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Indian Home Cooking cookbook (by Suvir Saran)


Jaymes
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Perusing the international cookbooks at my local Barnes & Noble today and what did I spy but the new cookbook by our own Suvir Saran, "Indian Home Cooking"! So of course I picked up a copy. It appears to be chock full of excellent and very approachable recipes, as well as Suvir's terrific notes and comments regarding his remembrances of each dish.

Although I couldn't resist bringing it home from the B&N, I did check to see if it's available on Amazon through the eGullet link. It is, of course, and ten bucks cheaper.

Congratulations, Suvir. Well done. I know you're proud and you should be.

:rolleyes:

Edited by Jaymes (log)

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Thanks for the info, Jaymes! I'll have to pick up a copy which is in truth both a good and bad thing. Good in that I'll get to try the book, but really bad in that Indian food is one of the few areas I can still get the SO to take me out to a restaurant rather than saying, oh you do ________ so much better. :shock::angry::wacko::laugh:

Barbara Laidlaw aka "Jake"

Good friends help you move, real friends help you move bodies.

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I have ordered my copy of this book.

Glad to read others have done same.

The cover is very nice looking. I have only seen its image on amazon, but it still looks very attractive. Somewhere on the net, one of the editorial reviews raved about the photography of the book. Then I saw the photographs in Methome Magazine. They make me proud to be Indian. The food is what I ate at home cooked by mother. But the pictures are very different from other Indian cookbook where food looks of India from my dadis generation. The photographer or stylist must have very good taste and passion for India. They give our food a very good look.

The magazine made me google Suvir Saran and I learned of his many contributions to Indian cooking. And about eGullet and this online community. Below is excerpt from the magazine story.

Methome Magazine (September 2004)

Veggie Table

Chef Suvir Saran has developed his own casual, modern style of Indian cuisine featuring a full complement of satisfying, flavorful vegetarian dishes.

"There is a revolution in Indian cuisine going on in America, and Suvir Saran is one of its leaders. The popular cooking teacher, a native of Delhi, learned traditional northern Indian cuisine from his family's Brahmin chef and then spent many years cooking and eating his way around the subcontinent, gradually incorporating the country's many regional styles into his own dishes. Now he has adapted his vast repertoire of Indian recipes to an urban American lifestyle, making them more accessible and inspiring to home cooks."

Jaymes, did you read the magazine, does the book have similar recipes and photos? I want my girl friend to see the book and have the same reaction she had to the magazine. She looked at me and said if Indian food can be served this way, it can become mainstream.

Can that be the case? I am not sure an entire cookbook could look as enticing as the photos in the magazine, but I know there are books out there, not Indian or Chinese or Thai or Italian, that can make food look good. But as an Indian, I am resigned to not having our food look the same way.

What is your impression?

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Ok, I have the book.

Better than I thought it could be. I was nervous Methome Magazine raised my expectation too high. But book is better than magazine, in design and look. Colors are amazing, recipes simple home food and photographs are just from a post card, so nice.

I mistakenly write review on other conversation here. Below is link.

http://forums.egullet.org/index.php?showtopic=47309&st=30&

I will cook more and write later. I ordered two books. Busy weekend I think ahead.

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Fantastic! And that too would be less said. Finally an Indian cook book that is so beautiful, printed by a leading American publisher and with of the minute design and photographs.

We cooked a big meal for just my gf and I.

Cooked more than we should have, but with this book, it will be something easy to do.

The back cover of the book quotes Mark Bittman, a fan of Suvir Saran, and a man greatly admired by Monica Bhide and many others who love good and honest food as saying "This is one of the most interesting and accessible Indian cookbooks ever written. Suvir's food is fresh, delicious, authentic, and straightforward, and the input of veteran Stephanie Lyness virtually guarantees recipes that will work for home cooks, even those who've never attempted Indian before."

My own favorite food person, my Middle Eastern food favorite, Paula Wolfert, says: "I really like this book - a fine collection of light, vibrant, fresh, and easy-to-make authentic Indian home cooking. The resulting flavors are complex and sophisticated without being fussy or difficult. The writing is friendly, the instructions are practical, and the food is exciting. Bravo!"

And then to top it all of, the author of one of my most trusted cookbooks on the foods of Emilia Romagna, Lynne Rosetto Kasper says: "For pure, unadulterated pleasure, just try Suvir Saran's food. It is the stuff of midnight yearnings. Never has indian food tasted this fresh, this exciting, and rarely has it been this easy to do. He is as generous a teacher on the page as he is in person. if you've ever considered an Indian cookbook, this is the one. It will be happily stained and dog-eared within weeks."

