Cookbooks we love right now

We’ve rounded up the latest cookbooks to get your teeth into this season

25 Aug 2021

The Covid-19 pandemic has made most of us continue working from home. As a result, more and more food lovers are pouring their pandemic solace into cooking and baking even now. And while we still can’t travel to far off locales with restrictions still in place, why not try your hand at making dishes from cuisines from other regions? With home cooking becoming an essential part of our daily routine, it’s best to read cookbooks which offer heaps of fantastically fresh recipes that span the globe and can boost our culinary skills. So whether you fancy learning some new regional cuisine or want to ace baking skills, these are the best cookbooks we’d recommend adding to your kitchen shelf in 2021.

The Andhra Cookbook, Komala Sista Rao

The Andhra Cookbook presents a compilation of delectable vegetarian Andhra recipes of the Rao family’s culinary treasury. Interestingly, Komala Sista Rao is a former singer and mother of pop singer and stage actress Suneeta Rao. Backed by excellent food photography, the cookbook consists of an array of vegetable curries, dals, stews and chutneys from the region. Rao has given detailed explanations about the preparation methods and suggested menus in order to understand how to combine dishes.

Kunal Kapur in the Kitchen, Chef Kunal Kapur

From his childhood memories redolent with the aromas from his grandfather’s kitchen to dining table conversations, the cookbook is replete with dishes like ham and cheese bread pakora, caramelised onion paratha, blueberry and mint lassi, and mishti doi with sesame crisps, among other traditional dishes, but with a fresh twist. The cookbook is a nostalgia trip for a boy from a big Punjabi family comprising 15 complete meals that are popular yet unique.

Everyday Superfoods, Dr Nandita Iyer

From millets in Karnataka to amaranth in Himachal Pradesh, turmeric in Salem, to tea in Darjeeling, this cookbook is a definitive guide on how one can introduce 39 superfoods from Indian kitchens to one’s diet through simple recipes. It is a book about nutrition, antioxidants and immunity filled with information and well-researched facts by author and nutritionist Dr Nandita Iyer, for whom superfoods are like our superheroes.

New-School Sweets: Old-School Pastries with an Insanely Delicious Twist, Vinesh Johny and Andres Lara

Pastry chef Vinesh Johny, co-founder of the Bengaluru-based Lavonne Academy of Baking Science and Pastry Arts, and Andres Lara, a Colombian chef based in the US, have come out with a dessert cookbook that has lots of modern techniques for traditional bakes. The recipes in the cookbook are based on their years of experience and understanding of ingredients. There are even recipes inspired by their travels, such as Taiwanese pineapple tart, cheesecake pie, saffron brioche and a Tahini banana loaf. The chefs have given clear instructions for each dessert preceded by an interesting note.

Spiced, Smoked, Pickled, Preserved: Recipes and Reminiscences from India’s Eastern Hills by Indranee Ghosh

In this memoir, Ghosh brings together interesting vignettes from her youth in the densely forested Khasi Hills and in Bengal’s plains with a delectable selection of family recipes. For food lovers, the cookbook has a host of exciting dishes — from essential spice mixes to forgotten dishes reinvented over time, fermented delicacies, pan-roasted fishes, hearty fish stews and delicious pork in plum sauce, to name a few.

Have you read any of these cookbooks? Tell us in the comment section below.

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