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Ever wondered why your grandmother threw a teabag into the pressure cooker while boiling chickpeas, or why she measured using the knuckle of her index finger? Why does a counter-intuitive pinch of salt make your kheer more intensely flavourful? What is the Maillard reaction and what does it have to do with fenugreek? What does your high-school chemistry knowledge, or what Ever wondered why your grandmother threw a teabag into the pressure cooker while boiling chickpeas, or why she measured using the knuckle of her index finger? Why does a counter-intuitive pinch of salt make your kheer more intensely flavourful? What is the Maillard reaction and what does it have to do with fenugreek? What does your high-school chemistry knowledge, or what you remember of it, have to do with perfectly browning your onions? Masala Lab by Krish Ashok is a science nerd’s exploration of Indian cooking with the ultimate aim of making the reader a better cook and turning the kitchen into a joyful, creative playground for culinary experimentation. Just like memorizing an equation might have helped you pass an exam but not become a chemist, following a recipe without knowing its rationale can be a sub-optimal way of learning how to cook. Exhaustively tested and researched, and with a curious and engaging approach to food, Krish Ashok puts together the one book the Indian kitchen definitely needs, proving along the way that your grandmother was right all along.


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Ever wondered why your grandmother threw a teabag into the pressure cooker while boiling chickpeas, or why she measured using the knuckle of her index finger? Why does a counter-intuitive pinch of salt make your kheer more intensely flavourful? What is the Maillard reaction and what does it have to do with fenugreek? What does your high-school chemistry knowledge, or what Ever wondered why your grandmother threw a teabag into the pressure cooker while boiling chickpeas, or why she measured using the knuckle of her index finger? Why does a counter-intuitive pinch of salt make your kheer more intensely flavourful? What is the Maillard reaction and what does it have to do with fenugreek? What does your high-school chemistry knowledge, or what you remember of it, have to do with perfectly browning your onions? Masala Lab by Krish Ashok is a science nerd’s exploration of Indian cooking with the ultimate aim of making the reader a better cook and turning the kitchen into a joyful, creative playground for culinary experimentation. Just like memorizing an equation might have helped you pass an exam but not become a chemist, following a recipe without knowing its rationale can be a sub-optimal way of learning how to cook. Exhaustively tested and researched, and with a curious and engaging approach to food, Krish Ashok puts together the one book the Indian kitchen definitely needs, proving along the way that your grandmother was right all along.

30 review for Masala Lab : The Science of Indian Cooking

  1. 5 out of 5

    Avani

    I've always been scared when it comes to cooking, for one reason that it was sounding very boring to me and second reason it being very tough! But everyone's gotta learn atleast basic cooking right 🥺 we all get bored of restuarant food someday and want some comfort food 😋 Masala Lab by Krish Ashok is a non-fiction book about the science of Indian cooking. The book talks about some all old tricks and tips and explains us in a very simple way the link between healthy and right eating with scientifi I've always been scared when it comes to cooking, for one reason that it was sounding very boring to me and second reason it being very tough! But everyone's gotta learn atleast basic cooking right 🥺 we all get bored of restuarant food someday and want some comfort food 😋 Masala Lab by Krish Ashok is a non-fiction book about the science of Indian cooking. The book talks about some all old tricks and tips and explains us in a very simple way the link between healthy and right eating with scientific research and testing. Hats off to the author for researching and testing at such a great extent for us readers and bringing this book to us. I'm half way through the book and have already quoted and highlighted so many things 😄 I recommend you guys to pick this up even if you're a great cook or a non cook like me 😬 But the way the book is written won't even feel like it's cooking, but more of a story. I loved the creative writing style of the author and compilation of thie book. The illustrations and charts in the book are very cute and helpful at the same time. It helps us gain a better idea and understanding of the topic.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Pooja Desai

