Nidhi Jalan is a ceramic artist turned chef and entrepreneur, and an avid scuba diver and fitness junkie to boot. When she moved to New York from Kolkata, India, she found herself missing homestyle Indian food. Growing up in India she often ate in the homes of her friends and extended family, which introduced her to foods and dishes from different parts of country and helped develop her passion for regional Indian cuisine. Her love of homestyle cooking, healthy eating and good nutrition eventually led her to launch Masala Mama, a Brooklyn-based artisanal food company. In the summer of 2021 she opened a pop-up restaurant in Brooklyn to much acclaim and love from the community.
While Nidhi believes that spices are the foundation of Indian food, her approach is to “cook with a light hand”, meaning, to use spices judiciously. Getting the balance of spices right is key to good Indian food, and less, she believes, is often more. She loves to experiment with new dishes at her home in Brooklyn and share that knowledge by developing recipes for FoodNetwork.com. She also partners with Wellness In The Schools and Edible Schoolyard, organizations that welcome kids into the kitchen to promote healthy eating habits and foster a life-long love of fun with food.