My Two Souths: Blending the Flavors of India into a Southern Kitchen

Atlanta-based chef and caterer Asha Gomez hails from Kerala state in South India, where "enticing aromas from pungent seasonings like kodampuli, asafoetida, and cambogia [arise] from cast-iron griddles and clay cooking pots." A resident of the American South for nearly two decades, Gomez's culinary style is one of synthesis and cross-pollination, using Cajun and Southern ingredients in typically Indian recipes and vice versa. My Two Souths walks the reader from breakfast to dessert, showing Gomez's particular talent for eliding the distinctions between foods from different cultures. The cookbook is full of interesting tidbits and personal reflections along with easy-to-navigate steps on how to make homemade chai tea as well as fried rabbit. While Gomez unfortunately doesn't include cook and prep times at the beginning of her recipes, fans of adventurous cooking won't let that deter them. --Noah Cruickshank, adult engagement manager, the Field Museum of Natural History Chicago, Ill.

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