If anyone can be called the matriarch of Houston's Indian food scene, it's Anita Jaisinghani. She oversees Indika—an upscale restaurant awash with multi-regional influences—as well as Pondicheri, a more casual spot that doubles as a breakfast joint and bakery, where you can munch on pistachio-cardamom cookies. She views Houston as an ideal spot for her cuisine, in no small part because of its heat, which is similar to New Delhi's: "What I love about Houston that others don't is the weather. It reminds me of home," she remarked on the city's official visitors site. Of course, the Texan fondness for testing your tongue's mettle against a wallop of spice also helps her business, as well as many others.