Friday, May 27, 2011

CURRY - A Biography

A Fascinating and Delicious Book on Indian Curry


CURRY - A Biography by Lizzie Collingham

There is no greater love than the love of eating and there is no greater pleasure than the joy of reading.

I love eating delicious food. 

I enjoy reading good books.

That's why I was so thrilled when I came across a delightful book on food in my library. The moment I saw the book I grabbed it, rushed home, and spent the rest of the day in sheer bliss relishing this mouthwatering book.

Would you be so good and permit me, my dear Readers, fellow Foodies, and Bibliophiles, to tell you a bit about this wonderful book.

TITLE: Curry: A Biography
AUTHOR: Lizzie Collingham
PUBLISHER: Chatto & Windus, London, 2005, 318 pages
PRICE: £16.99
ISBN 0701173351

The moment you start reading the book you realize that the author truly loves food, loves India, loves history, and loves writing. And that’s why this well researched culinary biography of curry is so fascinating and engrossing.

At the beginning of her preface, Lizzie Collingham tells about the beginnings of her gastromonic adventures in India from the moment she drank her first thick, velvety-sweet and seductive lassi in Colaba Mumbai.

What follows is a remarkable culinary exploration, delving much beyond the study of curry, encompassing fabulous panoply of Indian cuisine like Biryani, ChickenTikka Masala, Vindaloo, Korma, Madras Curry and Curry Powders, Cutlets and Chai, and British food in India.

The highlights of the book are the twenty select recipes at the end of each chapter ranging from Kebabs, Biryani and Korma to Bebinca, Vindaloo and Dhansak, and even laddus and lassis. I tried out the Lamb Korma and it was indeed succulent and delicious.

The ‘meat’ of the book is chapter 6 on “Curry Powder” which includes unique and rare formulations, and even a poem recipe.

This is indeed an ‘unputdownable’ book, replete with lively anecdotes and interesting gastronomic and historical facts. 

The artistic and apt illustrations, vivid maps, attractive design and appealing get-up enhance the enjoyment of the reading experience. 

I wish the author had included authentic restaurants and signature curry eateries from India in the chapter on Curry Travels to make it complete and comprehensive (and fully satiating).

The exhaustive bibliography bears testimony to the research efforts of the author.

Curry – a biography is a delicious book. Relish it, savor it, feast on it.


Copyright © Vikram Karve 2011
Vikram Karve has asserted his right under the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 to be identified as the author of this book review. 
© vikram karve., all rights reserved. 

PS - If you love eating you will love my foodie book  Appetite for a Stroll

About Vikram Karve

A creative person with a zest for life, Vikram Karve is a retired Naval Officer turned full time writer. Educated at IIT Delhi, ITBHU Varanasi, The Lawrence School Lovedale and Bishops School Pune, Vikram has published two books: COCKTAIL a collection of fiction short stories about relationships (2011) and APPETITE FOR A STROLL a book of Foodie Adventures(2008) and is currently working on his novel. An avid blogger, he has written a number of fiction short stories and creative non-fiction articles in magazines and journals for many years before the advent of blogging. Vikram has taught at a University as a Professor for almost 14 years and now teaches as a visiting faculty and devotes most of his time to creative writing. Vikram lives in Pune India with his family and muse - his pet dog Sherry with whom he takes long walks thinking creative thoughts. 

© vikram karve., all rights reserved.

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