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I learnt about this book from Amit Varma's the seen and unseen podcast. I have always followed recipes passed down by family pretty blindly, Sometimes I wondered why do it this way, but never found easy answers. This is a good book for all curious home cooks, it talks about food science of Indian cooking, on a meta level. Things I learnt from this book : - How to use of baking soda - Use of alcohol in cooking - Why a certain flavor combination is used frequently - I specifically found rice, pulao, gr I learnt about this book from Amit Varma's the seen and unseen podcast. I have always followed recipes passed down by family pretty blindly, Sometimes I wondered why do it this way, but never found easy answers. This is a good book for all curious home cooks, it talks about food science of Indian cooking, on a meta level. Things I learnt from this book : - How to use of baking soda - Use of alcohol in cooking - Why a certain flavor combination is used frequently - I specifically found rice, pulao, gravy generators helpful - Value of maintaining food log. - Science of rice A bit repetitive at times, but definitely worth the read. 

  3. 4 out of 5

    Avani

    I've always been scared when it comes to cooking, for one reason that it was sounding very boring to me and second reason it being very tough! But everyone's gotta learn atleast basic cooking right 🥺 we all get bored of restuarant food someday and want some comfort food 😋 Masala Lab by Krish Ashok is a non-fiction book about the science of Indian cooking. The book talks about some all old tricks and tips and explains us in a very simple way the link between healthy and right eating with scientifi I've always been scared when it comes to cooking, for one reason that it was sounding very boring to me and second reason it being very tough! But everyone's gotta learn atleast basic cooking right 🥺 we all get bored of restuarant food someday and want some comfort food 😋 Masala Lab by Krish Ashok is a non-fiction book about the science of Indian cooking. The book talks about some all old tricks and tips and explains us in a very simple way the link between healthy and right eating with scientific research and testing. Hats off to the author for researching and testing at such a great extent for us readers and bringing this book to us. I'm half way through the book and have already quoted and highlighted so many things 😄 I recommend you guys to pick this up even if you're a great cook or a non cook like me 😬 But the way the book is written won't even feel like it's cooking, but more of a story. I loved the creative writing style of the author and compilation of thie book. The illustrations and charts in the book are very cute and helpful at the same time. It helps us gain a better idea and understanding of the topic.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Utkarsh Sankhla

    " Knowledge is knowing tomato is a fruit, wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad, and philosophy is wondering if ketchup is a smoothie - Anonymous" This is how one of the chapters in Masala Lab begins and its this narration, peppered with (yes, pun#1) the authors own judgements on people who do things like leave whole spices in the biryani and put raw radishes in salads makes the book a breezy read. It is tempered with (#2) just the right amount of sass that comes to the rescue everytime the s " Knowledge is knowing tomato is a fruit, wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad, and philosophy is wondering if ketchup is a smoothie - Anonymous" This is how one of the chapters in Masala Lab begins and its this narration, peppered with (yes, pun#1) the authors own judgements on people who do things like leave whole spices in the biryani and put raw radishes in salads makes the book a breezy read. It is tempered with (#2) just the right amount of sass that comes to the rescue everytime the science of cooking gets too technical. This book is NOT filled with insights that you can use to curry (#3) favours with the REAL cooks at home - its something that the author also says upfront - but rather, educates us on why certain cooking ingredients are used in certain ways. It's a great book if you are someone who has always wondered why tea bags are used to cook chhole and why ginger and garlic are added before tomatoes while cooking any thing. What I liked: The science behind spices, cooking and everything really! Liked the illustrations, the jokes and everything in the book really. Have decided to buy a coffee grinder now, so definitely have been influenced by this book ;) What I didn't like: The book did get a bit tedious and formulaic after about the 70% mark - found the AHA moments decreasing from about here. Partly understandable, because the last sections are more about setting up metaprocesses around cooking, so can get a bit dry.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Vidhya Thakkar

