Cholar Dal

Cholar Dal

Recipes for Cholar Dal almost always start off by alerting you that this is a dish for special occasions, served at Bengali weddings or other life events. Its simplicity, though, tempts one to break that hallowed tradition and label this a dal perfect for weeknight meals. In fact, that's exactly … [Read more...]

Brinjal Pulippu Kootu

Eggplant Kootu

I say brinjal, you say eggplant, and they say aubergine. Whatever. It's delicious, it's my favorite veggie, and today I have for you one of the most delicious ways you can cook it up and eat it: Brinjal Pulippu Kootu, a tangy dal you might never have eaten before unless you're a native of Tamil … [Read more...]

Onion Sambar | Vengaya Sambar

Onion Sambar

It's almost a given that you cannot go to a Tamil home without being invited to stay for a meal. Tamilians love to feed as much as they love to eat, and when we go to Chennai on our visits back to India it is not unusual for us to have two lunches, two dinners, and umpteen snacks, all in a single … [Read more...]

White Pumpkin Sambar

pooshnikai sambar 3

When you're married to a Tamilian as long as I have been, everyone pretty much considers you an honorary member of the club. But when it comes to my in-laws, nothing wins me more Tamil points than cooking up for them a fabulous south Indian meal that leaves them licking their fingers. Because … [Read more...]

Fat-Free Slow Cooker Dal

Fat-free dal

Winter makes me want to pull out the slow cooker and get something cooking. Because there's something warm and fuzzy and comforting about food cooked in a crockpot. And is there one good reason not to love food that cooks itself? My Fat Free Slow Cooker Dal requires just a little bit of prep, but … [Read more...]

Dhabay ki Daal

Dhabay ki Dal

Dhabas are north India's greasy spoons-- tiny roadside shacks that dot highways and mostly cater to weary truckers who pull in for a hearty, hot meal before heading over to the petrol pump (as gas stations are known in India) next door. Outside each dhaba are rows of charpoys, small Indian cots, … [Read more...]

Crispy Pongal Cakes With Sweet Potato Gotsu: Revitalizing a South Indian Classic

Pongal Cakes

I am too lazy easygoing to keep tabs on when Indian festivals come and go, but thanks to our families back home it is impossible for us to ever miss one. Every year, just before Diwali, my dad on the phone from Goa starts counting down for my benefit the days leading up to this mother of all … [Read more...]

Sweet Potato and Vaal Dal Curry

sweet potato curry

I am dropping out of oblivion for a quick moment to share an easy and delicious weeknight recipe: Sweet Potato and Vaal Dal Curry. Vaal is a beloved legume on India's west coast. A small bean that's more round than oval, it has a hard beige coat that is pretty much inedible, unlike the coats of … [Read more...]

Kholamba, a Low-Fat Vegetable Stew

kholamba

India's regional cuisines are so strikingly diverse that when resemblances and overlaps occur they inevitably make you wonder where the dish could have originated. There's never a simple answer. A long-running food argument in our home has been over the beginnings of what is perhaps Tamil Nadu's … [Read more...]