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Martin Yan's Chinatown Cooking: 200 Traditional Recipes from 11 Chinatowns Around the World [Hardcover]

Martin Yan
3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

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Book Description

Oct. 10 2002

When it comes to Chinese cooking, no one has as much culinary talent and encyclopedic knowledge as Martin Yan. That talent and knowledge are presented here in Martin Yan's Chinatown Cooking, a companion volume to his new public television series.

Martin takes you on an unforgettable culinary journey through the gates of eleven Chinatowns around the world. Visit the streets, shops, homes, and restaurants you would never experience without Martin as your guide. From London to San Francisco to Yokohama, Martin introduces shopkeepers, chefs, and home cooks who, for the first time, share their cooking secrets. And as you travel the globe with Martin, you'll discover how Chinese food is different in Macau, Singapore, and Sydney.

Each of the eleven cities is featured along with a list of Martin's favorite restaurants and his favorite dishes and house specialties. Learn Martin's tips for ordering in Chinese restaurants and dim sum parlors. Discover how Chinese food and culture are inextricably linked, as Martin explains the significance of traditional festivals and their accompanying symbolic foods.

Martin Yan's Chinatown Cooking has stunning full-color photography throughout and recipes that make it easy for cooks to create more than two hundred dishes at home, from takeout favorites such as Kung Pao Chicken to restaurant classics such as Steamed Whole Fish with Ginger and Green Onions. Exotic-sounding recipes like Good Fortune Fish Chowder, Flower Drum Crab Baked in the Shell, and Double Harmony Meatballs in Sweet and Sour Sauce are made easy. Don't live near a Chinatown? Try your hand at making your own Roast Duck, Char Siu (barbecued pork), and Gin Doi (sweet sesame balls with duck). Martin makes the exotic familiar by offering tips on unfamiliar ingredients and specific techniques in combination with Chinatown history and culture.

Whether you end up cooking a dish at home or enjoying it in your nearest Chinatown neighborhood, Martin teaches you all you need to know about Chinese cuisine and culture. Travel with Martin Yan through a world of Chinatowns and satisfy your taste for adventure with Martin Yan's Chinatown Cooking.

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Product Details

Product Description

From Amazon

"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.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Yan's Chinatown Cooking Dec 23 2003
Martin Yan is a true pioneer in bringing Chinese cuisine to our living rooms via his TV shows, with his sense of humor, blazing knife skills, and a teaching style that makes him a real pleasure to watch. But Yan also is a prolific writer who has written 10 best selling cookbooks. With an easy-to-follow style, the books is a real treasure for anyone wanting to learn more about Chinese cuisine. And even if you're never been to a Chinatown, this book will help educate you into the many variations of this wonderfuol cuisine.
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.
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4.0 out of 5 stars CHINATOWN FOOD AT HOME! GREAT IDEA! June 4 2003
By A Customer
This is a great cookbook. The recipes are simple, the execution is easy, and the food is yummy. Every recipe we tried did not disappoint. We have cooked clams, eggplant, and fish using recipes in this book, and they all turned out great. We have been to a couple of the Chinatowns from which Mr. Yan harvested these recipes, and when we cook this food, it is like a trip back...without having to buy a plane ticket. We have now stocked our kitchen with hoisin sauce, fish sauce, five spice chinese powder, and other tools and ingredients so we can be ready to cook Chinatown style! If you want fancy Chinese food for a big Chinese wedding, look elsewhere. If you want great tasting Chinese food that comes close to what you would get on Mott Street in NY, then give this book a try!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Resource Dec 5 2002
By A Customer
This ranks as one of Martin Yan's best, with lots of well written recipes. If you're not yet into Chinese cooking, this is a great place to begin. While I have not tried a large number of the recipes yet, and while a few of them require a really extensive Asian grocery for the ingredients, everything so far has been straightforward and delicious. There is also fascinating material about different Chinatowns and Chinese culture scattered randomly throughout the book.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Great meals May 29 2014
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
One of the best purchases I have ever made. The shipping took 6 weeks to get to me instead of the 4 it stated..but I got it and surprised it was an autographed copy from Martin himself and yes it was authentic..hate that it took so long but well worth the wait
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