Cook, Eat, Write


Richa Tilokani reviews “Around the world with the Tadka Girls” published by Westland

The book Around the world with the Tadka Girls is as yummy as its title suggests. It is written by two friends – Ruchira Ramanujam from the North and Ranjini Rao from the South, bringing a nice mix of cultural flavours. Plus Ruchira brings in her techie attitude and Ranjini her writer’s sensibilities to give a nice “tadka” to the whole affair.

In their words, both the writers love to eat, cook and write and this is apparent right from the first page itself. Whether it’s a Mexican flavour you crave or a mix of French and Mediterranean cuisines, you will find them here and much more too.

Tasty chapters

The book is divided helpfully into sections titled breakfast and brunch, bits and brews, soups and salads, bread basket, pastas and rice, sweet treats, signature tadka and fiesta fare. So you can conveniently refer to the sections you are interested in and find yummy suggestions, depending on your mood and the time of day.

The book offers brand new recipes that have been perfected by both the authors after many years of travel and of course, trial and error. They are supplemented with a lot of useful tips especially for newbies like the right use of the measurement scale, amount of spices to be used, indicative times etc. which makes the entire cooking process much less daunting. The book also carries pictures of the final dishes, so you will know what your potato paneer tart, malia arancini or the chocolate bark should look like. There are lighter options too – like the chicken and cabbage borsht or the hara bhara tofu tikka.

There are also useful tips for the health conscious – like making flour from soya, ragi, bajra, brown rice or even urad dal to bring in goodness and health along with taste.

Sweet treat

The range of desserts is mouth watering too – the caramel pudding with chocolate ganache is a work of art in the authors’ own words – full of caramel and mixed with layers of custard, topped with a grand ganache. Or would you rather prefer a yummy peach pie with shortcut puff pastry or the delicious red berry crumble, which can be whipped up rather quickly?

Kids will also enjoy the goodies from the section titled Funnibbles like cheesy pinwheel crackers, cucumber boats, watermelon ice popsicles, mango on a stick etc. Don’t they all sound mouth-watering?

Ranging from the bed and breakfast menus at Michigan to the healthy goodies from a sunny Provence kitchen, this book will leave you asking for more. Read on a lazy Sunday and cook along to make it a delicious weekend.