Chef Sanjeev Kapoor has been called “the Rachael Ray of India,” but by Ray’s own admission, he has a bigger audience, has published more books (more than three dozen at last count), been on TV longer, starred in more shows and sold more products. For the past, seventeen years his TV show “Khana Khazana” (“Food Treasure”) has become the longest-running show of any kind in Asia, according to Kapoor, reaching more than 120 countries and more than 500 million viewers. His books have sold an estimated 10 million copies. His Web site,, gets about 25 million hits a month. He owns more than a dozen restaurants. All this and he is an amazing human being!

This month he releases his first US cookbook – How to Cook Indian (STC, 2011). It has close to 500 authentic recipes that reflect his style, his experience and his tastes. (I am happy to say that I played a role in helping the book come together.)

Here is one of my favorite recipes from the book.

Sanjeev’s publisher STC is giving away 5 copies for lucky Life of Spice readers.

To win: leave a comment here about why you want to win this book and then tell your friends about this giveway – by email or Twitter or FB or in person (!!) or however you want!!
I will pick five winners on March 30th at 4 p.m. est. This giveaway is valid only for US and Canada.

Come on.. let’s get your comments in!

(gorgeous photos of the dish taken by the lovely Soma Rathore)


Adapted from “How to Cook Indian” by Sanjeev Kapoor

A tangy potato snack

This recipe will transport you to the capital of India. Delhi, known as “Dilli” in the local dialect, has two sections: Old Delhi and New Delhi. Old Delhi is still the stronghold of eateries that boast the old style of Mughal cooking. New Delhi is replete with contemporary restaurants and street food. This snack, sold on the roadside, is best eaten just after the potatoes are cooked while they’re still crisp.

Serves 4.

1-inch piece fresh ginger, julienned

3 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

5/8 teaspoon table salt

3 large (450 grams) potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes

1 quart (800 ml) vegetable oil

1 large (100 grams) red onion, chopped

1/8 teaspoon black salt (most Indian grocers carry it, if you don’t have, leave it out)

1/2 teaspoon chaat masala (spice mix for chaat; store-bought or home-made)

1/2 teaspoon red chile powder

1/4 teaspoon ground roasted cumin

2 green chiles, diced

3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro

  1. Put the ginger in a small bowl, add 1 teaspoon of the lemon juice and 1/8 teaspoon of the table salt, and stir well. Set aside in the refrigerator.
  2. Put the potatoes in a bowl and toss with 1/4 teaspoon of the table salt.
  3. Place a nonstick wok over medium heat and add the oil. When small bubbles appear at the bottom of the wok, add the potatoes, a few pieces at a time. Cook, stirring with a slotted spoon, for 5 to 6 minutes or until crisp and golden brown. Remove with the slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
  4. Transfer the potatoes to a large bowl. Add the onion, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon table salt, the black salt, chaat masala, chile powder, cumin, chiles, cilantro, and the remaining 2 teaspoons lemon juice, and stir well.
  5. Transfer to a serving bowl, garnish with the ginger, and serve immediately.

Want to meet him in person? He will be at Indique Heights, DC on April 1st and then in NYC (Tulsi – April 5th) and the Varli Festival in NYC on April 7th.

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  1. Yummy recipe right here…I’d love to see the rest…looks like a great book.

  2. I have one of his books from long ago and would love to see more recipes!

  3. I want to win b/c I love the idea of whipping up GOOD Indian food as easily as a RR recipe. Great Post! Totally got me excited! I’ll be posting this on my facebook/frenchwhisk page and Twitter!

  4. Agree, the analogy “Rachael Ray of India” is understatement, Ray doesn’t have a food channel in US.

  5. I would LOVE to win this book because I love his recipes…I have tried quite a few and they have always come out great in the very first trial. My favourite is his ‘Chicken Gold Coin’ and it’ been made so many times by my family! I’ve even blogged about it 🙂

    I’m sure this book is going to hit the charts…I so want one copy, Monica! 🙂

  6. I love chats and will try this recipe; I was planning on buying the book when it came out — I have read your review of it and other comments and think it will be absolutely fabulous to have and to cook from!

  7. I would love to win this book because I am in love with Indian cooking! The flavors, the colors, the way my home smells when I am preparing Indian food, Love it! <3

  8. I would LOVE to have this book! ….I’m an American girl who married an Indian boy. When my In-laws come to visit I would love to surprise them by cooking them a full Indian meal! Wouldn’t my mother-in-law be surprised!! 🙂

  9. I am telling my friends about this contest via FB & twitter!
    (Life’s A Gift on FB & @mommypowers on twitter!)

  10. Sanjeev Kapoor is one of my favorite chefs! Would love to try out all his new recipes!

  11. I’m an Indian-American and after eating my mom’s delicious food all of these years, I’ve finally started to learn basic Indian cooking! I would LOVE Sanjeev Kapoor’s help! Twitter: @naniskitchen

  12. I’m discovering Indian food now and I can’t get enough. I’d love to have this book! I’m telling my followers on Twitter about this, too!

