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American Masala: 125 New Classics from My Home Kitchenby Suvir Saran
Synopses & Reviews
In Indian Home Cooking, Suvir Saran introduced our taste buds, and our kitchens, to the wonders of cumin, coriander, cardamom, and curry leaves. American Masala takes the next step, marrying Indian flavors with American favorites to create dishes that are exotic, yet familiar; full of complex tastes, yet easy enough for weeknight suppers. Masala—the Hindi word for a blend of spices—is at the heart of Indian cooking. Whether toasted, ground, fried, infused in oil, or fresh, spices are used to layer flavors in simple but profound ways. Bring the same techniques to American classics such as meatloaf, macaroni and cheese, or roasted turkey, and the result is something truly special. Masala also refers to the excitement and vibrancy that come from a house full of friends and family. Simple recipes prepared with staples found in every supermarket mean less time laboring in the kitchen and more time spent enjoying the spice of life.
From snacks and starters and on to the evening meal, the Indian influence brightens the flavors in dishes like:
- Goat Cheese Pesto-Stuffed Chicken Breasts
- Tamarind-Glazed Turkey with Corn Bread-Jalapeño Stuffing
- Crab-and-Salmon Cakes with Spicy Cilantro Aïoli
- Crispy Okra Salad
- Bombay-Style Whole Snapper
- Honey-Glazed Double-Thick Pork Chops
- Pistachio-and-Cardamom Pound Cake with Lemon Icing
- Fried Eggs with Asparagus and Prosciutto
American Masala isnt about traditional Indian food—its about adding new flavors to the great American melting pot, using spices to liven up the old standbys, and enjoying dishes that are as exciting and diverse as life in the big city, and yet as familiar and comforting as your mothers cooking.
"Although the recipes in Saran's aptly titled second cookbook share no unifying principle apart from their deliciousness — whoever heard of Macaroni and Cheese keeping company with Mushroom and Rice Biryani Casserole? — they complement one another in a mysterious way. Such eclecticism reflects how Saran, chef and co-owner of Dvi in New York City, cooks for his family and enormous circle of Tupperware-toting friends. Unlike many other chefs' signature dishes, which originate in a restaurant kitchen, Saran's most inspired creations begin at home. When this cooking-without-borders approach succeeds, as it mostly does, the results taste like wild siblings of the original: bolder, stronger, deeper. Seasonings for a delicious variation on harira, a traditional Moroccan soup, include Aleppo pepper and garam masala; a buttermilk brine for fried chicken is flavored with ginger, coriander and cayenne. Indian dishes like Mashed Potatoes with Mustard Oil, Cilantro and Onions and Bombay-Style Whole Snapper, in which the fish is rubbed with a spice paste before roasting, particularly stand out for their elegance and ease of preparation. 60 color photos not seen by PW." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
In "Indian Home Cooking," Saran introduced the wonders of cumin, coriander, cardamom, and curry leaves. "American Masala" takes the next step, marrying Indian flavors with American favorites to create dishes that are exotic yet familiar; full of complex tastes yet easy enough for weeknight suppers.
About the Author
SUVIR SARANs Manhattan restaurant, Devi, has earned widespread critical acclaim including a Michelin star. His newest restaurant endeavor, the American Masala fast-food chain, will debut in 2007. He lives between Manhattan and his farm in upstate New York.
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