THE RECIPE BOOK
“YOU LEARN A LOT ABOUT SOMEONE WHEN YOU SHARE A MEAL TOGETHER.”
– ANTHONY BOURDAIN
The recipe book is a timeless publication that documents recipes that have been passed down from one generation to another, and shares a vast culinary heritage across different ethnicities and cultures across the world.
Since the inception of the recipe book, the Time & Talents Cookbook in 1935, all the profits received from it’s sales have been donated to charity. Pre-independence India was a time when the urge for freedom was peppered with the cross-pollination of many different cultures.
The book upholds that tradition with a variety of recipes from different regions of the world. Parsi dishes like Patra in Macchi are interspersed with Gujarati favourites like Undhiyu, and the South Indian Mulligatawny with Hyderabad’s famous Biryani, Sudanese Tamia, English Lancashire Hot Pot.
While our culinary traditions are a significant piece of intangible heritage, the recipe book is also a terrific guide to nutrition and regional cuisine. The recipe book is a lasting legacy of the Time & Talents Club and some of the recipes in it are like heirlooms of a bygone era! It brings together contributions from homes around the world, royal kitchens, celebrities and even iconic hotels! In this way, food becomes a window to culture.
It particularly adds a human touch when a personal recipe is named after the chef – such as Curry A La Zubin Mehta. Several of it’s long-standing contributors are celebrity chefs in their own right.
Grandma’s recipes were not only delicious, several of them were also nutritious and anti-waste. The recipe book has preserved the original formula for several classic dishes from around the world, making it a repository of diet through the ages, and teaching us to cook the way our elders did. It also has a dedicated section to dishes that can be made from “waste” foods which have been featured at various culinary events.
During World War II, the ladies published a booklet of anti-waste recipes, including one that transformed a beloved Parsi egg dish (akuri) into an eggless one made with rotis cooked in masala.
Our food heritage is intrinsic to our culture and the Time & Talents recipe book is like a rich treasure trove of culinary art and history. It creates a platform for global gastronomy (and foodie wisdom) in a single volume. The book also has several healthy recipes, wisdom on how to optimise different food types and ingredients, and several that are simply unique and can only be found within its pages.