But if this unmatched praise for a first work were not enough, the back cover has others praising just as high if not even more grandly. My gf tells me it is far from common for a first time writer to have such respect and admiration from those that will be their peer in the future. Clearly Suvir has earned praise in the world of food and writing that maybe people in his genre will never be able to get.

One of my gfs favorite TV Show has been Queer eye for straight guy. I find it somewhat challenging of my style. But it is funny and the men are very brilliant at how t hey changed the people they work on. Maybe secretly I wish our home, closet and kitchen could find their touch. And so jealousy makes me distracted. Ted Allen, the food guy says: "You have GOT to cook this book! Much as Rick Bayless opened people's eyes years ago to the underappreciated wonders of Mexican cooking, Suvir Saran and Stephanie Lyness are poised to do the same for the rich and fascinating cuisine of India. Not only does this volume reveal the mysteries of this vibrant food in an exciting and affectionate voice, it makes it attainable to the home cook--and that makes this book a triumph." Is the comparison to Rick Bayless a sign that Indian food is coming of age, or that Suvir will soon become a man of more millions?

A chef I had never heard of, but had to google as I found him mentioned in the book and then on Suvirs site, Art Smith (private chef to Oprah Winfrey), has made an even more eloquent assessment of this book, saying: "Suvir Saran speaks the language of the home cook, yet his food rivals that of top chefs everywhere. His recipes demystify this world-class cuisine, bringing its irresistible home cooking to our kitchens. Food and its meaning are universal. To see the common thread, we have only to open our mouths, and our minds. Guided by Suvir, we can do both."

One of the chefs whom I have never understood, but people tell me has a big following, Roseann Gold, says: "If you crave the flavors of Indian cuisine and long to recreate them at home, then buy this book! With warmth, charm, and formidable expertise, Suvir and Stephanie beckon you into their kitchen and teach your tastebuds to dance."

Each authority that reviewed the book has said something very different. My gf says they have said what they feel because she cannot sense the same language coming across in each. Never thought of it this way. And now, after reading several back covers, I realize how many books have one person writing quotes and people just allow author to use their name. Must have been difficult to get such many big people to find time to review the book. It does make sense. As I mentioned to Monica on another correspondence, Indian food is now being looked at as a growing food. And this book and her own efforts will change how people think of our counrties food.

My gf is smitten by him. I guess I should message him here to let him know he has people in love with his food for sure, but also his style. She believes this book could not be so beautiful if it were not for some personal sense of taste that Suvir has been born with. I doubted that and said maybe it is easy to buy a team. She did some google searches and found out he is a designer and retailer and so is now convinced he is his works own artistic director. Could that be the case? Will publishers allow authors such power? Is it smart? Or are exceptions made when talent is apparent? Who decides if talent is good and substantial? Why can we all not find such believers? But all men are not really created same.

Suvir, will you be traveling with this book? How many cities? What cities? Will you teach classes when you visit other cities? How can one enroll?

We are waiting for Flan from the book to cool down. We made it, again, simple recipe. My fingers are crossed that it works. Will let you know. GF and I are having fights about who gets to read it tonight at bed.

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Banana Pudding was made for dessert this weekend.

My gf's family said it was better banana pudding than they had grown up eating. Grandma would have found it superior is what mother said.

Dinner was pea samosas (thank heaven for recipe that makes this easy) as appetizer with pakoras (better than mom's, Suvier has a way with making things simple and better I think). The pakoras were so crisp and delicate, more like tempura and the batter was light and the veggies amazing. A recipe I told mom I will share with her.

Dinner was lamb-orange biryaani, I never knew orange was used in Indian cooking. mom says it is and a vegetable of the rich. We grew up in modest middle class homes. The biryaani will convert just about anyone into Indian cooking. It was amazingly perfumed, without smelling of artificial flower type smell most Indian biryaanis have which we like but non-indian find abhorrent for the most part. I have plenty non-indian friends that love the rose water and kewra though.

Mushroom recipe from Srinagar club was just out of this world. We ate it all and hoped we had made double batch. It is a recipe that will become a all time favorite for in-laws.

Matar Paneer was like moms. Thin sauce, runny and spicy and delicate. Finally a home style recipe for a home dish. Thanks Suvir. I hope I can discuss this with you. Why do so many cookbook writers and other authors not use home recipes for dishes like this? Can you please share with us? Are home style recipes more difficult to document? Less famous? trendy? Please do tell us what you think about this. Sad that yours is first book which makes effort to try sharing simple version of this famous dish.

