Monsoon Diary2023-08-01T14:35:50+05:30

Monsoon Diary

a memoir with recipes


Click on image to buy


Click on image to buy

Australia edition

sadly out of print

Indian edition

Click on image to buy

UK edition

Click on image to buy

Dutch edition

sadly out of print

A fascinating food narrative

that combines delectable Indian recipes with tales from her life, stories of her delightfully eccentric family, and musings about Indian culture.

Good Reads, starred review.

An entirely enchanting look

at growing up in South India, in an exotic world populated by the flower woman, maamis, and the colorful and opinionated members of an extended Hindu family. Food and recipes are a powerful element in Shoba’s story—tokens of identity and a passport to freedom.

Nancy novgorod, editor in chief, travel+Leisure

I loved this book.

I was a big fan of Milk Lady of Bangalore, so I just bought this in paperback. I love Shoba's writing. It is engrossing and fun.

Rob Landerman, Good Reads

Reviews and articles

Passage to India: Cooking With Shoba Narayan

‘In a proper Indian meal you have to balance six tastes," explains food writer Shoba Narayan, a native of Madras. "Salt, sweetness, tartness, bitterness, sour, astringent. So every family strives to have these six tastes in every meal." She flashes a mischievous grin."Of course, no one ever really does. Or at least not in our family. Balance is a goal."

Thank you, Vanity Fair….

And then there are the stories by writers-first-cooks-second that are just particularly well-illustrated through food. Shoba Narayan’s 2003 Monsoon Diary describes growing up in Madras, India and summering in Kerala on the South Indian coast before making her way to Mount Holyoke—she fell in love with such new delicacies as blue corn nachos and salsa, but stayed devoted to the food she grew up with, like yoghurt rice, her preferred late night dorm snack. 

Thanks for the plug, Ashville

"And, while there was precedent for a memoir with recipes (Elizabeth Bard’s Picnic in Provence, Shoba Narayan’s Monsoon Diary and an entire Goodreads list dedicated to “books shelved as cookbook-memoir”), “the cooking lessons with Jonah linked me to the way food was central to both of our stories,” Smith says."

Monsoon Diary on social media

"HOW had I been cooking/eating/reading this long and not devoured Monsoon Diary, by Shoba Narayan? It seems unthinkable now that I have read it cover to cover in about a day (the 20 inches of snow outside helped me a little).

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