  13. I have been following Sanjeev Kapoor since I was a little girl, and I am fascinated by how he makes everything looks so simple! I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to have to cookbook! Finally, at least my husband can’t say for my cooking, “What is this?!” 🙂

  14. I’d love to win this book! I’ve seen Sanjeev Kapoor and I love his creativity!!

  15. I’m a twenty-something Indian girl who grew up in South Carolina — aside from my mom’s delicious Punjabi food, I have no clue how to work an Indian kitchen. I don’t even have a spice thali yet! But I’m making it my mission to learn how to cook Indian food so I can teach my kids one day, and I hope I can use Indian cooking as a way to bond with my mom and my fellow Indian friends. Living away from home makes me even more excited to learn to cook my own Indian food at home so I don’t have to go out to eat every time I crave Indian food!

  16. Monica
    would love to own a copy of this book as Sanjeev Kapoor is one Chef I grew up watching. His recipes are good, easy to make and delicious

  17. I only recently discovered the wonders and beauty of Indian food. I am dying to learn how to cook it at home. So, far, the only Indian cookbook I have is your Modern Spice. I would really love to try Chef Kapoor’s recipes.
    Thank you for this cool offer!

  18. I have 2 books of his and have cooked quite a lot of recipes from it. My most fav. till date is “Paneer drumstick” that I also blogged about in my sit., Needless to say, it is also one of the most made recipes in my site given the number of entries in the “I Made This” section of my website for that recipe. I would love to know his recipes in this book made for the US audience 🙂

  19. I want it because I want to eat more Indian food that’s not take out!

  20. Love his recipe… everytime a hit at home… I even blogged about his Chicken Chettinadu… I am looking forward to his new book… 🙂

  21. Just made butter chicken by the seat of my pants (or taste buds) two nights ago. It turned out quite good, but a cookbook would be nice. 🙂

  22. love your blog! I love this Indian potato snack. Thanks for sharing.

  23. I adore Sanjeev Kapoor and have made some of his recipe from the very popular Khana Khazana show. :-). would absolutely love to have this cookbook of his. Thanks for such awesome giveaways Monica.


  24. I love Indian cooking & would love this book.

  25. As a vegetarian for over 20 years, I appreciate that Indian cuisine has so many non-meat options (and yet satisfies my meat-eating companions when we eat out). I could live on saag paneer and chana masala. This book would help me vary my Indian repertoire!

  26. Indian recipes a la Rachel Ray? I’m curious, and would ove to own this book!

  27. Sharon Raghavachary

    This looks amazing and I’d love to try some of his other recipes.

  28. I have watched his cooking show as a kid and I think it is the first cooking show I really liked. Would like to have his boook to do easy and tasty recipes

  29. This looks wonderful! Would love to win a copy and try some new recipes!

  30. I would be thrilled to win this cookbook because growing up, I loved eating the delicious Indian food my mom made, but never wanted to learn. Now that I’ve got a home, hubby, and kid of my own, I feel a bit ashamed that I’m more comfortable cooking American, Italian, or other Asian cuisines, but not Indian. I definitely need to learn how to Cook Indian! (I’m Nazneen Nathani on FB).

  31. OMg this looks so yummm…. I think im going to be doing some experimenting tomorrow in the kitchen!!! 🙂 Would love to get this book!!!…. BTW thats such a pretty front cover!!! hugs!

  32. I love cooking …and only one reason behind winning this book is for winning my husbands heart…he loves chat and variety food…so all this for him:))

  33. Wow, the pictures are awesome. Well, of course I’d want to win because I love Sanjeev Kapoor. My parents have ZTV and this is the ONLY show I watch and love watching him. I love how he explains the dishes and I’m impressed how he doesn’t use too much oil in most of his dishes. Sanjeev Kapoor made it easier for me to learn how to cook INdian food… he’s awesome! 🙂
    Will retweet and facebook tihs!

  34. I love Indian food and it’s what I usually eat 99% of the time when I go for take out. love the spices that keeps me warm when it’s cold and rainy in this foggy city. I hope to win 🙂

  35. hey i just want..want..want….want want this book. the reasons many many……….space is not enough to type

  36. I recently tried Sanjeev Kapoor’s Indian Style Mustard Greens recipe that was featured in Food and Wine (great article by the way Monica!) and it was so healthy and delicious! I would love to see all the recipes in his new book.

  37. I am learning more about Indian cooking all the time and would like to continue. enjoyed your books, Monica, so something that you helped come together intrigues me too as a writer.

