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All Under Heaven: Recipes from the 35 Cuisines of China Hardcover – August 30, 2016
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2017 JAMES BEARD FOUNDATION BOOK AWARD NOMINEE: INTERNATIONAL
James Beard Foundation Book Awards
“The vastness and complexity of the many cuisines of China would be daunting to anyone yet Carolyn Phillips has produced a monumental work. Scholarly, comprehensive, based on thorough research yet seasoned with her own insights of an ancient civilization rediscovering and exploring its own culinary history, this is bound to become a classic on the subject and part of the foundation of any serious cook’s reference library.”
—DAVID KINCH, author of Manresa
“Carolyn Phillips brings a bold new voice to the subject of Chinese cooking. All Under Heaven is the result of a lifetime passion and fascination with Chinese cuisine. Many of the recipes are not for a novice cook but it’s an impressive read even if you never cook a single recipe. An added bonus is the author’s charming illustrations.”
— GRACE YOUNG, author of Stir-Frying to the Sky’s Edge
"Packed with 300-plus recipes (e.g., abalone shreds with mung bean sprouts, bitter melons in golden sand, lotus-wrapped spicy rice crumb pork), this unprecedented reference will thrill cooks who want to expand their knowledge and move beyond the mainstays of American Chinese restaurant menus. Those who enjoy the thoroughly researched cookbooks of experts such as Claudia Roden (The New Book of Middle Eastern Food) will appreciate Phillips’s comprehensive treatment, which includes historical information, an extensive ingredient glossary, suggested menus, and useful advice."
— Library Journal, Starred Review
"[A] comprehensive and thoughtful examination of Chinese cuisine, providing a wealth of appealing recipes for beginner and advanced cooks."
— Publishers Weekly
"All Under Heaven follows the illustrated tradition of books like Shizuo Tsuji’s Japanese Cooking: A Simple Art and Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking, and therein lies its strength. Ms. Phillips’s simple line drawings cover everything from pulling noodles to removing pig hairs. It’s almost as good as watching over the chef’s shoulder."
— The New York Times
Favorite Cookbooks of Fall 2016
— Los Angeles Times
"There’s no denying Phillips has done her research, delving into 35 Chinese cuisines in admirable depth. "
— Tasting Table
"Organized by regions beginning with a background of that area, Phillips heart and soul can be felt in every word. The book is massive but perfectly laid out with stark white pages, easy to follow instructions with maps and drawings that speaks to her story. She highlights extra information to perfect each dish in red font after each recipe. It is as if she is in the kitchen with us working beside us to make sure we achieve the best results. ...This book is sure to be this year’s best cookbook, I have no doubt."
— The Cookbook Junkies
"Is This the Best Chinese Cookbook Ever Written?"
"'All Under Heaven' is an accessible overview separating Chinese cuisine into five culinary regions. It’s perfect for the starter Chinese cook."
— Wall Street Journal
"It’s magnificent, a reference on the eight traditional Chinese cuisines, with 300 recipes. But at the same time you’ll enjoy her clever subtitles, side references to James Bond, and friendly tips on how to cook, including how to stand while chopping."
— Dianne Jacob
"Carolyn Phillips’ 'All Under Heaven' is at once as heavy as a doorstop and as ethereal as a proper Chinese dumpling. A Mandarin scholar who married into a Chinese family, Phillips spent years mastering her adopted cuisine, and it shows in every recipe and line drawing, which she renders in her own hand with considerable elegance."
— Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"This book is a work of great passion that rewards on so many levels. Every recipe I tried was excellent, there is a wealth of information that will keep your mind occupied for years, and the personality of the author shines through."
— Leite's Culinaria
"Phillips never stops pushing the limits of her own vast knowledge, and you can really tell that a lifetime of expertise went into this, because this is a book that cooks with all its heart and soul.”
— T. Susan Chang, The Level Teaspoon
"The charming illustrations were drawn by Phillips and even though there’s not a photograph in sight, her writing and very clearly written recipes will make you want to cook your way through China, and this book."
— NPRs Here and Now
"Drawing from ancient culinary texts as well as her own experience, Carolyn Phillips created a spirited, symphonic love letter to China's flavors and textures — from simple fried green onion noodles to lotus-wrapped spicy rice crumb pork. It's both a handbook for novices and inspiration for veteran cooks."
"Rigorously researched and deliciously annotated, the heavy black volume may seem as foreboding as the Great Wall. But do not be intimidated, dear comrade: The charms within are considerable, and Phillips makes the material accessible to American audiences. This is not a book to be scanned, but one to be held in your lap for hours on end. It is magnificent, and it will make you very, very hungry."
— Atlanta Journal-Constitution
"[S]tunning and massive . . . an incredibly rich roadmap to Chinese dishes."
The Forty Best Cookbooks of 2016 -- #1 (tie)
— Eat Your Books
"An inspiring, enlightening necessity for food enthusiasts everywhere."
