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The Cultural Revolution Cookbook Paperback – December 1, 2011


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The Cultural Revolution Cookbook + Chinese Posters: Art from the Great Proletarian Cultural Revolution
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 168 pages
  • Publisher: Earnshaw Books (December 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 9881998468
  • ISBN-13: 978-9881998460
  • Product Dimensions: 9.7 x 9.8 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #218,399 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A beautifully illustrated cookbook that documents the indomitable spirit of a people whose defining greeting is still 'Have you eaten yet?' Adorned with period posters and trivia that captures the absurdity of the time . . . the 80 homely recipes inspire with their simplicity and no-nonsense prose." —Daven Wu, TIME


"The book's use of propaganda posters from the period links the recipes and the politics in a wonderfully entertaining way." —Judith Shapiro, author, Mao's War Against Nature


"The book is by turns touching, funny and bemusing; the food triumphs over all." —Christian Murck, President of the American Chamber of Commerce in China


"A scrumptious treat in every way. Peppered with delectable and little-known historical anecdotes, luscious food photography, and colorful, eye-pleasing Chinese socialist realist art, the book is a delight simply to flip through." —Ted Plafker, author, Doing Business in China


"Gong and Seligman serve up both good food and history in an easily digestible format." —John Frisbie, President of the U.S.-China Business Council


"This is a beautifully written book that you will savor both for its thoughtful reflections on history and its great recipes." —John L. Holden, former President of The National Committee on U.S.-China Relations


"The Cultural Revolution Cookbook mixes amusing anecdotes, engaging stories and sumptuous recipes to bring to life revolutionary China's culinary history. The authors' unique expertise in Chinese history, society and culture make this cookbook entertaining, informative and indispensable for any kitchen." —Chris Billing, former Bureau Chief for NBC News Beijing


"Seligman and Gong manage to bring forth from the bitter legacy of the Cultural Revolution a delightful book of recipes that serves up not just breakfast, lunch and dinner but also much food for thought." —Curtis S. Chin, former U.S. Ambassador to the Asian Development Bank

About the Author

Sasha Gong is an accomplished Chinese cook and the author of Born American: A Chinese Woman's Dream of Liberty. She lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Scott D. Seligman is a historian, the author of Chinese Business Etiquette, and the coauthor of Now You're Talking Mandarin Chinese. He lives in Washington, DC.


More About the Author

Scott D. Seligman is a writer, a historian, a genealogist, a retired corporate executive and a career "China hand." He has an undergraduate degree in history from Princeton University with a concentration in American civilization and a master's degree from Harvard University. Fluent in Mandarin and conversant in Cantonese, he lived in Taiwan, Hong Kong and China for eight years and reads and writes Chinese. He has worked as a legislative assistant to a member of the U.S. Congress, lobbied the Chinese government on behalf of American business, managed a multinational public relations agency in China, served as spokesperson and communications director for a Fortune 50 company and taught English in Taiwan and Chinese in Washington, DC. He is the author of Chinese Business Etiquette (Hachette, 1999), Dealing With the Chinese (Warner Books, 1989), Three Tough Chinamen (Earnshaw Books, 2012) and The First Chinese American: The Remarkable Life of Wong Chin Foo (Hong Kong University Press, 2013) and co-author of The Cultural Revolution Cookbook (Earnshaw Books, 2011), Chinese at a Glance (Barron's Educational Series, 1985 and 2001) and Now You're Talking Mandarin Chinese (Barron's, 2006). He has also published articles in the Asian Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, the Seattle Times, the China Business Review, Bucknell Magazine, Howard Magazine and the Jewish Daily Forward and has created several websites on historical and genealogical topics. He lives in Washington, DC.

