Rice, Spice and all Things Nice

A Book Review by Franz Scheurer


Reza Mahammad shows us a very personalised version of Indian Cuisine, part family recipes, part dishes from his restaurant ‘The Star of India’, and part recipes acquired whilst on the road, filming for his TV series.


Reza takes the time to explain utensils, ingredients and methods and all the recipes are very much aimed at the home cook. Reza obviously likes to keep the flavours definite and not blur them by combining too many ingredients.

His food is clean, clear and concise. Reza’s rules state that you must be prepared, happy to jazz it up, go easy on yourself and be brave.


The book is divided into chapters, such as Soups, Snacks and Breads – Fish – Poultry and Game – Meat – Vegetables – Salads, Relishes and Side Dishes – Rice Dishes and finally Desserts. His simple ‘Prawn Curry with Coconut Milk’ is so focused it could almost be Mediterranean, his ‘Duck Varuval’ would be a dinner party hit, the “Haleem’, a typical Muslim dish, especially popular during the month of Ramadan, is comforting and exceedingly rich and the ‘Minced lamb and Lentil Pillau’ a cheap dish that makes a little lamb go a long way and a dish that presents beautifully. My favourite in the book is the ‘Grenadine and Orange Dip’, which makes a fantastic base for a simple Rum Cocktail by adding a good nip of Inner Circle Green Dot Rum.


The book is fun and it will be animating you to cook and it’s distributed by Simon & Schuster (Australia) Pty Limited and will be in the shops as of April 2007.


Look out for it!


RRP $ 45 ISBN 9780743285322