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I have been looking to get an Indian food cookbook for a while because it's so delicious and that one caught my eye. It was at a hard to pass price and jumped on it. The idea of it being healthy recipe was also something I was looking for as like many the last year been hard... Recipes looks great and I am looking forward to try some. Just missing that healthy butter chicken recipe to get that 5 ⭐. 😉
My dad is from the south of India, but I've never been good at making Indian food. Alamelu Vairavan makes it so simple. Indian food can be really fatty because Indian cooks usually use a lot of oil. Alamelu uses much les oil in her recipes, which really reduces the calories, and keeps the dishes healthful. Now I can make some of my favorite south Indian vegetarian dishes at home. This is real home cooking, which is what I love. So many Indian cookbooks contain only restaurant recipes. Nothing beats home cooking in my opinion. The book also contains a section of meat recipes for omnivores, but most recipes are vegan or vegetarian. The vegetarian recipes that contain yogurt can easily be made vegan using either Kite Hill plain unsweetened almond milk yogurt or So Delicious unsweetened plain cultured coconut product. Here in the Detroit this product is available at Meijer super stores. The ghee (clarified butter) in recipes can be replaced with vegan buttery spread or other vegan margarine. For those concerned about fat in recipes containing shredded coconut, Ler's Do Organic makes a reduced fat organic shredded dried coconut that is available at health food stores or here on Amazon.com. Many recipes are gluten-free.
Disappointing. I love Alamelu's show, and I was really looking forward to her book.
Unfortunately, too many recipes are nearly identical: everything starts with curry leaves, mustard seeds, urad dal, onions, and tomatoes. Almost every single entree starts this way, and then you just throw in the special ingredient for that recipe.
Furthermore, the instructions do not have a lot of detail. Things like "cook the onions, then..." But how to cook the onions? How long? What should they look like?
She's also obsessed with using pre-made tomato sauce.... Why??? She's supposed to be about fresh, healthy cooking, and tons of her recipes list processed tomato sauce out of a can.
If you are an absolute beginner to making Indian food, then this might be a decent way to ease yourself into something very new. Otherwise, it's a wash.
I enjoy watching Alamelu on TV, I especially like her rice and veggie dishes. The lemon rice goes great with fish. This book has those recipes and more. If you make plain rice for your everyday meals, you can use any one of these recipes in place of that bc the recipes are really simple, like rice pilaf, Indian style, with assorted spices and other items added to the rice, making it a more interesting rice side dish for any meal, whether it's chops, steaks, chicken, fish, etc..I have made quite a few so far, one with mushrooms and one with chopped apples and chick peas, etc.. Made a few veggie sides too. And if you are new to Indian cuisine and your intent is to 'dabble' in it, but not to go overboard or be overwhelmed, this will satisfy that need. I like the veggie section too, lots of green beans, asparagus, carrots, cauliflower, etc...and there's no reason why you can't 'swap out' one veggie for another. There are protein recipes (chicken, lamb, fish, shellfish, etc., I made a fish recipe tonight), and desserts. I have never been very fond of Indian desserts, I must admit; but there are some in here if you are. For me, I like all the side dishes in this more than the main meals. I have more than a half dozen other books on this cuisine, but each book has something in it one can find useful.. All in all, a good, simple book on Indian cuisine, for vegetarians and meat eaters alike. Almost forgot, EVERY single recipe has a picture to illustrate it, I appreciate that too.
This cookbook is a great place to start learning to cook Indian food. I've made a few Indian dishes before, but the cookbook I had for years was a little intimidating & had a lot of ingredients that are hard to find where I live (plus it didn't use onions at all). This book simplifies things nicely. I still had to order serveral ingredients from Amazon because I live in a small town with very few Indian citizens, unfortunately I'll need to drive about 45 miles (each way) for a good Indian grocery for a few things I still need. I made my first 2 recipes from this book tonight & they were great. Hubby was in heaven! I was told to increase my fiber intake due to a medical condition, so I knew Indian cooking would do that. I remembered seeing Alamelu's cooking show on PBS, so I decided to look for one of her cookbooks. I'm very glad I did. I love Indian food & I plan to use this cookbook several times a week! Highly recommmend!
I love Indian food and have eaten it for about 45 years. But, I've been reluctant to attempt to cook it at home because it seemed to be complicated. I tried a few of Alamelu's recipes from her television show and she makes the combining of spices and ingredients so easy-to-understand and easy to do. I am very pleased with the results of the dishes I tried from the cookbook. If you don't have access to an Indian grocery store to buy the ingredients, Alamelu suggests substitutions that are readily available. Alamelu has a true knack for de-mystifying the secrets of Indian cooking and I have had delicious results!
Delicious and easy! Saw her show in tv randomly and tried one of the recipes in it and I was looking up her episodes to try more and then decided the book would be soo much easier. Very happy I found this cook and cookbook!
I am having so much fun with this book. The photos are so beautiful and the recipes are well explained and fairly easy to make. I had to buy some new spices but I am glad to do that. I definitely recommend this book.