  38. Monica,
    I m a big big fan of Sanjeev Kapoor. Love his style of cooking n hosting the show. Try using his recipes to make my mediocre cooking skills a little more tolerable for my kids , who still are making choices between Indian food and all other cuisines easily accessible. Am working towards a fusion kind of flavor to make them eat n this book seems like another hit and will be very resourceful.

  39. Wonderful to know about Sanjeev Kapoor. I want those potatoes for breakfast, this morning!

  40. I just love Indian food but all the recipes I find are either impossible, or don’t even come close to the goodness they could be (I’m talking about you, myriad of “butter chicken” recipes on the internet). Eating out is best but so expensive.

  41. Indian tastes are my obsession right now. My family has to put up with black mustard seeds and kari leaves. And, I’m starting to navigate through my local Indian market. Good thing the proprietor is helpful! Right now, I’ve been checking cookbooks out of the library (yours too, Monica!). I need Sanjeev Kapoor’s cookbook to start my permanent collection.

  42. Wow! If that recipe is indicative of what this book will be like, it is a “must-have” for me. I love Sanjeev Kapoor and have bought a few smaller books that have shown up at local Indian stores. I was very excited when I heard about this larger book, which is about to be released.

  43. I love Indian food but haven’t the faintest clue how to cook it. This book would be very educational!

  44. I want the Book! because its by Sanjeev Kapoor!

  45. Indian cuisine is sadly underrepresented in my cookbook collection (of course, I have “Modern Spice”!).

  46. Wow, how fun! My mother-in-law is a big fan of Sanjeev…..I know she would love a copy!

  47. I am a novice at cooking Indian food, so I would like to win this book because it would be like a bible of Indian cooking for me. Thank you for the chance to win!

  48. I would *love* to win this! Largely because other than your own fantastic cookbook, I don’t own one that’s specifically devoted to India. That’s a big gap in my collection.

  49. I have just recently started experimenting with Indian cuisine since my son decided to become a vegetarian. I don’t have any cookbooks that are devoted specifically to Indian food and woud love to have this cookbook.

  50. The simplicity yet spiciness of the ALOO CHAAT DILLI STYLE makes me want to explore more of this exotic cuisine. Perhaps this book will inspire me to try my hand at cooking Indian food once a week.

  51. As much as I am biased towards indian food, what better way to learn the nuances of cooking from the master chef himself. I believe Indian food is as rich and deep as it’s cuisine and as diverse and authentic as the country itself. I also want to cook and learn from Sanjeev himself. This book will enable me to achieve this.

  52. When I moved from India to the USA, I hardly knew ins and out about cooking. With help of Sanjeev Kapoor’s cookbooks and his shows, I have been able to make a style of my own. Food plays a big cultural aspect in Indian families. I feel that this book will help me enhance my skills for Indian food. After all its the little tricks that make the dish so special.

  53. I love Indian food, but I’ve always been too intimidated by its complex flavors to try it in my own kitchen, but if the rest of the recipes in the book are as accessible as this one seems to be, I’d be thrilled to give it a try! My fingers are crossed! 🙂

  54. The latest cookbook by the cooking legend sanjeev kapoor!!Is there any other reason why anyone wouldn’t want to own it??Have grownp up watching sanjeev kapoor on khaana khazana where every weekend even before the show would begin to air ‘ my mom would grab her pen,notepad,glasses; all ready to jot down each of the recipes shown.I remember how she would be totally” inaccesible” for that period of time.She still has those handwritten notes of the recipes .Nothing would make me more pleased than to have a copy of this cookbook.
    tc .

  55. I’ve been watching Chef Kapoor for a year on Khana Khazana. His style of teaching is excellent because he makes the most complex cuisine in the world accesible to all (his website is great). On a recent trip to India I bought 9 of his books and cook from them every weekend. He makes it so easy! With his new book I am certain I can improve my culinary skills. I need all the help I can get!!! Trust me 🙂

  56. I’m almost finished cooking my way through Mangoes and Curry Leaves, so I’m going to need a new project soon. I hope this book can keep me on the subcontinent for a while longer. Thanks for offering the giveaway.

  57. I just finished taking a three week Indian Vegetarian Cooking class, and I’d love to have this book to be able to get even deeper into Indian cooking! I feel like I’ve barely scratched the surface.

  58. Raised in the US, I have learned a bit of home cooking from my mom and mother-in-law but it would be amazing to try the recipes of a renowned chef! Thanks for the chance!

  59. I too love Indian food and it’s bold flavors. I’ve tried some basics at home, but would like to learn more. This looks like the perfect book!

  60. I want to win because my kitchen constantly smells of coriander, cumin and fenugreek these days and I am finding my current Indian cookbook a bit intimidating.

  61. Oh lordy, why WOULDN’T I want this book? I love Indian food and I’m a woman on a mission to find the ultimate Indian dish. How’s that? 🙂

  62. I adore Indian food, and I’d love to own another Indian cookbook, especially one that’s as comprehensive as this one looks to be. Thanks for sharing the one recipe (I want to try the aloo chaat ASAP!), and thanks also for the giveaway.

