Tarla Dalal (June 1936 – 6 November 2013) was an Indian food writer, chef, cookbook author and host of cooking shows. Her first cook book, The Pleasures of Vegetarian Cooking, was published in 1974. Since then she wrote over 100 books and sold more than 3 million books. She also ran the largest Indian food web site, and published a bi-monthly magazine, Cooking & More. Her cooking shows included The Tarla Dalal Show and Cook It Up With Tarla Dalal.
Though she wrote about many cuisines and healthy cooking, she specialized in Indian cuisine, particularly Gujarati cuisine. She was awarded the Padma Shri by Government of India in 2007. She was also awarded Women of the Year by Indian Merchants’ Chamber in 2005.
She died on 6 November 2013 following a heart attack.
She was born and brought up in Pune in a Marathi Brahmin family, India. She married Nalin Dalal in 1960 and moved to Bombay (now Mumbai) after the marriage.
Dalal started conducting cooking classes from her home in 1966, which led to the publication of her first cook book, The Pleasures of Vegetarian Cooking in 1974. The book has sold over 1,500,000 copies. Over time, her popularity grew and she became a household name, with housewives and chefs swearing by her recipes. Tarla Dalal is credited with introducing and popularising foreign cuisines to the masses.
She made vegetarian versions of a lot of non-vegetarian recipes from foreign lands. She revolutionised the cooking industry and is the most sold cookbook author in India. Her books have been translated into languages like Hindi, Gujarati, Marathi, Bengali, Dutch and Russian. She also published cooking magazines. In 2007 she started her ‘Total Health Series’ cookbook series.
Her range of ready-to-cook mixes, Tarla Dalal Mixes, was acquired by International Bestfoods Ltd. in 2000.
Tarla Dalal husband, who died in 2005, had three children. As of 2005 she lived in an apartment on Napean Sea Road in South Mumbai. Dalal died at her residence on 6 November 2013 following a heart attack.