5 Indian Cookbooks That Will Shape How You Eat

Books were always a source of fascination for me as a child, it seemed incomprehensible that the knowledge of the world can be compressed in sheaves of paper. But every page opened up portals to new worlds far beyond the borders of my own experiences and cookbooks have a similar magic of their own. These books can take you back in time, to states and tables that you may never have sat at and help you savour meals from afar. Each one shaped my own perception of food in its own way and perhaps they’ll soon be a treasured part of your collection too. 

Indian Food (A Historical Companion) by K.T. Achaya

The bible for anyone wanting to know more about Indian food, this is the book with all the answers. K.T. Achaya was an oil chemist, food scientist, nutritionist and food historian who dedicated his life to tracing the origins of almost every common Indian ingredient in meticulous records and his research has definitely stood the test of time.

Masala Lab by Krish Ashok

From the overflowing mind of Krish Ashok comes this fascinating journey into the science behind everyday cooking. Breaking down kitchen chemistry into reader-friendly factoids, this book helps even the novice cook get to grips with what’s actually going on behind the scenes to make food taste the way it does. 

Asma’s Indian Kitchen - Asma Khan

Written by the celebrated chef of Darjeeling Express in London, this book is a touching journey through India through Asma’s eyes. It follows a culinary trail from her hometown in Kolkata and then along her travels through the Himalayas and beyond. She explains her deep connection with food and how it kept her tied to her roots no matter where life took her

Whose Samosa Is It Anyway? - Sonal Ved

Best known for her work on Tiffin, a deep dive into regional cuisine, this more narrative work by Sonal Ved tells the tales behind some of those dishes. Delving into the fascinating origin stories of some of the foods we consider Indian it makes you question how much you really know about the food you eat, and how much is still left to learn. 

The Indian Pantry: The Very Best of Rude Food - Vir Sanghvi

This witty exploration of the way India eats takes you into the history of things you may not even have considered. Why is haldi suddenly so popular around the world? Do avocados live up to the craze? Which fruit and vegetables are indigenous to India? A take on modern culinary habits with a dash of history, this book will have you chuckling from start to finish.