3 Tips for Simple, Seasonal Indian Recipes at Home

Meera Sodha is the author of the cookbook Made in India: Recipes from an Indian Family Kitchen. She joins us to talk about using seasonal produce in quick and simple Indian home cooking. 

Kara Rota
2-minute read
Episode #71

Meera Sodha realized that she had to preserve her family's recipes while at an Indian restaurant in London with friends. They asked for her help in ordering, and it became clear to her that many people didn't know the difference between the Indian home cooking she'd grown up with and the fare common in take-out joints and curry houses through the UK and the US. Meera went home to watch her mother cook and learn the recipes that her family had developed over generations: flavor-packed, simple, fast, healthy, and easy to make. Today, Meera joins the Clever Cookstr to tell us about her book, Made in India, and her approach to home cooking.

Here are three tips from Meera's kitchen:

1) Indian Cooking Doesn't Take a Long Time

Slow cooking is associated with restaurant cooking and the proliferation of braised meat curries in lots of sauce. Indian home cooking is focused on fresh flavors and lots of quick-cooking vegetables and proteins. You can use good quality ground spices to save time.

2) Indian Cooking Doesn't Need a Lot of Ingredients

Many of Meera's recipes include less than ten ingredients, and create complex flavors with only two or three spices. Quick-cooking shrimp paired with mustard seeds and garlic is an addictive treat with a short ingredients list and a shorter cook time.

3) Indian Cooking Is Hugely Seasonal

Squash is a robust vegetables that takes warming spices like cinnamon, black pepper, and garam masala so well. Meera's butternut squash curry is hearty and perfect for winter. 

Check out this week's bonus recipes: Jumbo Shrimp with Garlic and Mustard Seeds and Roasted Butternut Squash Curry with Garlic and Tomatoes.

Click here for more of Meera's delicious recipes on Cookstr.

You can buy Made in India on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, IndieBound, Books-a-Million, or Apple.

About the Author

Kara Rota

Kara Rota headed children’s programming at Chicago’s Green City Market and studied food politics at Sarah Lawrence College. Kara has been a featured speaker at numerous venues including Food Book Fair, the Roger Smith Food Conference, and the Brooklyn Food Conference. She has written about food for Irish America Magazine, West Side Rag, Recipe Relay, and Food + Tech Connect, and is the former Director of Editorial & Partnerships at Cookstr.com.