks in America. The pages of this gorgeous cookbook are full of exciting new recipes that are just begging to be made: curries (such as Karnataka Coconut Vegetable Curry), salads (Cucumber, Sprouted Mung Bean, and Pomegranate Salad), rice (Fragrant Eggplant and Green Pepper Rice), stews (Black-Eyed Peas, Greens, and Lentil Stew), sweets (Banana, Coconut, and Cardamom Ice Cream), and more. At the end, readers will find a chapter on DIY spice blends, and there are even instructions for making your own chutneys and pickles.

Scattered throughout the recipes are gorgeous (and delicious!) color photographs of some of the dishes, as well as artwork featuring animals and Indian motifs. Agrawal includes fun tidbits of family history, to help readers feel immersed in Indian culture and cuisine. Don't feel intimidated by the recipes; most look much more complex than they actually are, and once you've tried a few recipes, the methods and ingredient lists won't look nearly as daunting.

Vibrant India is a great cookbook for vegetarians, vegans, and omnivores alike. Get ready to try something new!


I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review. The opinions expressed within are completely my own.

No comments:

Post a Comment