Priya Krishna loves her mother. And she especially loves her mother Ritu’s cooking—so much so that she recently published a cookbook, Indian-ish, inspired by her recipes. Ritu, a software programmer, came up with the dishes as a way to feed the family the flavors of India while living in Dallas, Texas. Priya, who’s a regular contributor to Bon Appétit (keep an eye out for the charming cooking vids in which she calls her parents on the mag’s YouTube channel), wrote Indian-ish as a testament to immigrant adaptation and delicious innovation, highlighting recipes like a saag paneer made with feta and roti pizza. As you can see from this peek inside Priya’s kitchen, she’s not just a pro, but she’s also an active home cook—and wants you to be one, too. “I hope Indian-ish is a cookbook that people actually use,” she says. “I want it to be stained with turmeric and cumin.” And, of course, all of her very favorite ingredients that follow.
“I picked a jar of garlic achaar up from a farmers’ market in Delhi, and I love the pungent, in-your-face garlic flavor and the fact that it’s spreadable. I’m going to mix this into all my pizza sauces.”
“This is the most-used spice in my cabinet. Some people think you can only use it in its ground form, but the seeds have such a wonderfully distinct flavor, smoky, nutty, and intense. I’ll sauté any vegetable in cumin seeds.”
“My favorite meal to cook right now is roasted aloo gobi. My mom has this amazing trick where she pre-roasts the vegetables and then combines them, so they get this really great char and don’t fall apart in the pan. There are, of course, lots of other applications once they’re in the fridge, too.”