Appetizers 14: Sugar Cake(糖餅)

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Drench wheat flour with sugar water. Heat the oil up in a wok and place it in using chopsticks, then shape them into the form of a bing (cake). These are known as “soft wok bing”. It is a Hangzhou recipe. 糖餅糖水溲麵,起油鍋令熱,用箸夾入其作成餅形者,號軟鍋餅。杭州法也。 Notes: This is a short recipe, but as with many of them in … Continue reading Appetizers 14: Sugar Cake(糖餅)

Appetizers 13: Garlic Chive Pastries (韭合)

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Chop garlic chives finely, mix with pork, and add seasonings.1 Wrap it in a flatten piece of dough, and sear in hot oil. The crisper the dough is the better. 韭合2韭菜切末拌肉,加作料,麵皮包之,入油灼之。麵內加酥更妙。 Notes: 1Modern garlic chive pastries (juicaihezi 韭菜盒子) are usually filled with garlic chives and egg, sometimes padded bean starch vermicelli. Ones with meat are … Continue reading Appetizers 13: Garlic Chive Pastries (韭合)

Appetizers 12: Pork Wonton (肉餛飩)

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Wontons are made in the same manner as jiao. 肉餛飩作餛飩與餃同。 Note: While this one sentence on wontons seems almost dismissive, it actually says quite a bit. By equating wontons to the other Chinese dumpling, the jiaozi, it tell you not only about what the wontons were like in Yuan Mei's time and region, but also … Continue reading Appetizers 12: Pork Wonton (肉餛飩)

Your Favourite Chinese Foods Are Muslim

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A few months ago I was interviewed by the SCMP on the origins of Chinese crullers/doughnuts (油條, youtiao). In the article, Dr. Miranda Brown, Dr. Gene Anderson, and I spoke about how this fried delight was in fact one of several fried pastries introduced to China from the "far-away western lands" of the Persians, Arabs, … Continue reading Your Favourite Chinese Foods Are Muslim

Appetizers 11: “Dianbuleng” (顛不棱)

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Flatten pieces of dough, fill their insides with pork, then steam them. The way to make these well is completely dependent on how the filling is prepared. Quite simply, the pork has to be tender, with any tendons removed, and then seasoned well. I've been to Guangdong and ate the dianbuleng at Guanzhentai, which were … Continue reading Appetizers 11: “Dianbuleng” (顛不棱)

Appetizers 10: Dumpling Mice (麵老鼠)

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Mix hot water with flour. Wait for the chicken extract to boil, then use chopsticks to pinch and pick off the dough into pieces of varying size.1 Add fresh vegetable stems2 for a unique and flavoursome dish. 麵老鼠以熱水和麵,俟雞汁滾時,以箸夾入,不分大小,加活菜心,別有風味。 Notes: 1This seems to be a coarser version of bomian (柭麵) or boyu'er (柭魚兒), where the dough … Continue reading Appetizers 10: Dumpling Mice (麵老鼠)

Appetizers 9: Song Bing (松餅)

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The Jiaomenfang store at Lotus bridge of Nanjing makes the best. 松餅1南京蓮花橋教門方店最精。 Notes: 1The characters songbing (松餅) literally means "pine bing" or "pine pastry", which makes little if any sense. Most likely the use of the “pine” character is a corruption or simplification of song (鬆), which when used in as songbing (鬆餅), means "simply … Continue reading Appetizers 9: Song Bing (松餅)

We won at the 25th Gourmand World Cookbook Awards!

I've only recently found out that my second book, The Way of Eating, won "Best in the World" in the Special Awards category at the 25th Gourmand International Cookbook Awards 2020!  This is a tremendous honour for the entire team, so I also want to congratulate everyone at Berkshire Publishing, as well as Professors Gene … Continue reading We won at the 25th Gourmand World Cookbook Awards!