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Peranakan Heritage Cooking (Singapore Heritage Cooking)
Peranakan Heritage Cooking (Singapore Heritage Cooking)
by Philip Chia
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $27.86
38 used & new from $20.29

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best book to date on Peranakan Food, September 14, 2013
Amazon should allow users to vote for the removal of useless comments like the one from Stephen Foster above. 3 Stars for a book you 'plan to buy' and haven't even read? Thats just ridiculous.

I've had many opportunities to meet the author as well as sample his food. As with most Asian cooking that starts with a 'rempah' or spice paste, flavours will vary greatly depending on the ingredients at hand. That is why recipes such as these can serve as a guideline for improvisation by more experienced cooks.

However, if one wants to just follow the recipes directly, the recipes in here are authentic with no ingredients 'left out' as is always the case when it comes to Asian recipes. Most Peranakans will never share their recipes with anyone but thankfully, the author unselfishly chooses to document and share his 'secret' recipes.

My favourite recipes in this book are the babi tohay (His family recipe for pork in red rice yeast), mee siam, fish otak, chicken buah keluak, tamarind fish curry and okra salad with chilli. Each of these recipes work perfectly and taste great. I'm looking forward to other books that the author might be releasing in the future as Peranakan cooking is so diverse that this book probably covers only the 'greatest hits'. I would recommend that lovers of Asian food add this book to their collection and please don't leave it on the shelf....cook from it!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 25, 2013 10:57 AM PDT

The Patisserie of Pierre Herme (Spanish Ed.)
The Patisserie of Pierre Herme (Spanish Ed.)
by Pierre Herme
Edition: Hardcover
5 used & new from $300.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An amazing catalogue of Pierre Herme's talent, April 22, 2006
Pierre Herme shows why he's the best patissier in the world and his willingness to share his recipes and secrets in the scientific and precise world of pastry is just unthinkable.

Like any chef ahead of his game (Think...Ferran Adria of El Bulli or Thomas Keller of French Laundry), he hides nothing and spills out everything.

His macaroons are pure simplicity but the precision and process that goes into it is breath-taking and garners on-going discussions on the EG forums.

Be warned though, this is a book geared for professionals and the quantities are huge. Also, he does not specify the pan sizes and is very vague on instructions.

Publishing a book like this is cost prohibitive, and he assumes that the person buying this book would be a pastry professional. If he were to include more precise instructions, it would be a thicker volume costing lots more.

Anyway, there are only so few ways you can make a genoise or a ganache. If you want clearer instructions, get his dessert books with Dorie Greenspan, which will probably cover most of the techniques needed in more detail for different components.

I've got this book and can't wait for his new one, PH10 which will be translated into English.

An amazing book, by an amazing chef. One day, I hope to meet him in person and invite him to do a masterclass for my customers in Thailand.

Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme
Chocolate Desserts by Pierre Herme
by Dorie Greenspan
Edition: Hardcover
39 used & new from $19.99

11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing chocolate creativity, November 1, 2005
I've been furiously purchasing chocolate books to learn as much as possible about the food of the gods and Pierre Herme's book is the most spectacular, creative and amazing.

Everything is in metric weight...which is great. Compared to Robert Linxe's book for La Maison du Chocolat, I gotta say Pierre's shines. Whilst La Maison was good...with nice pix, the recipes were horribly noted and one feels like Linxe is hiding the real recipe.

Pierre's book gave inspiration, lots of ideas, and most importantly, lots of great recipes I can use.

Amazing amazing amazing. Can't wait to try his creations at his stores in Tokyo.

Shiok!: Exciting Tropical Asian Flavors
Shiok!: Exciting Tropical Asian Flavors
by Terry Tan
Edition: Paperback
26 used & new from $14.70

10 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Preservation of our unique culture, October 20, 2005
Glad that there is finally a book that will preserve our unique food culture for our future generations. The only negative thing about this book would be the way the food is presented.

The food presentation is just too nice and classy looking. Growing up eating street (hawker) food, presentation is the last thing on my mind.

For someone who has never resided in Singapore, it will be hard to truly appreciate Singaporean food to its fullest. The recipes for Roti prata evoked late night memories of driving to Jalan Kayu, Buona Vista South (Next to NUS) or Al Ameen's at Woodlands for a late night fix of cheese, mushroom and egg prata washed down with several mugs of Teh Cino less sugar (as we say in classic Singlish).

How bout driving across the island from Choa Chu Kang to Changi Village just to eat Nasi Lemak or Kuay Chap (not in the book!). Just for a quick in Melbourne, I live on Latrobe street, and interestingly enough, the Changi Village Nasi Lemak store is just 2 doors away. I've never had worst malay food in my life..though they claim to be the Aussie arm of the original.

