2/2/10: After several months' hiatus, I've just returned to this book, and I've been won over anew by the incredible variety of flavors, techniques, and styles included in it. After making a dozen or so of the recipes, I felt confident enough to throw together a curry without instruction. The garam masalas are amazing (though there are still ingredients like white poppy seeds I've yet to encounter).9/08: I've tried about 10 recipes so far and they've all been mighty tasty. Each recipe starts with a paragraph or two of history or background, and most are fairly simple. There's a glossary of ingredients as well as a shopping cheat sheet that lists the names of ingredients in English & Hindi and which you'll need to seek out an Indian grocer for. The spice levels vary, but only a few have been more than what I've had ordering "medium" in a restaurant.