Cumin aloo (jeera aloo) were simple and superb and easy to make. Will make them for brunch often now that I realize jeera aloo does not need tomato sauce. Another thing all cookbooks do differently from home chefs.

Today gf will make dinner from book. I shall let you all know.

Suvir, what are some of your favorite recipes from the book? Can you share a list of one or two dishes from each chapter. Please.

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I've been waiting for Suvir's book for a long time. Can't wait to place my order.

Thanks for the reminder. Every recipe I've tried from Suvir is a winner. :wub:

He's a real magician with spices. :biggrin:

Congratulations, Suvir.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detai...=books&n=507846

Click above to buy the book at good price. It is better price then you will find at barnes and noble.

Yes, he truly is magician. Unlike any cookbook, this one will change how we think of Indian cooking. BettyK, please share with us what you think. Suvir seems too busy to comment on this site, but I have enjoyed reading his old comments. Seems like this indian page seemed to have been inspired and informed by him. And I feel lukcy that he has given us this place to learn from him and share our own family stuff.

When you see the book, you will call him magician with food and photo. Indian food looks world class now and Indians can be so proud. It is lucky he shares with us, through this site and his book.

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Congratulations Suvir and Stephanie.

I am enjoying it thoroughly and do not understand where and when to stop getting inspired.

Suvir will be finding his name occasionally on my weekly specials. I hope he doesn't mind.

I was looking at the beautiful picture of Matar Kee Patty and my mouth watered. Which brand did you buy for the puff pastry. I would love to fill in various fiilings.

You must be very busy promoting the book and with all the calls you must be recieving. Or are you too busy with your new venture for making of the new Restaurant of the year along with Per Se.

Good Luck Suvir:

Prasad

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suvir has been kind enough to mail me a copy of his book--it should arrive soon. i understand many of the recipes he'd shared with us in the past are included, along with many new ones. i look forward to trying them all.

i should say that my understanding is that suvir no longer visits egullet (or only extremely rarely) and congratulations/felicitations sent to him here are unlikely to be received. a better avenue for that might be the contact information on suvir.com

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I am and have been a huge fan of Biriyaanis. I thought I was pretty good in making one.

Past Sunday I tried Suvir's recipe for Biriyaani for my Sunday Brunch. It was simple to prepare and tasted excellent. I would have never thought of adding orange zest. It was very well recieved by my Sunday fan's of the brunch. I had made it with Baby Goat. :rolleyes:

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I am and have been a huge fan of Biriyaanis. I thought I was pretty good in making one.

Past Sunday I tried Suvir's recipe for Biriyaani for my Sunday Brunch. It was simple to prepare and tasted excellent. I would have never thought of adding orange zest. It was very well recieved by my Sunday fan's of the brunch. I had made it with Baby Goat. :rolleyes:

What kind of orange you use Prasad? what you think? We were very surprised by how subtle and fragrant the biryaani was. And most good was that it was not like rose or kevra smelling that can be turn off for so many people. It was fragrant but without being too much like perfume of flowers.

What did you serve it with for your brunch?

Did you try any other recipe?

Will cook more from it coming weekend. Will share comments here.

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Tonight I'm trying my first foray into Indian cooking. I'm making the Summer Squash. My family loves squash, and I'm excited about this dish. I've decided not to tackle several recipes at once, but am going to attempt to make one each day. Or at least every other day.

Suvir, I own several Indian cookbooks, but sad to say, have not cooked from them. Your book seems so accessible. I, too, would like a list of one or two from each chapter which are particularly recommended for newcomers to Indian cuisine.

Thank you, foodietravler, for letting us know which ones you've been successful with. Anyone else cooking from the book?

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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Tonight I'm trying my first foray into Indian cooking.  I'm making the Summer Squash.  My family loves squash, and I'm excited about this dish.  I've decided not to tackle several recipes at once, but am going to attempt to make one each day.  Or at least every other day.

Suvir, I own several Indian cookbooks, but sad to say, have not cooked from them.  Your book seems so accessible.  I, too, would like a list of one or two from each chapter which are particularly recommended for newcomers to Indian cuisine.

Thank you, foodietravler, for letting us know which ones you've been successful with.  Anyone else cooking from the book?

Wish you best luck in cooking. You make Indian food before? What dishes you liked before?

Summer Squash is dish that they feature in India Abroad, famous Indian paper in America.

If you want, try making orange and lamb biryani. You can make it with beef if you worry lamb is not your taste. Nice recipe and people like it.

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What kind of orange you use Prasad? what you think? We were very surprised by how subtle and fragrant the biryaani was. And most good was that it was not like rose or kevra smelling that can be turn off for so many people. It was fragrant but without being too much like perfume of flowers.