    Masala Lab by Krish Ashok, published by @penguinindia is a guide for all those who love to cook or wants to know the science behind the Masalas or the smallest techniques used by our mother and grandmother in the kitchen. This book will bit only make you a better book but also tells about the art of turning the kitchen into a joyful, creative playground. My grandmother always says Kitchen is the second-best place in the house after Temple. It's a place where you will find solutions, just look aro Masala Lab by Krish Ashok, published by @penguinindia is a guide for all those who love to cook or wants to know the science behind the Masalas or the smallest techniques used by our mother and grandmother in the kitchen. This book will bit only make you a better book but also tells about the art of turning the kitchen into a joyful, creative playground. My grandmother always says Kitchen is the second-best place in the house after Temple. It's a place where you will find solutions, just look around and have patience. This book is a gem. It's not only about recipes but about cooking hacks too. It has the slightest details that one needs to know. A well researched, well-detailed and a well-structured book with lots of vital information with a curious and engaging approach to food. The simple and easy writing style makes it easy to understand. The different concepts which the author presented are mind-blowing. It's a helpful book that will surely turn you into a better cook. I am going to try out a few recipes soon.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Dorrit

    I'll be completely honest with you: I don't care for cooking. I'm happy eating a sunny side-up egg, pb&j toast and, begrudgingly, my mother's food. My mother, unlike all other mothers, is not the best cook. Nor is she a reader, or a recipe follower. Unfortunately she also refuses to stop cooking. So, I read this for her. "That’s all from me, folks! Go forth and experiment in your kitchens, but please don’t use your newfound scientific knowledge to harass people who are naturally good cooks." I've I'll be completely honest with you: I don't care for cooking. I'm happy eating a sunny side-up egg, pb&j toast and, begrudgingly, my mother's food. My mother, unlike all other mothers, is not the best cook. Nor is she a reader, or a recipe follower. Unfortunately she also refuses to stop cooking. So, I read this for her. "That’s all from me, folks! Go forth and experiment in your kitchens, but please don’t use your newfound scientific knowledge to harass people who are naturally good cooks." I've been sending her actionable snippets from this book (which to its credit, are many). But I don't think she's reading them either... I suppose this book does what it says it does. I don't have a comparison to measure it against to say anything definitively. But what it needs badly, is a better editor. Some of the analogies and phrases made my eyes bleed. (I edit for a quality conscious longform publ, so I have atrocious standards.)

  7. 5 out of 5

    Sreeraag Mohan

    As I stepped into adult life and moved out of home to live and work in Bangalore, I was faced with the same dilemma as other millennias do when they move across towns for work: do I cook, hire somebody to cook, or just order takeout every other day? Partly as a result of the peanuts I made as a salary in the initial years of my professional career, I chose to cook for myself. I did not have anybody to coach me, except for YouTube, and a few good friends. As a result, most of my dishes followed r As I stepped into adult life and moved out of home to live and work in Bangalore, I was faced with the same dilemma as other millennias do when they move across towns for work: do I cook, hire somebody to cook, or just order takeout every other day? Partly as a result of the peanuts I made as a salary in the initial years of my professional career, I chose to cook for myself. I did not have anybody to coach me, except for YouTube, and a few good friends. As a result, most of my dishes followed recipes and video tutorials to the t, and for someone who always likes to know what's happening behind the scenes when you do something, I never bothered to experiment with flavours or ideas in the most accessible laboratory of them all: the kitchen. Krish Ashok, a self-confessed science-nerd and cook's Masala Lab is an interesting exploration of the science behind Indian cooking. Krish takes an algorithmic approach and employs the scientific method to almost all of your grandmother's tricks in the kitchen. Krish's creative writing style and quirky illustrations mask the superb research and testing that has gone into the book, and the result is a work that is a pleasure to read, yet is an indispensable companion for the struggling, autodidact Indian millennial cook.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Jaane

    I was only going to read 50 books this year, but my 51st arrived in mail this morning. My brother claimed it was an early christmas gift, but we both know he just wants better meals when me meet in a post-pandemic world, and boy is he going to have his mind-blown with this book in my arsenal. While most books don't leave my shelves and to-read lists, this book will never leave my kitchen. It is filled with the most amazing illustrations, spells, and arcane knowledge. If you spot a woman with a w I was only going to read 50 books this year, but my 51st arrived in mail this morning. My brother claimed it was an early christmas gift, but we both know he just wants better meals when me meet in a post-pandemic world, and boy is he going to have his mind-blown with this book in my arsenal. While most books don't leave my shelves and to-read lists, this book will never leave my kitchen. It is filled with the most amazing illustrations, spells, and arcane knowledge. If you spot a woman with a witch's hat , hunched over a bubbling, sputtering pot of an overnight-simmer stew, with this book under her arm.; come say Hi to her and bring the biggest plate you can find. P.S: All my love and virtual hugs to Krish, for giving me my best read this year

