When it arrived, it was in a box all its own. When I took it out of the box, I found it was covered in a lovely, dark-blueish, purple. At that point, I was afraid to touch it. when one does touch, it is big and has a tri-fold cover. So it needs a big space to really look at the book. Yes, it has lots of recipes and stunning photos by Ashima Narain. Since the book is a such a "coffee table" experience, the published added a small, plain booklet of recipes, a kitchen copy to preserve the integrity of the book while making cooking from its pages a bit easier.
To give you an idea of the lavish entertaining in the book, you will find photos like this one.of Hyderabad, and her daughter are beside a small 108-foot teak table. The table will seat you and 100 friends for dinner. Alas, the palace is now a hotel. Despite its lavishness, the book features solid Indian recipes that anyone with the right spices could cook, even if your table only seats four.
Minced meat with capsicum
Chicken mince (keema) 1 kg/2.2 lbCapsicum (Shimla mirch), chopped 4Ghee/Refined oil 2¼ cups/250 gm/9 ozOnions, medium-sized, sliced 4Ginger (adrak) paste ½ tsp / 3 gmGarlic (lasan) paste ½ tsp/3 gmGarlic pods, finely chopped 200 gm/7 ozGreen chillies, ground to paste 6Green coriander (hara dhaniya), chopped 1 bunchMint (pudina), chopped 1 bunchJuice of lemon (nimbu) 1
• Heat the ghee or oil in a wok (kadhai); add half the sliced onions and capsicum, fry till it turns yellow (not pink or brown).• Add the minced meat, salt, ginger and garlic pastes; mix and fry for a few minutes.• Add the chopped garlic, green chilli paste, green coriander, and mint. Pour some water and cook till the meat is soft.• Then add the remaining sliced onions and capsicum; cook till the mixture is dry.• Add the lemon juice, mix (not cook) and serve.
While this might not be the one book you need on Indian cooking, it is certainly a book for a cook that has ever been mesmerized by India.