Want to make healthy, pizzazz-packed meals, but you're strapped for time? Look no further than this practical, innovative guide by Indian-American chef Ruta Kahate.

Even if you only have the most basic of kitchen skills, you can make Indian staples in around 30 minutes or less. Just stock your spice shelf with a few basic seasonings like cumin powder and curry leaves, and follow Kahate's straightforward, step-by-step instructions. Who knew making your own ghee and paneer was so simple?

The beet raita is a sweet, shockingly-hued, and deliciously creamy counterpoint to the robust, zingy one-minute chana, which, true to its name, is pleasingly quick and simple to assemble. The green pan-roasted chicken, seasoned with cinnamon and a kicking cilantro-based spice blend called green masala, leaves a pleasant, lingering heat on the tongue, and pairs well with the mouthwatering sautéed coconut chard. To cool your tastebuds, go for a sweet lassi—an Indian smoothie with yogurt and fruit, to which hand-ground cardamom seeds add an appealing astringency.

Recipes for ingredients that you can prep ahead of time and store in the fridge, like garlic paste, ginger paste, and green masala, add flavor and complexity while upping the dishes’ fresh factor. According to Kahate’s philosophy, “If it tastes good, it’ll get eaten.” If that’s the case, your leftovers won’t stick around very long.

By Renate Robertson

cover-TaviGevinsonThis review appears in the Aug/Sept 2012 issue with cover girl Tavi Gevinson. Subscribe now.

Tagged in: Indian food, easy dishes, cooking, book review, book   

The opinions expressed on the BUST blog are those of the authors themselves and do not necessarily reflect the position of BUST Magazine or its staff.




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