Guest Author - Preena Deepak
The flavors, colors and rich aroma of South Indian Cooking has transcended borders and invokes wide appeal both in North Indian States as well as abroad. Traditional South Indian dishes like idli, vada, chutney, sambar and others are loaded with nutrition besides adding a delightful change to the menu.
‘South Indian Recipes’ by Nita Mehta is a small cook book loaded with tasty South Indian treats. The book with its step by step instructions, colorful pictures and useful glossary is a must for novices who want to try their hand at South Indian cooking. That does not mean seasoned cooks, well versed in South Indian cooking can overlook this handy volume. There are refreshing changes and alternatives suggested for daily South Indian cooking.
I have been cooking most of the dishes mentioned in this book regularly for my family. Yet I ordered a copy of ‘South Indian Recipes’ to find other ways of preparing well known South Indian dishes. I am certainly not disappointed with my purchase. I found an easy recipe to make homemade sambar powder, interesting ideas of whipping up chutneys, alternative filling ideas for dosa , quick ways to make idli without fermentation, different combinations for vada, uppuma, Oothappam and rice dishes. The desert section with the three famous South Indian sweets also enticed me.
There are useful tips and a glossary section which makes the book ideal for first timers trying out South Indian dishes. The inviting pictures that accompany each recipe make it easy to follow instructions.
However, I did find the use of Hindi words for spices, vegetables and other ingredients a bit confusing. The English equivalents are mentioned in the list of things needed, but using Hindi words exclusively in the instructions makes it cumbersome for non Hindi readers like me.
On the whole I am glad I bought myself a copy of Nita Mehta’s ‘South Indian Recipes’ and would gladly recommend it as a good resource for anyone wanting to try their hand at South Indian Cooking.
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