But my mom has always been curious about food. As a kid, she spent her afternoons perched on her grandmother’s kitchen counter, watching her grind spices and roll out fresh rotis. When she came to the U.S., she synthesized those childhood memories, lessons from her favorite television shows and travels, and her daughters’ very American tastes into a cuisine all her own. She made pizza with roti bread, sandwiches crusted in curry leaves, saag paneer with the paneer swapped out for feta cubes. As a food writer who’s eaten my way through many, many restaurants, I can still say I’ve never tasted cooking as creative and unique as hers.