This slaw in particular comes from her cookbook chapter inspired by South Indian cuisine, specifically a dish called koshumbri. Though Naik is Maharashtrian, she told us that she grew up speaking Kannada—a Southern Indian language from Karnataka, which shares a border with Maharashtra. Because of the overlap, she includes a second chapter of recipes inspired by Southern India, including this one. But what is koshumbri?
“It basically means a side salad or a salad condiment,” she explained, “The idea behind it is to compliment the other dishes on your plate. It’s really all about the balance of textures. It should always be in the colder or room temp side, it should always include fresh produce.”
The other thing it includes is tempered spices, or spices that are toasted and bloomed in hot oil, to bring out their flavor and aroma. In this case, the hot oil is poured over the fresh apples.
Naik also shared some advice for dishes to enjoy with this side: “If I were to think about this in the scope of holidays, this goes really well with any type of rice or risotto dish,” she suggests. Because of its freshness and spice-forward flavors, the slaw is a natural complement to a starchier dish. “Traditionally we will eat it on the side of rice dishes, alongside vegetable dishes, or with rosti or chapati.”
“Weirdly,” she added, “It also goes really well with a cornbread.”