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Mrs. Chiang's Szechwan Cookbook

Harper and Row, New York, 1976 (2nd ed., 1987); Electronic edition, Askmar Publishers, 2011;

Mrs. Chiangs Szechwan Cookbook, the first authentic Szechwan cookbook, centers around the recipes of Chiang Jung-feng, the remarkable cook John and Ellen Schrecker met when they were studying Chinese culture in Taiwan. Mrs. Chiang grew up in Szechwan, in a household of demanding gourmets who raised most of their own food, butchered their own pigs, and made their own soy sauce and vinegar. Her mother was a superlative cook who understood very well that her daughter's fortune depended on her skill in the kitchen. Mrs. Chiang eventually found her way to Taiwan, where her cooking became famous. When John and Ellen Schrecker first tasted it they were astonished at the difference between authentic Szechwan food and American restaurant fare: they had discovered what the Chinese call the zhen wer, the true taste, a classical principle of careful preparation.

Reviews

“5.0 out of 5 stars A True Classic. If you love to cook and like Chinese-Szechwanese food, you will love this book.”

― Amazon Review

“5.0 out of 5 stars The best Szechwan cookbook ever! I lived in China for a year in the 1990's, and my favorite place to eat was a Sichuan restaurant near the university where I was teaching. The people working there were all from Sichuan province, and their dishes were authentic. I had many favorites, and when I came back to the USA, I was very disappointed that I could never find any of those dishes at Chinese restaurants in America--except perhaps Kung Pao Chicken--but it was/is nothing like what I ate regularly in China.

When I discovered Mrs. Chiang's, I found several recipes that are just as I had them in China. Everything I have ever made from Mrs. Chiang's has been mouth-wateringly delicious, and I have lately thought that I want to cook my way through Mrs. Chiang's, the way that Julie cooked her way through Julia Child's cookbook in "Julie and Julia."

 

You just can't go wrong with Mrs. Chiang's.”

― Amazon Review