Tuesday, June 30, 2015

India on My Platter - Book Review

If you want to travel all over India, at the same time taste the different food that this country can offer, by sitting in one place, here, Saransh Goila presents you a special 2-in-1 "India On My Platter".  The way Saransh explains the beauty of the country covering almost all the important places is just splendid! Very few get a chance to travel the whole country like this young lad did, but I must say he used the opportunity pretty well - to explore the culture as well the cuisine! I had the opportunity to spend around twelve months of my life in the north in Rajasthan and during that period visit the state of Himachal and adjacent cities. He just brought in front of me the beautiful food that I also had the opportunity to taste. I could relive moments in Kullu, Manali and the Rohtang Pass.

Many of us travel all over the country, or even the world; but, only very few excel in the art of narrating our travel experiences. Saransh, take five stars for your narration alone! The way he could even spend time with road-side drivers and present a "Highway Style Dal" by those drivers in his book tells a lot about his passion for cooking and easy-to-mingle type. He got multiple opportunity to spend time with the whole families in many places including the royal lunch in Kangra, Leh, Srinagar, Amritsar and so on (I love his Amritsar experience!). For many of us, days are spent running and we don't have the basic luxury of having food with our own family; but this guy wherever he goes get a family and friends for himself! Lucky Guy indeed! Not only the traditional places, but also he has explored many religious places like Dharamshala, Mathura, ISKCON!

This book also comes with a bonus for its readers - about fifty different recipes that are traditional as well as his own experiments! Before I lost my bachelorhood, I used to cook myself. Now, though not very frequent, I do cook infrequently. Sure, I am going to try some of the recipes in this book. A small suggestion to Saransh and his publishers: Next time a new edition (or set of prints) is planned, please include a 'Table of Contents' section for the recipes presented. It is easy for those to go to a specific recipe instead of searching the whole book. One more thing I miss is that a state that is rich traditionally as well as in cuisines is not covered. Yes, I am talking about my own native state Tamil Nadu. I don't know how he travelled from Munnar to Puducherry without touching Tamil Nadu. And, in case he touched it, I don't know why he didn’t try Tamil Nadu food. Or, perhaps, he thought that there are so many good food types in Tamil Nadu and so didn’t want to try any specific food (still, people love the authentic saambhaar,  of Tamil Nadu, nowhere else you will get such saambhaar)!

This book certainly has added lot of places in my travel list also. Not sure if I can visit all of those, but will certainly keep in mind on what Saransh highlights if I happen to visit these places.

All in all, a perfect blend of culture and cuisine, garnished with a beautiful narration! Sure, everyone will enjoy! Buy from Flipkart to relish it!