What did you serve it with for your brunch?

Did you try any other recipe?

Will cook more from it coming weekend. Will share comments here.

I used California Navels: These large, thick-skinned oranges are easily identified by the "belly-button" found at their blossom end. Navels are seedless, almost effortlessly peeled, and easily segmented--qualities that, along with their sweet flavor, make them excellent eating oranges. California navels are somewhat more flavorful than those grown in Florida.

Served with boondi, mint raita and there is plenty to pick more from the brunch on the buffet, especially mirchi ka salan or bagare baigan.

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Reporting back on the Summer Squash recipe on page 85.

I did make it. Our family eats a lot of squash and I was really looking forward to trying this. Suvir says in the introduction, "Even in the dead of winter, cooking this dish brings summer into my home." And that's a very apt description of the beautiful bright summer colors simmering aromatically in the skillet.

The dish was easy to do, and very tasty. Exotic without being overwhelming (important since I'm cooking for my 80-something parents with sensitive tummies), the flavors combined with the slightly crunchy texture of the squash to make a truly delicious side dish.

We loved it, and will make it often. And I'm looking for the next thing to try from this wonderful book.

:rolleyes:

And PS - Suvir. I see that you are still listed as a member. If you do read here from time to time, hope you see how many people are enjoying your efforts.

I don't understand why rappers have to hunch over while they stomp around the stage hollering.  It hurts my back to watch them. On the other hand, I've been thinking that perhaps I should start a rap group here at the Old Folks' Home.  Most of us already walk like that.

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I was invited to a tasting at Suvir's new restaurant yesterday. The food was delicious and the decor is very beautiful. Service was excellent and the host was of course most gracious. Suvir was kind enough to give me a copy of his book. The pictures are stunning. I haven’t had a chance to try any of his recipes yet, I look forward to trying them soon. Congratulations Suvir!

Ammini

Ammini Ramachandran

www.Peppertrail.com

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http://www.usatoday.com/life/books/news/20...POE=click-refer

Suvir Saran and his cook book make it to USA Today list of seasons best cookbooks.

Indian Home Cooking is one of 6 great book of the year.

Other books are , The Best American Recipes (Fran McCullough and Molly Stevens), Barefoot in Paris (Ina Garten), The Gourmet Cookbook (Ruth Reichl), Dessert University (Roland Mesnier), Fast Food My Way (Jacques Pepin).

Congratulations Suvir!

Your book will be big success. Your book and you are all over. Nice to be seeing Indian food and chef get so much acclaim and recognision. Thank you for sharing so much here on web also.

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Hello all:

I just picked up my copy of Suvir Saran's Indian Home Cooking . It's quite simply, amazing. And apparantly USAToday agrees; they have chosen it as one of the top six cookbooks of the season. Here's the link:

http://www.usatoday.com/life/books/news/20...cookbooks_x.htm

Tonight I made Suvir's recipes for pineapple rasam and party cauliflower. Both recipes were easy to make, and wonderfully flavored. I cannot wait to try out more recipes. Has anyone else been using it? What are your favorite recipes so far?

Matthew In Minnesota

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yesterday, I had the great pleasure to spend the entire afternoon with Suvir Saran at the Williams-Sonoma store on Union Square in San Francisco. He is out on a book tour with his wonderful new cookbook. He was on the Gene Burns show yesterday, followed by Ruth Reichl, who is going to do some kind of a piece on the cookbook.

It was an utter joy to finally meet my friend, whom I've known online for over a year now--I had been to Amma three times prior to his departure, and each time, an emergency dictated his absence. Even more wonderful to witness the transformation on the faces of people who came over to taste the soup he was serving, Tomato Rasam, all afternoon. Young and old, male and female, of every ethnicity and background: no one left the room grumpy. The soup, which he replenished all afternoon, easily, served dozens and dozens of people, and they were so delighted. The staff also returned again and again, and said, "This is the best this store has ever smelled."

For the contingent of Suvir's fans here, on the India board and beyond, he realized he had forgotten to let people know he was coming out, as it was a bit of a whirlwind tour. He will return in November, and you will receive notice then.

As for me, I came home with an inscribed cookbook, and I feel as though I were in the presence of a very gifted and special person. His generosity was astonishing: he literally told people, "If you buy my book and encounter any problems, you can e-mail me or call me on my cell. But I think you will have no problems." Imagine that, from any author.

He just amazes me. He is a beautiful soul, with such integrity.

Best of all, I will be traveling this month or next to NYC, as Suvir has requested that I help with the Dévi web site design and photography. Ya, you betcha! "Will work for Chaat"!

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