Anytime we visit another town, finding great Indian food is a must – but the deeply flavorful dishes can be pretty dang hard to come by when hanging in the Big Sky state.

Cue the beautiful book Thali: A Joyful Celebration of Indian Home Cooking by Maunika Gowardhan.

Filled with rich history, flavor profiles and ingredient basics, this book will have you confidently cooking up the good stuff in no time.

Don’t believe me?

Join us in making Spiced Paneer with Tomato and Green Peas.

Chicken Pesto Spaghetti Squash

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  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 2 inches ginger root, chopped 
  • 3 cloves  garlic, chopped
  • 1 cup tomatoes, chopped
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1/2 tsp garam masala


Step 1

Cook rice according to package directions.

Step 2

Fry cheese in 1 tbsp olive oil over medium heat until golden and slightly melty on both sides. Each side should take just a couple of minutes.

Remove from pan and set aside to cool.

Step 3

In blender, blend garlic and ginger with a splash of water to create a smooth paste.

Remove and set aside.

Step 4

In the same blender, blitz the tomatoes and tomato paste.

Remove and set aside.

Step 5

Heat remaining oil in a skillet over medium heat.

Saute onion in oil for about 10 minutes, or until deeper in color and flavorful.

Step 6

Add garlic-ginger paste and saute for a couple of minutes, stirring continuously.

Sprinkle in ground cumin, coriander, turmeric and chili powder. Saute for a minute, then add a splash of water and stir continuously while cooking for another minute.

Step 7

Stir in blended tomatoes and cook for 5 minutes or so.

Add sugar, salt and water. Cover and simmer over low heat for 10 minutes.

Add fried cheese, peas and garam masala. Simmer for another 2 minutes.

Step 8

Serve over rice, garnished with chopped cilantro and alongside warm naan bread.



Original recipe has been altered slightly for ease of measurements and ingredient availability.