The recipe for Beef Hor Fun brings back memories of the endless circling of Geylang to find a parking space and finishing dinner off with Tau Huay with yaw cha kwai (Sweet bean curd with deep fried chinese pastry).

Again, here in Melbourne's Chinatown, I've never had worst Beef Hor Fun. Even the WORST Beef Hor Fun in Singapore still tastes better than what Melbourne has.

The reason?

In Singapore, our hawkers specialise only on a very limited menu of say.....3 to 5 dishes? For example, my friend, Junjie who runs a Hainanese Chicken Rice store in Kallang, sells only roast or boiled chicken rice, char siew rice or roast pork rice.

China Bar in Melbourne has like 30 different items on the menu...all of them tasting similar. That is...similarly like crap. Most of the cooks coming from Hong Kong, I expected MUCH MORE. They ain't doing their country's food reputation any good.

In Singapore, at 2 in the morning, I walk 5 mins to the 24 hour hawker centre (S11) in Choa Chu Kang's HDB heartlands and can find at least 20 of the recipes found under 'Hawker Favourites', all available at around US$2 a plate.

Here in Melbourne, nothing starts under US$6 a plate...and I get a plate of tasteless food overseasoned with salt or soy sauce, lacking the essential "wok hei" or "Wok's breath". So what is this elusive "wok hei?"

Lets take the simple fried rice. Firstly....there are many types of fried rice, so if New York City only has one type seasoned with salt, here is how you can differentiate a good one from a bad one.

If you just taste oil, garlic, rice and soy/salt and the other various have a crap plate of fried rice. If you taste a plate with "wok hei", you can smell it. It has a deeper flavour that will remind you of slightly charred food. Its hard to explain how it its not the charred taste that you are imaging right now. It is a subtle taste.

I can guarantee you it is not charred, but instead, been imbued with this delicately delectable flavour through the hawker's skillful manipulation of the most basic of elements, metal and fire.

Even in Singapore, not all hawkers possess this skill. Not all foods require 'Wok hei', but for those that need it, it makes a world of difference.

For us Singaporeans overseas, all we can do is to try the recipes in these books and tweak them as everyone should. We do this all the time, so we can share with our Thai, Laos and Vietnamese friends in Melbourne the taste of Bukit Batok Bak Kut Teh or Balestier Road's Hainanese Chicken Rice. They do the same for us with their country's recipes and everyone has been enriched ever more by our shared experiences.

Thank god I'm returning home in December.

Warmth in the Wilderness: A Tribute to Jason Becker
Warmth in the Wilderness: A Tribute to Jason Becker
20 used & new from $12.25

5.0 out of 5 stars Great tribute album!, September 7, 2002
Its a very good double cd packed with music. Jason has inspired countless musicians and its great to see a few great names and some upcoming 'stars' paying tribute here.
Listen to Air on this cd and you'll see how technically advanced Jason was for his age. The guitarist playing this song couldn't keep it as clean or fluid as Jason.

Price: $13.98
15 used & new from $8.25

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Music, September 7, 2002
This review is from: Perspective (Audio CD)
Ignore the negative reviews, they were looking for a shred album. Its disappointing to know so many 'shredders' have such closed minds when coming to music.
Perpetual burn was the first cd I ever bought and Jason is a constant source of inspiration for me. I listen to perspective everytime life throws some problems at me and find inspiration to solve my problem by listening to the songs.
Ethereally beautiful at times, intense at others, but beautiful all the same. This is no Perpetual Burn or Cacophony I can gurantee you, but the music on here communicates not with chops or blistering solos, but with inspiration from above. Jason's composing talents, inner strength, indominable will and spirit have culminated in this beautiful cd.
I heard he is releasing another cd like Raspberry Jam, can't wait.

Perpetual Burn
Perpetual Burn
Price: $19.52
25 used & new from $6.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This CD changed my life, January 26, 2001
This review is from: Perpetual Burn (Audio CD)
I was a 13 yr old kid and my friend passed me a tape of Cacophony's Speed Metal Symphony. I was amazed by it and special ordered Perpetual Burn(It was hard to get in Singapore)
After listening to it many many times, I discovered a new style of music and have been on that road ever since. No more Gnr, Metallica, etc.....
That's child's play after this. His later albums are great too. His battle with ALS has ravaged his body but not his spirit. I've got several videos of him playing and they are awe-inspiring. Get all his albums.
Thank You, Jason, you inspired me to achieve things that I thought were beyond myself.
Do yourself a favor, buy this cd today.

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