Wednesday, November 5, 2008

"Cooking the Indian Way"

Cooking the Indian Way
Written by: Vijay Madavan
Photographs by: Robert L. & Diane Wolfe
Published by: Lerner Publications Company in Minneapolis, Minnesota in 1985
ISBN: 0-8225-0911-3
Genre(s): Picture Book, Informational Text (Multicultural Work)
Reading Level: Grade 4
Activity Level: Grade 2

Summary: This is a book that details about Indian cooking. It tells a little about the country, provides an introduction about the people of India, and what types of foods are associated with the country. Then, the book teaches readers about common spices used in Indian cooking and how Indians access those spices (whether they are readily available at supermarkets or must be grown at home, etc.) The book then defines several utensils and cooking terms and then proceeds to give several recipes of common Indian cooking.

Response: I really enjoyed how this book gave a good, but succinct introduction to country and culture of India before jumping right into their foods, because it provides readers with the background knowledge on which to base the remaining information about the country’s food.

The photographs in this book serve to show readers how Indians cook and how some of their traditional dishes look. Some of the photographs are full single-page spreads of food dishes and others are simply smaller pictures to represent what they author writes about the country.

Teaching Connections: To use this book in a classroom, a teacher could implement it into her second grade classroom by reading it to her students as part of a larger unit about world foods. To extend their lesson at the end or he book, the teacher could make an Indian recipe with her students and at the end of the unit, the students could vote on which type of restaurant they wanted to visit on a field trip. (The teacher cols also use this book and her unit on cuisine in an even larger unit on nations of the world).

What Students Learn: From this book and the activity students learn about Indian cooking and a little about the country itself.

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