Customer Reviews

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Beautifully illustrated and super recipes.
Nashville Nancy
I feel lucky to have found and now own this compendium of real delightful Cultural Revolution cooking.
Van
A really neat idea and one that our family enjoys together every few weeks!
Stacie Berdan

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

12 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Yobeen on January 22, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a beautiful cookbook. The illlustrations, pictures and anecdotes make for a unique presentation of the recipes. They use ingredients easily found which relieves the stress of searching for them or trying to find a suitable substitute. The dishes I have had have been very tasty and easy to prepare. I am looking forward to many more delicious meals from this book. I have given it as a gift to several people and they also have commented on how beautiful a book it is and how easy the recipes area and how easily the ingredients can be obtained. It is a great addition to my cookbook library.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Cogito on December 27, 2011
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A present to my wife for Christmas, but - don't tell her, comrades - it was really for ME! ;) The author includes little articles in the side bar of each recipe page that give you a sense of the human story behind the Cultural Revolution in China during the late 60's to early 70's. It may sound a bit weird, but food tells a direct, more accessible history of that difficult time in China's history than just dates etc. I could easily see this incorporated into a school curriculum - maybe one of you out there could blaze that revolutionary trail? Anyway, the recipes are simple, healthy and have been a big hit with our family. This makes a great gift for the cook in your family, particularly one who you couldn't get into a Chinese restaurant if your life depended on it because they had some goofy irrational disdain for the food...uh, don't tell my wife I said THAT either, ok?!
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful By A woman on December 29, 2011
Format: Paperback
I absolutely love this cookbook. Not only are the recipes great, but they are not hard to make. The ingredients aren't ones that will send you running to any specialty stores, but the food is authentic. And the book itself is beautiful-there are pictures of EVERY recipe in the book, and the non-food artwork that accompanies it is amazing. The text and theme of the book are also fascinating....it really shows how the Cultural 'Revolution' affected its people through food, and the history of the authors just adds to the story.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Dori Jones Yang on January 22, 2012
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Yum. Just finished eating tofu with scallions and sesame, cooked from this book. Fresh and tasty - and easy to prepare.
This book is a delight. The 1960s-era photos are charming, and each recipe has a small box with some fascinating detail about life in China during the Cultural Revolution. The authors were interviewed on NPR today, and their stories are fascinating, too. Highly recommended!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Van on September 9, 2013
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I learned to cook from a close friend who grew up in the Cultural Revolution. I was amazed to see this delicious cuisine published into such a well-produced beautiful book. Wonderful pictures, simple and authentic recipes and how to cook them accurately. Some recipes I had forgotten how to prepare and here they are, accurately and clearly photographed and described. I feel lucky to have found and now own this compendium of real delightful Cultural Revolution cooking. It is so aesthetically produced with drawings of the living, working, cultural scenes and environment at that time. Thank you for carrying this unusual and historical work Amazon.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By L. Poon on August 2, 2013
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This is a beautiful written cookbook described in touching, funny and bemusing; Meals triumph over time itself. Strongly recommend it.
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I bought this book as a gift for a young couple, The wife is Chinese American. I think it's perfect for them. The recipes are easy and the book is colorful and informative.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Zoe on July 10, 2014
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Readers looking for deeply authentic recipes might be a little disappointed by this book, but those who can look past the idea of all Chinese cookbooks falling into the same genre will enjoy this tremendously. I really appreciated this book!

The History--This book takes an unconventional crack at MODERN China, and the not-too-sunny history that defined Sasha Gong's generation. The historical framing is admirable and nuanced (provided you read it carefully), and Seligman picked out some truly interesting illustrations from the era. I think people who are versed in China's modern history would very much appreciate the history documented in this book.
The Recipes--I bought this book as a gift to a college grad. Mostly because the recipes are simple and require very few special ingredients/equipment (I think this is one of the book's greatest advantages. Fuschia Dunlop's work is fantastic, for example, but her recipes require special ingredients that aren't in very grocery. And not every recipe is all that easy.). Even better, the food itself is quite healthy, so you could feasibly cook from this book every day.

My parents are both ethnically Chinese, and I make frequent trips to China. I wouldn't laud this book as the most authentic, but it's certainly an unconventional and interesting introduction to modern China and Chinese cuisine.
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