Haven't had much time or mindspace for cooking lately, with Puddi's illness and hospitalisation. But she's fine now, back to being the family dog ( i.e. begging for scraps off everyone's plate, no matter what they're eating!) and her usual zany self. I celebrated her return home by brewing up a pea soup with spinach greens sauteed with garlic, but haven't done much else.
But I came across this interesting book which I started reading while nursing Puddi in hospital. It's by an Indian food writer settled in the US ( Chitrita Banerji) who specialises in Bengali food but was on a self-imposed quest to find out more about the origins of the different styles of cooking in India. Her chapter on Bengali food, especially that served at weddings made me slurp deliriously, even though I'm vegetarian. I of course immediately turned to the chapter on Karnataka food which I admit was a bit of a let-down because it hardly mentioned the varied types of cuisine and was not informed or knowledgeable enough, in my opinion.
Sadly, the book mysteriously vanished after I had completed these two chapters and I could neither find it in the hospital room or at home so I assume it's vapourised into that great library in the sky. I'll have to buy myself a new copy because I found the little that I dipped into quite intriguing...
Finally found it in a mixed bag at home and finished it. I found it a little disappointing, to be honest, because while the quality of writing is good and the descriptions evocative, the author has a tendency to relate everything back to Bengali cooking, which really was not the point. Even when she goes to have Karnataka cuisine in Bangalore, she spends more time marveling at a Bengali sweet shop which has been there for a while. It was an interesting one time read but certainly not a re-reading type of book. for that, I prefer Madhur Jaffrey's Tastes of India, where she covers different regions in great detail, telling us about their cooking, the evolution of those styles and then shares recipes from people who are from those regions, so that they are authentic.