Asma Khan’s paternal culinary pedigree stretches back to the spice-rich “food tradition of the [medieval] Mughal courts,” while the comfort food of her youth (rice-and-milk puddings and custardy egg halwas) stems from the “Bihari [pre-Mughal] Muslim food” of her mother’s side of the family. The two meet in this easy-to-use cookbook reflecting Khan’s heritage and a cross section of Indian cuisine, emphasizing its variety. “There is no generic Indian food,” she advises. Chicken chaap, a stew-like korma “infused with mace and nutmeg,” derives from dishes popular with Muslim “traders from Central Asia . . . and the Middle East” who settled in Bengal, in the east. Rich, slow-cooked kali dal (black lentils with kidney beans) is a hearty dish from the Punjab, up north. An introductory section offers tips on techniques and spices essential to preparing these and other historic family favorites.