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jayashree Doley

    This book has been a lovely companion to lockdown cooking. Also love that the author has included a section on methodology at the end and provided recommendations for other books if one is further interested in understanding the science of flavour. Thoroughly enjoyed his writing style. Almost therapeutic!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Pavithra Mouli

    There is quite a lot of new info in this book. I expected as much, having been a long time follower of Krish Ashok's various social accounts - Soundcloud, Twitter, Tumblr. What I thought it was lacking is better editing. I would have truly enjoyed it a lot more and would have started gifting it to friends if the ideas were presented better. Instead, I am left with a lot of notes and ideas I want to research more on and rewrite for my future self and to share with friends. There is quite a lot of new info in this book. I expected as much, having been a long time follower of Krish Ashok's various social accounts - Soundcloud, Twitter, Tumblr. What I thought it was lacking is better editing. I would have truly enjoyed it a lot more and would have started gifting it to friends if the ideas were presented better. Instead, I am left with a lot of notes and ideas I want to research more on and rewrite for my future self and to share with friends.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Rosie M. Banks

    This book is the ultimate guide to everything I have always wanted to know. Why food tastes like food and how to make it taste better.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Harsha Varma

    What is the one thing we eat which did not originate in a living organism? (other than water cause we’re mostly water anyway) Other than such fun trivia, this book is a playful way of looking at cooking. It’s mostly focused on how to make cooking easier in our daily lives. The algos/ recipes for making various dishes are similar to what an amateur cook learns in an Indian household, thanks to our mothers. It’s handy to have them in a written format. It also explains why certain things are done in What is the one thing we eat which did not originate in a living organism? (other than water cause we’re mostly water anyway) Other than such fun trivia, this book is a playful way of looking at cooking. It’s mostly focused on how to make cooking easier in our daily lives. The algos/ recipes for making various dishes are similar to what an amateur cook learns in an Indian household, thanks to our mothers. It’s handy to have them in a written format. It also explains why certain things are done in a specific way, like why onions go before garlic while cooking a curry or why brining meat is more important than marinating. And it encourages the user to experiment. This whole clamour for authenticity is fraught with tribalism. We're lucky to have such diverse cuisines which evolved from various constraints. There are no set rules. So, instead of defining oneself on what one doesn't eat, experiment. Quotes: 1. The rice, and not the meat, is the star of the biryani. 2. Time is an illusion. Lunchtime, doubly so. - Douglas Adams 3. Indian cooking, in particular, is supposed to be an art wrapped in oriental mystique, soaked in exotic history and deep-fried in tradition and culture. 4. Cooking is essentially chemical engineering in a home laboratory, known as a kitchen, with an optional lab coat, known as an apron. 5. When recipes call for tomato puree, noobs add tomato puree, experts add tomato paste and legends add tomato ketchup. 6. I enjoy cooking with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food I’m cooking. 7. When you put human beings, carbohydrates and some microbes together, alcoholic drinks will emerge. 8. Don’t let anyone treat you like you are upma. You are biryani. 9. Knowledge is knowing tomato is a fruit, wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad and philosophy is wondering if ketchup is a smoothie. P.S: Salt

