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Outside India Indian food is popular the world over, from Tokyo to Telford and from Canberra to California. For centuries India has produced an unusually diverse cuisine. The food of the 17 states that make up India is as varied as the food of the countries of Europe. It was in India that the Aryan cultural ethos flowered, bringing to every area of human activity, including food and dietetics, a spiritual and moral dimension. It was on Indian soil that immigrants from many different cultures and traditions came together - Persians, Muslims, and Europeans - creating a food culture which, enlivened by distinctive regional nuances, is among the greatest in the world. This Dictionary provides, in A-Z format, a huge amount of information on the food, the food culture, recipes, and cuisine of India. It covers areas such as history, literature, botany, genetics, and archaeology and places Indian food in time and context. The country's oldest accounts in Sanskrit, Pali, Tamil, and Kannada, have been drawn upon extensively, as have the writings of visitors to India. Details covered include migration of food plants from the New World to India through European influences and their rapid integration into Indian cuisine. The text is extensively cross-referenced allowing readers to browse entries. In addition to the A-Z text the book contains extra material such as an index of authors, literary works, and historical people, indexes of Indian words and Latin names, and a list of headwords with page numbers.