  63. I follow him on Twitter, so I’m tossing my hat in the ring for the cookbook

  64. I love Indian food but don’t know how to make it at home! Since we rarely eat out, I don’t get to enjoy it as much as I would like. I keep meaning to buy an Indian cookbook, but I don’t know which to pick. This one sounds like a winner!

  65. absolutely love his recipes. I have also tried the same Aloo chaat recipe and it was a big hit..
    I have been watching his shows since I was in school “Khana Khazana”. Never missed it. It was like Sunday Lunch time show for our family. I would love to own one of his Book copies.

  66. also follow him On twitter and twitting about this giveaway!!

  67. I’ve loved Khana Khazana and Sanjeev Kapoor ever since that first episode on Zee TV. Watching him every sunday afternoon became a ritual for me, I would fight off my family members and grab the remote and the space before the TV and stay glued, noting down his recipes in my “diary”!! It would be awesome to win this book!! This would replace my diary 😀

  68. I am off to college and I would love to learn how to make Indian food to save me from greasy cafeteria food. 🙂

  69. As someone who does a lot of Indian cooking for friends I often hear requests to learn how to cook Indian. My recommendation to friends is to get the right spices stocked in your kitchen and suggest some Indian cookbooks that won’t be intimidating. I learned to cook from my mom, so it’s not something I can teach well. I have bought and recommended Modern Spice, but am always on the lookout for other cookbooks I can recommend.

  70. I LOVE Indian food! I just began dabbling in trying to make it myself… this book could really help me along! 🙂

  71. I love Indian food and would like to learn more about how to cook it.

  72. Would love a good indian primer so I can learn how to make more good indian food at home!

  73. I love Indian food, especially homemade Indian food because I can control the heat as well as some ingredients I’m allergic to (like Amchur).

  74. Nothing is more inspirational that Sanjeev. Never liked cooking until I started watching him

  75. laviza shariff (eclectic gourmet)

    would love love Kapoor’s book – I want to make some of his recipes for my family as well as my catering clients! I hope I am a lucky winner!

  76. WOW!~! This looks great! I have been trying new Indian dishes regularly for the last 2 years, but this looks like I would be able to use it more often.

  77. What better way to add to my repertoire of Indian recipes? Recipes from the master chef Sanjeev Kapoor himself. I have been watching him ever since he started Khana Khazana on Zee TV so many years ago- I have since left India but have not stopped being a fan and a student of Sanjeev Kapoor.

  78. My initial forays into cooking Indian food have been delicious but probably not entirely authentic. I’d love some more help in the kitchen delving into the myriad flavors of India.

    500 recipes?! Fantastic.

  79. Lovely yummy recipe. Sanjeev Kapoor truly is great and no way to compare him with Rachel Ray, Love his recipes and have been a fan for almost since the beginning 17 years now 🙂

  80. Let me confess. I’m not a Sanjeev Kapoor fan nor have I watched his shows completely except for a little peep here and there. But, I really admire him for what he has done to Indian cooking and cuisine. When cable TV was in it’s infancy, I believe he was the ‘only’ genuine chef compared to other cooks, who graced our living rooms with their shoddy ambience and amateur style of everything. Sanjeev Kapoor was certainly pleasant and classy. Got to give it to him. It would be interesting to watch him compete against the Iron Chefs in America if ever there was one!

  81. The winners are –

    Joe Kluk
    Kathy Gori
    Aparna Gupta
    And Ambika!!

    Please email me your address so that I can get you the book asap!

    Thanks to all those who entered.

  82. I beg to differ in comparing Chef Kapoor to Rachel Ray… He’s more in the category of the likes of Bobby Flay, Puck or Mario Batali. He is a trained culinary professional unlike Rachel who, by her own admission, refers to herself as a cook rather than a chef…
    Looks like I missed out on the giveaway.. Ah well, already got mine last friday!

  83. Thought of you when I saw this chef’s spice line at the new Indian market near me.

    I felt very cool for recognizing his name, thanks to your educating me.

  84. Such a shame that I’m ready to hoard so many baking & western cuisine books while not having a single Sanjeev Kapoor’s book. I got to pick this!!

  85. I looked at his book for the first time, went thru some of the pages and felt that i should have had this book long time back. Steps are very easy to follow. I can find all the receipes that I want. I would really like to get this book so that I can show it to some of my American friends who are really into Indian veg. food. I cooked Chole using the receipe from this book and my son was impressed telling me that this is first time you cooked good chole.

  86. I love this guy books, more over i am Indian food lover.. looking forward for more books like this

  87. I like Indian Food, Indian foods are so delicious and even scientists believe the presence of chemical compounds in Indian dishes that are good for health.

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