A Show of Hands

The greatest tool for any cook is her own hands. I have been reading cookbooks for years–ever since I learned to read, in fact. Before that, I used to drag down my mother’s copy of The New Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook and her Betty Crocker’s Picture Cookbook, and look at the pictures. They were […]

Chinese Fast Food

There are some days when I get involved in writing, working or gardening, and I forget that I have to cook dinner until the sun is going down, my stomach is growling and Zak is about to perish from lack of caloric intake. In these times, I am glad that we have a Chinese deli […]

Soup to Raise the Dead

Here is the pot of hot and sour soup just after being thickened with eggs and a thin slurry of cornstarch. I don’t like the soup overly thick and gloppy so I use a minimum of cornstarch in it. Shiksa Ball Soup may have marvelous healing powers, but it does lack the ability to raise […]

The Chinese Cookbook Project IV: From the Best Chinese Restaurant in the World

One of the few cookbooks featuring the cuisine of Hunan province, Henry Chung’s Hunan Style Chinese Cookbook is sadly out of print. In 1974, Tony Hiss, a staff writer for The New Yorker Magazine, dubbed Henry’s Hunan Restaurant on Kearny Street in San Francisco’s Chinatown, “the best Chinese restaurant in the world.” Thirty-two years later, […]

It Isn’t Just About the Crunch

Fresh water chestnuts on a plate with gai lan, or Chinese flowering broccoli. If you haven’t figured it out by now, I love shopping in Asian markets, particularly ones with well-stocked produce sections. Not only do they have innumerable types and varieties of greens for sale, but they also have many other delicious vegetables which […]

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