— Shelf Awareness
About the Author
CAROLYN PHILLIPS is a food writer, scholar, and artist whose second book will be The Dim Sum Field Guide: A Taxonomy of Dumplings, Buns, Meats, Sweets, and Other Specialties of the Chinese Teahouse (Ten Speed, August 2016). Her work has appeared in numerous places, including Best Food Writing 2015, Lucky Peach, Gastronomica, BuzzFeed, Alimentum, Huffington Post, Zester Daily, Food52, and at the 2013 MAD Symposium in Copenhagen, as well as in her weekly blog, Madame Huang’s Kitchen (MadameHuang.com). She can be found on Twitter as @madamehuang and on Instagram as @therealmadamehuang.
Carolyn’s art has appeared everywhere from museums and galleries to various magazines and journals to Nickelodeon’s Supah Ninjas series. She was a professional Mandarin interpreter in the federal and state courts for over a decade, and she and her husband recently acted as cultural consultants for the third Ghostbusters movie (2016). She lived in Taiwan for eight years, has translated countless books and articles, and married into a Chinese family more than thirty years ago.
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Top customer reviews
Right now I'm working through the Shanghai/Yangtze region. My mom is old school Shanghainese (90+) and I'm recognizing recipes and ingredients I haven't seen in years. This is for real, stuff I haven't seen in the U.S. since I was a kid going to banquets, dinners with my parent's friends and restaurants where someone native to Shanghai was ordering. I don't even know how to order many of the dishes or buy the ingredients, and it's killing me! That being said, she's also giving subs and encouraging readers to cook it even if there are ingredients missing. Go for it. Cooking chinese is adapting yourself to whatever's available.
The only comparable author I can think of is the late, great Barbara Tropp, who authored The Modern Art of Chinese Cooking. Until now, that was my definitive reference and tour on the breadth of chinese cooking through it's many regions. Carolyn Phillips' book is a step forward, with her identification of regional tastes and examples of regional dishes. Barbara Tropp didn't break out the regions and tastes as clearly or rigorously.
I'll report back when I work my way through further chapters. This book is huge. I can tell I'm going to be spending a LOT of time going through this and gaining a better understanding of what's simplistically referred to as "chinese cuisine".
additions : If you're fairly new to Chinese cooking, start with the intro basics section of the book. It's actually a section toward the end of the book. There are going to be some sections, especially in the glossary where some pictures for identification would've helped. Google is your friend. Stick close to PC or tablet when you're going through this section. I've been cooking chinese for 30+ years after being taught by my mom, and I'm still reading about ingredients in this book I've never even heard of. This book is almost purely recipes, so I recommend pairing it with another chinese cookbook for chinese cooking techniques if you're not familiar with them.
If you're serious about your chinese food, buy a copy.
I paid for a copy. Zippo influence from anyone or anything.....
I think this book might be a bit overwhelming for an inexperienced cook; someone unfamiliar with Oriental ingredients. Although, if you glance through the very exemplary "Look Inside" feature on this product page, you will see that many recipes are very approachable, and ingredients readily available from a large well-stocked grocery store. If you are inexperienced, yet very interested in discovering the regional cooking of China, you will be able to tackle these recipes with gumption and determination. While a large oriental grocery store would surely be a great help, it is not mandatory for maybe a third-to-half of the recipes. If you are out in the middle of nowhere, Amazon's vast array of foodstuffs can come to your rescue.
While many of the line drawings are beautiful, without even a few full-color photos, the book is a bit difficult to plow through if your intent is to just glance at the recipes and whiling away a peaceful afternoon. This is a serious book, loaded with information, and not suited for light reading.
Each region is covered, but no region is really covered in depth. Each region has sub-regions, and there is a sprinkling of recipes for each. For instance, I was hoping to learn more about Hakka dishes. While there were a few recipes, I yearned for more. Hence, I call this book an "introduction" despite its 500+ pages. There is enough information on each area to whet your appetite.
I've written quite a few cook book reviews, and I usually include some of my favorite dishes before I wrap it up. Not this time. This book is truly vast in scope, and I don't really have any favorites. I can say that I started with a temporary download of the book from the publisher Ten Speed Press, and today, now that Amazon has it offered for sale, I have purchased my own copy. I can say that the recipes I tried so far produced the predicted results. Now, I want to have the book for my own; to have and hold a hard copy to study it better. It is that kind of book. I bought a hard copy because I think it will be easier to manage than the Kindle version. I want to flip pages back and forth between the recipes, the decent glossary in the back, and the extensive index.
Maybe it would give you some insight, if I told you that I now live in a large motor coach, and I do a lot of cooking outdoors. And I am really trying to downsize my cookbook collection, and have gone from over a thousand cook books to a single cabinet-full in the bus. And I still indulged myself with this book.....I am looking forward to really getting to know the recipes in All Under Heaven during the cooler months coming up.
*I received a free, temporary download of the ARC of this book from the publishers.