Know the Cooking Legend of India, the Talented Tarla Dalal

Tarla Dalal

Tarla Dalal was one of the most celebrated chefs in India and hosted her own cooking show penning best-selling cookery books on Indian food! In total, she has written around 170 titles in languages like Gujarati, Marathi, Hindi, Bengali and even Russian and Dutch. The total sales of her titles cross 4 million copies. Here we present to you the story of Tarla Dalal and her passion for cooking and teaching its intricacies that she aspired to impart around the country and the world!

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Personal Life 

Born and brought up in Pune, Maharashtra, she got married to Nalin Dalal in 1960 and relocated to Mumbai. She started her career in cooking from 1966 onwards when she began conducting classes at home. This eventually led to her first book publication, “The pleasures of Vegetarian cooking”, in 1974, which was a huge success as it sold over 1.5 million copies.

Tarla Dalal
Image Source: Ruchi Shah

Tarla Dalal was a mother to three, Sanjay, Deepak and Renu. Her husband, Nalin Dalal died in 2005. She died on November 06, 2013, due to a heart attack.


The first milestone of Tarla Dalal’s success was her book titled, “The Pleasures of Vegetarian Cooking”. With time, her popularity eventually grew and she became a common name in every Indian household. She is known for introducing and popularizing foreign cuisines to the Indian masses. She also attempted to make vegetarian versions of non-vegetarian recipes from foreign lands. There was a time when people said, “If you want to get your daughter married, send her to Mrs. Dalal’s classes”.

Courtesy: BuzzFeed

Her own cookery show, “Cook it Up with Tarla Dalal” was weekly aired on Sony Entertainment for 3 years at a stretch. The show was seen all-over South-East Asia, UK, US and even the Gulf.


Since the publication of the first book of Tarla Dalal, she has written over 100 books and sold more than 3 million copies. “Cooking & more” is a bi-monthly magazine which used to be published by her. She also has her own Indian food website.

In 2005, the Indian Merchants’ Chamber awarded her with the “Women of the Year” award. The Chamber recognized that an Indian woman with a family, through her entrepreneurial skill and tremendous efforts, has created a legacy for Indian women to follow. Her skills moved beyond a woman’s traditional role of cooking and brought it to millions of people worldwide through her well written and highly appreciated books on cookery.

Tarla Dalal was honoured with the Padma Shri on January 26, 2007, by President APJ Abdul Kalam in cooking. This felicitation took place at Rashtrapati Bhawan. What must be noted here is that she was the first Indian to be awarded in this category.

5 Famous Cookery Books By Tarla Dalal

Listed below are five famous cookery books of Tarla Dalal:

  1. Sizzlers & Barbeques – Buy now at Buy Sizzlers & Barbeques: 1 (Total Health Series) Book Online at Low Prices in India | Sizzlers & Barbeques: 1 (Total Health Series) Reviews & Ratings –
  2. The Pleasures of Vegetarian Cooking – Buy now at Buy The Pleasures Of Vegetarian Cooking Book Online at Low Prices in India | The Pleasures Of Vegetarian Cooking Reviews & Ratings –
  3. Atithya – Hindi – Buy now at Buy Aatithya – Hindi Book Online at Low Prices in India | Aatithya – Hindi Reviews & Ratings –
  4. Microwave Desi Khana – Buy now at Buy Microwave Desi Khana Part – 2 (English) Book Online at Low Prices in India | Microwave Desi Khana Part – 2 (English) Reviews & Ratings –
  5. Mocktails and Snacks – Buy now at Buy Mocktails and Snacks: 1 Book Online at Low Prices in India | Mocktails and Snacks: 1 Reviews & Ratings –

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[Bonus] Famous Recipes by Tarla Dalal

We have listed below Tarla Dalal’s three easy and famous recipes: 

Spicy Vegetable Pulao

This unique dish by Tarla Dalal is a unique blend of spices that are used everyday in the kitchen and fresh vegetables. Yet, the resultant dish is one of its kind in itself. Find the detailed recipes here :

Source: YouTube

Mexican Bhel 

This is one of the easiest and quick recipes by Tarla Dalal. This recipe can be prepared in not much time and served with different sauces. Find the recipe here:

Source: YouTube

Burrito Bowl

Although the name might seem to elaborate, the recipe is a very quick and easy one. The Burrito Bowl recipe is one of Tarla Dalal’s most famous ones. Check out the full recipe here :

Source: YouTube

Burmese Khow Suey

This dish is a blend of vegetables, noodles, spices, coconut and a well-garnished blend of fried onion, garlic and spring onions. What makes this dish different from the other recipes is its ingredients list and how easily it can be prepared. Check out the full recipe here :

Source: YouTube

So, this was all about the Indian cooking legend, Tarla Dalal. Her story, for sure, inspires every Indian woman. It sets an example that even today, women can achieve whatever they wish for with the correct support. Inspired by her story? For more such interesting content, stay tuned to Leverage Edu!

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  1. She is love I really love Tarla ma’am’s recipe and am a big big fan of her.Whenever I feel like cooking I follow her recipes and its all because of her that I end up making beautiful recipes.

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