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Sichuan Cookery

4.26  ·  Rating Details ·  999 Ratings  ·  42 Reviews
Sichuan food is one of the great unknown cuisines of the world, famous in Chinese history and legendary for its extraordinary variety and richness. Chinese people say that China is the place for food, but Sichuan is the place for flavour, and local gourmets claim the region boasts 5000 different dishes. This book includes sections on the history of Sichuan cooking, the 23 ...more
Paperback, 376 pages
Published December 4th 2003 by Penguin (first published June 28th 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jenny (Reading Envy)
Amazing follow-up to Shark's Fin And Sichuan Pepper: A Sweet-Sour Memoir of Eating in China, with even more stories and food history of the Sichuan province. This is far more of a cookbook than the memoir she wrote before this.

Unfortunately for me, most Sichuan dishes involve pork. I don't eat pork. I have a few marked to try - dan dan noodles, fish-fragrant eggplant, and fish-fragrant bean curd. I will need to go to a well-stocked Chinese/Asian market first.

I'd recommend this book to any advent
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Schmusepferdchen
Dec 28, 2015 Schmusepferdchen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
First of all, for me the intention behind reading a cookbook is to learn how to cook.

Land of plenty does NOT teach you that. I've expected that because it is often empathised that Mrs. Dunlop as first westerner made a training as a cook.
Good for her. What she does is giving you recipes and the story how she learned them.
In this respect this book (and the one about Hunan kitchen) is good. If you are lloking for recipes there are other books with authentic recipes, too. If you are looking for meth
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Cissa
Mar 11, 2016 Cissa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
These recipes are not the last word in cooking Sichuan dishes here in the USA... but they are a pretty good intro to such.

I love Dunlop's writing, and have read all her books. Occasionally, this helps inform the way I interpret her recipes.

My husband and I love Sichuan dishes, and are currently on a Quest to make our ultimate hot and sour soup. Dunlop's recipe is not our ultimate as written, but it does include several elements that the master recipe will need to incorporate!

Also, I am very intr
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Pauline
This is a great cookbook. The recipes are authentic and turn out just like they should...as long as you have the right ingredients.

After spending time in China and loving the food, it is great to have this book to rely on when my cravings for China come and they do come often.
Bookshop
Jul 29, 2007 Bookshop rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: delicious-reads
This is an old book. It was written in 2001 but it is such a treasure on Sichuan culinary art.

The book starts with a hefty discussion on Sichuan culture and its kitchen: from the basic cutting skills to cooking methods. Then comes the recipes divided into types of food. It closes with appendices on the main flavours from Sichuan, 23 basic flavours of Sichuan, and 56 methods of cooking Sichuan dishes.

The section on 23 flavours of Sichuan is interesting. When we hear 'Sichuan food', we think of
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David
Jun 17, 2007 David rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Chinese-food deprived dwellers of the Southern United States, intermediate wok dabblers
I've been attempting to self-teach myself to cook Chinese cuisine at home over the past couple of years. I have fumbled my way through an endless variety of stir fries, recipe'd or improvised. In the process, I've picked up some passable wok skills and basic knowledge of the components that make Chinese food work.

This book is impressively and lyrically written by a British white woman who lived and studied in Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan. She accompanies her recipes with historical or persona
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Angelar
Aug 25, 2007 Angelar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes less-Americanized Chinese food
Shelves: vittles
I pretty much want to marry Fuschia Dunlop. She's fluent in Mandarin (plus regional dialects!), writes fantastically appetizing, clear recipes (complete with buckets of cultural context), and even includes Chinese characters and Pinyin for each recipe's name (and each ingredient, each cooking method, &c.). Vegetarian recipes, while still a minority, are plentiful and don't seem like the weakling little brothers of the meat recipes, as so often is the case in cookbooks written by omnivores.

Th
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J.
Nov 06, 2008 J. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: ... wok-it scientists ...
Emphasis on the "authentic", which can be used with certainty since Ms Dunlop trained in Szechuan Province in China. What the average New Yorker might know as west-side-szechuan takeout manages to be fairly different in its Original form.

Hot, salty, sweet, deep, smoky, multi-layered -- all factors in the palette presented here, and treated in a practical, informative way. Good discussion of tools, prep, ingredients and their properties, and how to cope with cooking Szechuan in a western context
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Irvin Sha
Mar 07, 2011 Irvin Sha rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a big fan of food from Sichuan, I looked for a while for a decent book that would show me how to actually cook some of the food. For the most part, I kept on running into problems with authenticity/credibility. The recipes that I would see just didn't look right. I mean, they'd have carrots and celery in them, which seems just plain wrong.

This book is totally legit. I realize the author is British, but she apparently spent years in Sichuan learning how to cook. And everything comes out just a
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Christina
Apr 02, 2008 Christina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Asian food lovers
A friend who taught English with me in China recommended this gem to me. Since I taught English and lived in Sichuan Province for a year, I'm so grateful to have this guide to how to reproduce the amazing food in my kitchen here in the U.S. Dunlop gives some of my favorite recipes (try the Pockmarked Mother Chen's Tofu, the Twice-Cooked Pork, and the Dry-Fried Green Beans) and makes allowances for Western kitchens. It even includes several hotpot recipes, which I'm looking forward to trying out ...more
Kayanna
May 14, 2010 Kayanna rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A fantastic English-language book for Sichuanese dishes. It covers many of the major Sichuanese dishes in an authentic way (she went to culinary school in Chengdu). In addition, it makes recommendations for adaptations to recipes based on what you'd find in Asian grocery stores in the West.