  13. 4 out of 5

    Sharat Karekaatt

    This is not a recipe book. It is, quite the opposite. Masala Labs asks you to discard the recipes... In fact, it goes a step further by urging you to burn the recipes. Cooking is a sacred art, yes... But it is also a craft perfected through decades, even centuries. This book implores the reader to not only learn how to cook something but go beyond and understand why it is cooked the way it is cooked. This would help us to build models of a dish and then we can build on those models to create som This is not a recipe book. It is, quite the opposite. Masala Labs asks you to discard the recipes... In fact, it goes a step further by urging you to burn the recipes. Cooking is a sacred art, yes... But it is also a craft perfected through decades, even centuries. This book implores the reader to not only learn how to cook something but go beyond and understand why it is cooked the way it is cooked. This would help us to build models of a dish and then we can build on those models to create something more. As the author says "we are not looking for authenticity here, we are looking for adventurous." The book has algorithms to make base gravies which can be built upon to create something heavenly. It tells you what happens when you cook rice so that you can get it fluffy instead of sticky next time. The water-flour ratio for different types of Indian breads is explained and how climatic conditions can alter them significantly, (that's why recipes don't work) so you need to experiment yourself what works for you. Book also packs valuable life lessons like pressure cooking is about time not whistles (I know! Shocking!!). Tidbits on creating perfect spice mix from whole spices for any dish and relieve yourself of buying masala powders ever again. It also humanizes traditional villains in Indian kitchen: the baking soda, the MSG, and alcohol. Mind you reading all this wouldn't make you a better cook that your wife would bow down and kiss your hands. No, she would still be cursing you for making a mess of the kitchen... But there would be compliments. Yes. She told me the chana masala I made, following the spice algorithm in the book, reminded her of Delhi and the sambar I made (with better awareness about usage of baking soda and acids) of her grandmother. I cried.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    Anyone who's even moderately active on some form of Indian social media must now be quite familiar with the existence of this book and its author. I'd already read excerpts from it in the form of articles which I found well-written, and the book in its entirety is also very informative and enjoyable. Not only does it make a good revision on basic food science & chemistry which I am always curious about, but also provided a bunch of new tips and tricks for the future, all explained in a very luci Anyone who's even moderately active on some form of Indian social media must now be quite familiar with the existence of this book and its author. I'd already read excerpts from it in the form of articles which I found well-written, and the book in its entirety is also very informative and enjoyable. Not only does it make a good revision on basic food science & chemistry which I am always curious about, but also provided a bunch of new tips and tricks for the future, all explained in a very lucid and interesting style with some delightful illustrations and metaphors. So yes, like Indian food's answer to Samit Nosran's "Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat". My only beef with the book is that it could definitely do with some better editing - there's a bit too much repetitive text and most of it unnecessary. . All that said, I feel the need to comment on how a lot of Twitter threads on the book seem to be focused on how cooking has suddenly been made cool and fun after reading the book. I find this an extremely amusing and a slightly infuriating POV since most people (women?) who cook daily meals for their families have never had this privilege of choice. Personally, most forms of everyday cooking are unavoidable and boring chores for me (and also for many other women I know!), just due to the way my life and routine is structured, and so I am always on the lookout for cheat methods/one pot meals and hacks to make my life easier. This book is NOT the answer to make everyday Indian cooking any less cumbersome. (And the author does not suggest that either!). A good cookbook is a better pick for that. However, it does improve your understanding of what's happening in your food when you're cooking it and does quite a decent job of that.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Balachander

    As a reader of Krish Ashok's blog, his music, memes, articles, cooking videos and of course, his twitter account; it was but obvious that I would buy this book. So of course, I pre-ordered on the day it came out. I read through this faster than I do most thrillers. (not the ideal way for sure - but I'm certainly going to make notes when I try to implement some of the recommendations and suggestions in this.) As Ashok mentions in his book, the first half is around cooking tips and tricks that man As a reader of Krish Ashok's blog, his music, memes, articles, cooking videos and of course, his twitter account; it was but obvious that I would buy this book. So of course, I pre-ordered on the day it came out. I read through this faster than I do most thrillers. (not the ideal way for sure - but I'm certainly going to make notes when I try to implement some of the recommendations and suggestions in this.) As Ashok mentions in his book, the first half is around cooking tips and tricks that many experienced cooks may be aware of, even if they don't really understand the science of why it is the way it is. Very fascinating. The second half deals with a lot of misconceptions and plain falseties that people educated by whatsapp forwards believe in. (stuff like Msg or baking powder being bad for you). Through all this there are some great tips on everything from the basics (how to cook rice well, how to mix dough for roties well, how to brine, how to make a good salad) to (and this is more important) how to use this understanding of food science to ignore/forget all the nonsensical recipes that you may have tried to memorize/follow in vain and instead, like an engineer, build a series of easy to remember, follow algorithms to make cooking an easier, more successful craft. So inspired was I that I immediately set about making some home made curd and later tried to use the measurements from the cook to make better roties. A must read.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Tannaz Kalyaniwala

