Imported from India, this is a collection of recipes from artists who have been part of 1Shanthiroad, a gallery and exhibition space in Bangalore. It is a compact, handsomely designed book edited by the gallery's founder and illustrated by a former artist-in-residence.
"Food is a lubricant that makes things move and sustains 1Shanthiroad as a growing community of people," writes editor Suresh Jayaram. "It brings us together and sparks conversations among different cultures."
The dishes, contributed by more than 75 artists, largely reflect the cooking of Karnataka, the state of which Bangalore is the capital, and are predominantly vegetarian. There are, however, a small number dishes that are from farther away: a fish curry from Bihar in northeast India; a mutton dish from Kashmir; a stuffed bread from Azerbaijan; a paella; brownies.
Often, in the notes following the recipes, the artists reveal clues to a dish's origins or associations. A kind of stir-fry is popular among the transgender community in Bangalore. A mango-coconut drink is ideal to "offset the effects of the searing April sun by inducing sleep postprandial." Another is a dish "offered annually to the family ancestor (Velichappadu Ammavan)."
This is a charming and generous volume. Our copies are currently from a second printing, which now includes an index, and printed in two hardcover colors. Please enjoy the surprise of allowing us to choose which one you get.