It translates Sichuanese cooking not only into English but into Western cooking terminology, complete with a description of ingredients in the front. It even tells you how to make your own Sichuanese stock.

Sim
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Carrie
Jan 25, 2012 Carrie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Everything I have made from this book is delicious and seems so authentic based on the foods I tasted (and now miss) during my 4 months living in China. The recipes are super easy to make, and all of the ethnic ingredients can be found at Ranch 99. There is also a very interesting history of Sichuan cooking included, and each recipe includes some historical tidbits. Easily the best cookbook I have ever used.
Denise
Feb 17, 2014 Denise rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: cookbooks
Rather lean on photographs, but a good sampling of Chinese restaurant favorites (most Chinese food in America is heavily Sichuan) with relatively clear instructions. Warning that it does call for many key ingredients that will be hard for Americans to find in conventional grocery stores, but if you have access to a good Chinese grocer and are looking to buy some of those exciting mystery ingredients, you will like this.
James Eckman
There's some duplication between this and Every Grain Of Rice: Simple Chinese Home Cooking as well as far fewer photos, a serious lack are pictures of the chopping process. I also have a new pet peeve, recipes not included in the table of contents which makes them difficult to find and making it hard to compare to her other books.
Kady
Jun 13, 2007 Kady rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes spicy or Chinese food
Shelves: cookbooks
Best Chinese/Sichuan cookbook eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeever!

Easy to read, lots of interesting facts/stories, and everything's delicious. She even has an amazing glossary, the different tastes of Sichuan explained, and lots of Chinese to learn.

This is a MUST buy and it's cheap. I can't wait to buy her new one.
Amber
Aug 11, 2008 Amber rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have tried MANY MANY cookbooks but they all failed to teach me how to make anything that tastes remotely similar to authentic Chinese food.

With the help of this book (and the Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook), I have finally learned how to cook food that even scored compliments from my Chinese father-in-law. I loved this cookbook!
Brandon Fulk
Jun 30, 2016 Brandon Fulk rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love this book! Favorite since Irene Kuo's "Key to Chinese Cooking". Only downfall would be the fact that not every recipe has pictures but after cooking her twice cooked pork and homestyle tofu recipes, I have to say its content more than makes up for this.

The descriptions of the different flavor profiles is also very helpful.
Cia
Feb 08, 2009 Cia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Has got to be one of the most useful cookbooks!

Click here for one recipe I tried :)
Jason Pastorius
Mar 05, 2013 Jason Pastorius rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting, well-thought cookbook with a good bit of background and personal interest bits. Most of the recipes so far have yielded excellent food. I have never been to China but am relying on the more authentic Sichuan food I've sampled around the world.
Lauren
Apr 01, 2010 Lauren rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is only purely Chinese cookbook I've had any success with, and so far every recipe we've tried has been excellent. Betweeen LOP and some bits and pieces from other sources, I'm confident that I can produce better Chinese food than 85% of restaurants in the US. Seriously!
Travis
Dec 05, 2008 Travis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This cookbook is incredible! It teaches how to cook authentic, amazing food and it teaches you a lot about Chinese culture as well. Fuchsia Dunlop is a tremendous writer -- meticulous, thorough, and engaging.
Mike Histand
Jan 19, 2016 Mike Histand rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the most authentic recipe book for the CA westerner that I have run across. It contains far more than I can handle, but allows focus as desired by the reader. I am going to experiment with lotus root.
Cath Ferla
Jan 02, 2016 Cath Ferla rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My all time favourite cookbook for its recipes and history. This is the go-to resource for anybody interested in learning more about Sichuan food and how to cook your favourite Sichuan recipes at home.
Paul Morris
A readable cookbook with recipes but also cultural insights into Sichuan Province. Dunlop studied culinary arts in Chengdu and places the recipes within the history and culture of the area.
Amelia
Apr 14, 2009 Amelia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is an awesome cookbook. I lived in Sichuan for about 5 months, and this enabled me to re-create, and in some cases improve on, many of my favorite foods from there.
Roderick Beck
Aug 21, 2012 Roderick Beck is currently reading it  ·  review of another edition
An interesting cookbook. One learns the food that is eaten in the different regions of China, instead of the westernized styles one eats normally in the west (I think).
Liz
Sep 16, 2010 Liz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: wishlist
Ms. Dunlop is a new favorite - her passion for the region's food definitely comes through in her writing. Looking forward to reading her other books!
Jessie
Dec 31, 2007 Jessie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is the only Chinese cookbook that I have found that helps me make food that tastes like things I ate in China.
Rob
Mar 24, 2013 Rob rated it it was amazing
Dunlop is a beautiful writer. Her recipes work, though I prefer the metric, mass measurements in the UK editions of her books.
Margaret
Mar 18, 2013 Margaret rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Great explanations of everything, light on the pictures. For less in-depth coverage and quicker application, see Every Grain of Rice.
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Fuchsia Dunlop is a cook and food-writer specialising in Chinese cuisine. She is the author of Shark’s Fin and Sichuan Pepper: A Sweet-Sour Memoir of Eating in China, an account of her adventures in exploring Chinese food culture, and two critically-acclaimed Chinese cookery books, Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook, and Sichuan Cookery (published in the US as Land of Plenty).

Fuchsia writes for public
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