    I loved the book, enjoyed the wit and laughed with the author as he made atoms and electrons dance to his pen in the kitchen. However i do want to point out a serious ERROR and hope this is the only one. Ashok says rice does not cook evenly in the microwave in large quantities. He also gives timings to cook a small amount of rice at a time. Since i cook and have cooked rice in the microwave for the last 20 years this is my experience: 1 cup rice = 2 cups water. Either microwave on high for 9 min I loved the book, enjoyed the wit and laughed with the author as he made atoms and electrons dance to his pen in the kitchen. However i do want to point out a serious ERROR and hope this is the only one. Ashok says rice does not cook evenly in the microwave in large quantities. He also gives timings to cook a small amount of rice at a time. Since i cook and have cooked rice in the microwave for the last 20 years this is my experience: 1 cup rice = 2 cups water. Either microwave on high for 9 minutes or 10 OR microwave on high (100%) for 6 minutes, another 6 to 7 minutes on medium (60%). Total-12 to 13 minutes ONLY. 1 minute before the rice is done , cover the dish and let it rest. 2, 3, 4cups at a time, i have cooked similarly, and though i do increase the timings it is never double. 3 cups rice for example needs 8 minutes high and 8 to9 minutes medium (16-17 minutes) Why am i writing this? Not to chew your brains Ashok but because all the innocent souls who follow your timings will have mush instead of rice. And that is why the 4 stars. Your book actually deserves 5 stars for the way it is presented. No hard feelings!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Lakshmi Ramachandran

    The science of Indian cooking is an alluring topic and I jumped and bought the Krish Ashok's book the moment I saw it. It was a disappointment. The book is full of scientific facts. Who cares? I don't want so much science. But I do want to know the science behind the common mistakes that happen in cooking, I do want to know the best way of doing things and the science behind them, and I would love cooking tips and the science behind them. I would like to know why we our grandmothers recommended The science of Indian cooking is an alluring topic and I jumped and bought the Krish Ashok's book the moment I saw it. It was a disappointment. The book is full of scientific facts. Who cares? I don't want so much science. But I do want to know the science behind the common mistakes that happen in cooking, I do want to know the best way of doing things and the science behind them, and I would love cooking tips and the science behind them. I would like to know why we our grandmothers recommended we do things in a certain way, and not in other ways. But what the book offers is a lot of hard science. I am guessing that most ordinary cooks like me will find the book disappointing. I hardly gained anything from it, and I am so interested in kitchen science.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Devdas

    A decent read on the rules of thumb behind Indian cooking, with a strong South Indian bias. The author admits to the bias though, and it doesn't spoil the book. The bias just limits the scope of the work, but the book has never claimed to be exhaustive. Some egregrious mistakes for a software engineer (There is no programming language named PERL), and one on marinades (yogurt based marinades work, even if dry rubs don't). Tested in https://www.dailymotion.com/video/xndufg Worth a read if you aren' A decent read on the rules of thumb behind Indian cooking, with a strong South Indian bias. The author admits to the bias though, and it doesn't spoil the book. The bias just limits the scope of the work, but the book has never claimed to be exhaustive. Some egregrious mistakes for a software engineer (There is no programming language named PERL), and one on marinades (yogurt based marinades work, even if dry rubs don't). Tested in https://www.dailymotion.com/video/xndufg Worth a read if you aren't familiar with Indian cooking and need general guidelines. Interesting if you are familiar with more than two Indian cuisines.

