Ashtanga Yoga Bangkok

Nigel was involved in the publication of the book, Mysore Style Cooking

For several years Nigel encouraged his friend in Mysore, Sandyha, to write down her very special South Indian vegetarian recipes. His encouragement  and involvement resulted in the recently published Mysore Style Cooking.

Nigel wrote the first draught of the book in 2009. He gave All rights and credit to Sandyha as the creator of the recipes and is only directly credited for the introduction to the final edition.

Nigel’s introduction, as featured in the book

Sandyha is a wonderful lady and a personal hero of mine – I must have eaten at her house literally hundreds of times, over the years. She continues to provide a much needed oasis of flavor and health in Mysore.

I first started eating lunch at Sandyha’s in 2002 or 2003 I think, on my first visit to Mysore to practice at the then-called Ashtanga Yoga Research Institute with Guruji and Sharath.  Sandyha offered a freshly made buffet of exquisite Southern Indian dishes with the essential difference that they were not over spiced, they were not oily, and yet they were absolutely delicious. Needless to say I quickly became a fan and would eat my lunch there as often as possible.

I started urging Sandyha to write down her recipes for me on another early visit to Mysore. She showed me a few random photo copied pages of recipes she had and allowed me to stand in her kitchen one lunch time to scribble down as best as I could a few others. I was on a bit of a raw food kick at the time and started making some of Sandyha’s salads with a fair degree of success.

Then last year, 2009, I offered to write Sandyha’s cook book. She had concerns; her English was not good enough, who would take the pictures, who would organize the printing etc. We came to an agreement that if she could provide me with the recipes, written out by hand, I would do the rest. She spent many a late night laboring over the pages and I dutifully typed then up, with my friend Odin and I taking the pictures. I thought I would engage a local Mysore printer. However, when I met up with some printers I realized I was lost in a world I knew nothing about.

My Mysore trip was over and it was time to return home. I hadn’t finished typing up all the recipes, so I resolved to finish the job at home and broach the worrisome subject of the printing stuff at a later date. Out of the blue, Joseph Dunham got in touch to tell me that another student and Sanydha fan, Sandra Ramacher, a publisher from Australia, wanted to take over the project. It was with a mixture of relief and a little sadness that I passed over the project to Sandra.

Sandyha’s cook book is so needed in this world of awful, poisonous food and I hope that with this its publication her fame will spread and her unique and wondrous recipes will be replicated in kitchens all over the World.

Mysore Style Cooking

Some of the original draft and layout of Sandyha’s book