Figure 1 Publishing

Food + Drink

My Thali

A Simple Indian Kitchen

Joe Thottungal with Anne DesBrisay

The Coconut Lagoon chef brings the vibrant everyday flavours of South India to home kitchens.

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As an Indian chef, the tradition of thali dominates my life. It is the way I eat at home, it is the way I celebrate life’s big events, and it is the style of cooking we offer at my second Ottawa restaurant, Thali.

—Joe Thottungal, Introduction

Book Description

Like a tagine or casserole, a thali describes not only a type of kitchenware, but a type of meal. A thali is constructed of many small dishes served on a platter that harmonize through contrasting textures, visual appeal, complimentary spices, and sheer deliciousness. Once reserved for special occasions, this traditional way of eating is now a popular way of dining at home.

In My Thali, award-winning chef and author Joe Thottungal shares his favorite home-cooked recipes and stories from his homeland of Kerala, connecting past and present in the world of Indian cooking today. This exploration of food heritage features a collection of 85 signature recipes—from simple raitas to nourishing dals and fragrant curries—that can be easily re-created at home, using accessible ingredients and everyday cooking equipment, and without any compromise to flavor or authenticity. Each recipe can be enjoyed on its own or joined together to compose a complete and balanced meal; suggested menus are included for constructing these “feasts on a plate.”

My Thali celebrates the South Indian cooking and the joys of thalis, both simple and homey, and grand and glorious.



My Thali is a gorgeous collection of South Indian cooking . . . ”

VITA Daily

Daily Dish

CTV Ottawa Morning Live

CTV News Ottawa Part 1

CTV News Ottawa Part 2

Daytime Ottawa

“Joe Thottungal’s My Thali transports the reader through an adventure for the senses. This book is a journey. The stunning photographs and collected recipes immerse readers in the fragrances and the tastes that these recipes represent.”

Apt 613

Loan Stars Canadian Top 10 List

My Thali: Ottawa Chef Joe Thottungal’s meals of many parts”

The National Post

“Cook This: Three recipes from My Thali” 

The National Post



“Joe Thottungal is one of my greatest philanthropic culinary heroes.”
–Margaret Dickenson, award-winning cookbook author

“Chef Joe remains a symbol of compassion and generosity in our community.”
–Jim Watson, Mayor of Ottawa

“[Joe] has always been making dynamite South Indian food: it just took some of us awhile to catch up.”
–Paul Wells, Maclean’s Magazine


  • Hardcover
  • 8 × 9.5 inches
  • 192 pages
  • 978-1-77327-195-8
  • $38.95 CDN / $32.95 USD
  • March 2023