  19. 5 out of 5

    PRASANTH

    What I felt when I read and applied tips from this book: "Krish Ashok, WRITE MORE, WRITE OFTEN." and a little bit more of elaboration in explaining science adds more flavor, still being palatable. You can hit the sweet spot of making food for the brain and stomach in one book. P.S : the humour in "Once all the water has visibly been absorbed, take your vessel of the stove and let it sit for 10 more minutes with the lid closed. At this point, a process called retrogradation happens, where each grai What I felt when I read and applied tips from this book: "Krish Ashok, WRITE MORE, WRITE OFTEN." and a little bit more of elaboration in explaining science adds more flavor, still being palatable. You can hit the sweet spot of making food for the brain and stomach in one book. P.S : the humour in "Once all the water has visibly been absorbed, take your vessel of the stove and let it sit for 10 more minutes with the lid closed. At this point, a process called retrogradation happens, where each grain separates and creates its own identity, much like a teenager reading Ayn Rand," is simply superb.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Saurabh Gokhale

    Had mistakenly pre-judged this by its cover when i saw it first on Twitter. Happy to have been corrected, this book made my January. So many things that all of us have witnessed all our lives in the Indian kitchen have been beautiful explained in the book. The dry sense of humour spread across the book is highly appreciated. I've already purchased 10 copies for my friends and families. This deserves to be on the bookshelf of every food enthusiast! Had mistakenly pre-judged this by its cover when i saw it first on Twitter. Happy to have been corrected, this book made my January. So many things that all of us have witnessed all our lives in the Indian kitchen have been beautiful explained in the book. The dry sense of humour spread across the book is highly appreciated. I've already purchased 10 copies for my friends and families. This deserves to be on the bookshelf of every food enthusiast!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Karthik Shashidhar

    Lots of nice insights in this book. My only problem with this is that the “density of information content” is highly variable. Some pages are packed with information. Others can be glossed over. This makes reading it a bit of an inconsistent experience. Oh, I’m glad i bought the physical book. Keeping it for “reference”. Works well that way

  22. 5 out of 5

    Pramod

    Loved it !. The book explains the scientific principles behind cooking, and suggests ways to improve it, applying those principles. The narration is funny and interesting. Highly recommended if you love cooking.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Chandrima Das

    A handy, well-researched and entertaining book that will elevate every desi nerd's cooking techniques. Deserved a better rating, but it's marred by sub-par editing - there were typos, misplaced sentences, repetition of ideas. A handy, well-researched and entertaining book that will elevate every desi nerd's cooking techniques. Deserved a better rating, but it's marred by sub-par editing - there were typos, misplaced sentences, repetition of ideas.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Aravind Nagarajan

    Useful reference material.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Fern C.

    I liked it but honestly got confused on some parts lol

  26. 4 out of 5

    Pondheron

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Heard about the book on Amit Varma's podcast 'The Seen and The Unseen' as well. A well written how and why guide to Indian cooking laced with the authors unique style of humour. I liked the 'algorithmic' approach to cooking to break out of the tyranny of recipes. Basic science of staples, heart sources, cooking material, tastes etc - sweeping overview of a broad area in a few pages. Encourages using constant experimentation, journalling results and using the algorithms to guide unit culinary jou Heard about the book on Amit Varma's podcast 'The Seen and The Unseen' as well. A well written how and why guide to Indian cooking laced with the authors unique style of humour. I liked the 'algorithmic' approach to cooking to break out of the tyranny of recipes. Basic science of staples, heart sources, cooking material, tastes etc - sweeping overview of a broad area in a few pages. Encourages using constant experimentation, journalling results and using the algorithms to guide unit culinary journey. Great read.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Kushal

    Reads like an extended blog post, and the somewhat flippant style can be infuriating at times, but the content is very interesting and for the most part, very entertaining.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Mithraa Sriraman

    was good in the beginning, gets awfully repetitive and show-offy.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Priya

    Interesting book, for someone who loves science and has interests in cooking!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sheece

    Cool book! You need to love chemistry and cooking to appreciate this book.

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