During my junior year of college, I lived in a 12-unit apartment building off-campus. The guys who rented the apartment immediately below mine grew up in India. The most amazing aromas of curry and cumin and turmeric greeted me whenever I entered our building. My house smells like that now as I’ve been trying a bunch of recipes from Rinku Bhattacharya’s book Spices & Seasons (affiliate link). It’s bringing back a lot of great memories.
My diet has changed rather dramatically recently, ever since I did Dr. Mark Hyman’s 10-Day Detox. I received my copy of Spices and Seasons while I was in the middle of the detox and I was afraid to glance through it because I assumed there would be a ton of recipes I couldn’t eat. When the detox ended and I finally looked through the book, I evaluated recipes by their lack of (1) sugar, (2) grains, (3) dairy and (4) legumes. I happily flagged more than a dozen recipes that fit into my new eating plan.
The CompostMaster and I have been trying so many recipes from this book, everything from the Essential Indian Chopped Salad to Salmon in a Tomato, Thyme and Ginger Sauce. Everything so far has been well-seasoned and mouth-watering, although I’ve made some minor modifications along the way. (The CompostMaster hates cilantro, for example, and there’s a lot of cilantro in the dishes.) Rinku’s Citrusy Roasted Beets with Toasted Spices are on tonight’s menu.
Thoughts about Spices and Seasons
Here are a few notes about the book in general:
- Rinku takes the intimidation factor out of Indian cooking. Her recipes and techniques are practical and simple.
- Rinku writes beautifully. You’ll read about her grandmother’s kitchen, how to create an essential spice kit and getting children to make healthy dining choices among other things.
- For the most part, the recipes make use of ingredients that are easy to find in U.S. grocery stores.
- Rinku is very conscious of today’s special dietary needs and even includes gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan indexes in the back of the book to complement the full-blown recipe index.
- The photographs in the book are bright and so colorful. Every single recipe has a full-page photo beside it.
- There isn’t any nutritional information provided, but the ingredients are sustainable and fresh and most recipes would fit into a diabetic-friendly diet.
I’ve thoroughly enjoyed cooking from Spices & Seasons. If learning to prepare simple Indian food intrigues you, check out Rinku’s blog, Spice Chronicles and go grab yourself a copy of her book. If you have an Instant Pot®, check out her latest book, Instant Indian (affiliate link), and take a look at her recipe for Whole Baked Cauliflower in Tomato Mint Sauce.
Disclaimer: I received a free review copy of Spices & Seasons by Rinku Bhattacharya. All opinions are my own.