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Rinku Bhattacharya is a creative Indian cooking teacher and writer, who began teaching Indian cooking almost a decade ago, to share the culture and home flavors of her native India.  Passionate about a conscious lifestyle and seasonal living, Rinku began writing about meshing Indian flavors with local ingredients procured from local markets and her own backyard. Her recipes and experiences are chronicled on her blog Spice Chronicles.

This concept has translated to two cookbooks. The first is a part memoir, part narrative-style cookbook, "The Bengali Five Spice Chronicles," which was the winner of the 2013 Gourmand Awards for Best Indian Cuisine cookbook. In her second cookbook -- "Spices and Seasons, Simple, Sustainable Indian Flavors" -- Rinku offers recipes inspired by the local bounty of the Hudson Valley. The book also offers tips and ideas on creating a green kitchen and reducing your food footprint.

When not in the kitchen, Rinku can be found in local farmer markets, doing spice-based seasonal demos, or on the soccer fields chasing her two lovely children, Deepta and Aadi, with a camera in tow.

Rinku has a doctoral degree in business from Pace University.

Bengali Fried Eggplants, or Begun Bhaja. Credit: Copyright 2015 Rinku Bhattacharya

In the tradition of Bengali Hindus, the auspicious fortnight, or Debipaksha, ends on the full moon night with a prayer to Lakshmi, or Lokkhi

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Main photo: Shakshouka, a hearty meal that is great for breakfast and perfect for a family dinner. Credit: Copyright 2015 Rinku Bhattacharya

When tomato season arrives in August, we are so excited about our salads and tomato sandwiches that we often forget that the season happily

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Nothing says summer like a fresh-fruit ice pop. Freeze pineapple with fresh summer herbs of ginger and lemon verbena for a cold sweet treat that’s light and refreshing. Credit: Copyright 2015 Rinku Bhattacharya

An often underrated gift of summer is the bountiful presence of fresh herbs. At this time of year, like no other, herbs infuse distinct and

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My grandmother made this Kosha Dimer Dalna - egg curry - as a picnic treat for Bengali's New Year. Credit: Copyright Rinku Bhattacharya

In mid-April, the people of Bengal -- a region straddling Bangladesh and parts of India, including my hometown in West Bengal -- celebrate the Bengali New

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By keeping legumes and grains on hand in your pantry, you can create quick, healthy weeknight dinners like this Tomato Rice with Peanuts. Credit: Copyright Rinku Bhattacharya

I am a culinary instructor, a cookbook author, a food blogger. And yet, despite my ability to plan very well all the other aspects

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Sandesh is an Indian version of cheesecake, can be cut into shapes with cookie cutters or formed into balls. Credit: Rinku Bhattacharya

This Valentine's Day, as you look for foods besides oysters and chocolate to woo the object of your affection, consider exploring your spice cabinet. You'll

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Pithey, a sweet dumpling made with ingredients symbolic of the rural bounty -- rice, coconuts and date palm jaggery -- is part of the celebration of the beginning of the harvest season known as Makara Sankranti in India. Credit: Rinku Bhattacharya

Celebrations, festivals and food are prolific on the Indian calendar. With life's hustle and bustle, I tend to weed out those that are difficult

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Thse apple malpoas, crisp fried pancakes , offer an Indian twist to latkes served for Hanukkah. Credit: Rinku Bhattacharya

If celebration food is the determining factor, Hanukkah has to be one of my all-time favorite holidays. I have yet to meet a fried

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