Tomatoes for Neela (Hardcover)
The magical combination of Padma’s words and Juana’s illustrations wraps the reader in the smells and tastes of a kitchen enveloped in the love of generations, passing family, culture and tradition through recipes and story. From the beautiful clicking noise of the bangles on Amma’s wrists as she chops vegetables and shakes spices to the delicious smell of warm tomatoes and roasted garlic, prepare to have every sense saturated with goodness. The recipes at the end and the facts about tomatoes and the farmworkers whose hard work brings this bounty to our tables make this a treasure of teaching possibilities as well. My kids are adults now, but I promise you, we’ll be cooking up some Chutney and tomato sauce if I see them at the end of summer. If not, I’ll send jars with stories and love. Do not miss this book.— Linda
Padma Lakshmi, bestselling author and host of Bravo's Top Chef and Hulu's Taste the Nation, and Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator Juana Martinez-Neal team up in this celebration of food and family.
“Some of my fondest memories from childhood are of cooking with the women in my family. It is the foundation for all I have spent my life working on.” –Padma Lakshmi
Neela loves cooking with her amma and writing down the recipes in her notebook. It makes her feel closer to her paati who lives far away in India. On Saturdays, Neela and Amma go to the green market and today they are buying tomatoes to make Paati's famous sauce. But first, Neela needs to learn about all the different kinds of tomatoes they can pick from. And as Neela and Amma cook together, they find a way for Paati to share in both the love and the flavors of the day.
Bestselling author and host of Bravo's Top Chef and Hulu's Taste the Nation Padma Lakshmi takes young readers on an intergenerational journey full of delicious flavors and fun food facts that celebrates a family's treasured recipes. And Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator Juana Martinez-Neal brings this circle of women to life with vivid detail and warmth. Tomatoes for Neela lovingly affirms how we can connect to other cultures, as well as to our own, through food.
About the Author
Padma Lakshmi is the creator and host of Hulu's Taste the Nation and host and executive producer of the Emmy-winning Bravo series Top Chef. She is the bestselling author of two cookbooks, the Encyclopedia of Spices and Herbs, as
well as her memoir Love, Loss, and What We Ate. Lakshmi is also cofounder of the Endometriosis Foundation of America, an artist ambassador for the ACLU, and a Goodwill Ambassador for the United Nations. She lives in New York City with her daughter. Her favorite kind of tomato is a San Marzano.
Juana Martinez-Neal is the winner of the Pura Belpré Illustrator Award for La Princesa and the Pea by Susan Middleton Elya and the Caldecott Honor Award for Alma and How She Got Her Name, which she also wrote. Originally from Lima, Peru, she lives with her husband and three children in Arizona where she cooks with lots of Roma tomatoes.
“The sweet, lushly illustrated tale succeeds in showing the importance of food as connection within one Indian American family.” –Publishers Weekly
“Martinez-Neal’s warmly textured, beautifully detailed illustrations are the perfect celebration of intergenerational love.” –Kirkus Reviews
“Exquisite illustrations by Caldecott Honor Book author-illustrator Martinez-Neal make this title one that belongs front and center on shelves everywhere.” --Booklist
"The intergenerational warmth and pleasure in cooking together are palpable. Part informational, part family story, this attractive book will speak to young kitchen helpers and those with loved ones in far-off places.” –School Library Journal