Martin Yan's Chinatown Cooking: 200 Traditional Recipes from 11 Chinatowns Around the World Hardcover – Oct 10 2002
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"The Chinatowns around the world are amazing communities," writes Martin Yan in his Chinatown Cooking, "filled with history, culture, friendship, and of course food." Naturally, in this companion book to his public television series, Yan focuses on the food--a rich stew from the world's Chinatowns, including, exotically, those in Singapore, Sydney, and Macao. The 200 recipes included reflect a profoundly rich food culture (or cultures, as Chinese cuisine is regionally diverse). Some dishes, like Steamed Whole Fish with Ginger and Green Onions and Sweet-and-Spicy Garlic Shrimp, are beloved classics; others, including Hawaiian Lu'Au Stew, mirror adjustments to local ingredients or tastes; while still others, such as Crispy Seafood and Mango Packets and Steamed King Prawns with Chinese Pesto, are the innovations of modern chefs. But old or new, the dishes are endlessly tempting, and, because of Yan's knowledgeable yet relaxed approach and the clarity of his recipes, completely manageable.
Covering dishes from dim sum, appetizers, and soups, to meat and seafood specialties, rice, noodles, and even desserts like Lucky Treasure Rice Pudding, the book also profiles the Chinatowns, noting their unique qualities (Yokohama's is host to 18 million tourists a year!) while also offering restaurant and dish recommendations (at Macau's Restaurante Chan Chi Mei, order the hanging fish hot pot). Yan also provides illuminating cultural asides such as those about Hakka cuisine or Singapore's Sam Sui women, who were pivotal in the construction of that country's Chinatown. But it's the dishes that make the book a treasure. The book also contains comprehensive food and technique glossaries and color photos throughout. --Arthur Boehm
From Publishers Weekly
Taking the reader on a tour of the world's great Chinatowns, Yan (Martin Yan's Asian Favorites) intersperses the recipes with short histories and photos. He visits 11 Chinatowns in seven countries-including the five Chinatowns of Toronto, New York's 350,000-person Chinatown, and the old Chinatown of Melbourne-and intersperses panels on traditions and philosophies with discussions of the locales and recipes. The detailed and well-explained recipes are sandwiched between a full section on Equipment and Techniques and the Chinese Pantry, and are divided into chapters from Dim Sum, through Seafood and Poultry to Desserts. Yan often draws on inspiration from other well-known chefs such as Sam Choy, who provides several recipes, including the simple and flavorful Lu'au Stew. While some recipes are classics, such as Broccoli Beef and Kung Pao Chicken, others blend traditional dishes with local ingredients for true Asian fusion cooking (Macau's Minchee Minced Pork, is Portuguese-inspired). Helpfully, Yan also adds sidebars containing tips such as "Cracking Crabs" and "Toasting," and makes suggestions for combining "Chinese Food and Wine." The resulting book-glossy and attractively laid out with 200 full-color photos-is as beautiful to look at as it is instructional to the cook.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Top Customer Reviews
This cookbook contains 200 recipes from 11 Chinatown's throughout the world. Recipes are clearly written, and each step is numbered to make it easy to follow. Yan also clearly describes the size of each ingedient. As an example, "large eggs", "unsalted butter". As a result, the recipes produce the intended results with such clear instruction.
The beginning of each recipe includes a short paragraph that provides useful informaiton about the dish preperation, serving suggestions, or recipe variations. Although some recipes contain a large list of ingfredients, that shouldn;t deter you. Yan has done an excellent job of making each dish seem simple to make. And for those of you who are pressed for time, some can be made with just a few ingredients. The book also includes a unique recipe called Char Siu Quesidillas, that combines a Mexican recipe with a Chinese twist. And some recipes have been adapted by Yan for those readers like myself who may not live close to a Chinatown.
I also found the index to be quite helpful, with some dishes listed in multiple locations depending upon it's ingredients. As an example, a fish custard is listed both under eggs, as well as fish.Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
I think Yan's book is great, the food is delicious. My granparents are from mainland China, my family & relatives are liig scattered around Asia, Australia and United States. Read morePublished on May 4 2004
What a disappointment. But I should have known. I have two other Martin Yan cookbooks and only the first one did I get something useful out of. Read morePublished on March 19 2003 by Classic Style Seeker