Elegant & Easy Chinese Cooking


248 pages
Contains Illustrations, Index
ISBN 0-88830-260-6






Reviewed by Joan McGrath

Joan McGrath is a Toronto Board of Education library consultant.


Almost everyone’s favourite way to eat out is to “go Chinese.” But with the aid of this attractive guide to “elegant and easy” Chinese cookery, there will be an option of dining in on those same delicious dishes. These recipes were selected as being particularly well adapted for the North American palate, not too exotic, and not requiring ingredients difficult to find or expensive to purchase.

The author briefly describes and differentiates between the regional cooking styles of China: Cantonese, Szechuan, Hunan, Peking (Mandarin), and Fukien; and points out that Chinese cookery, from whatever province, incorporates four principles (harmony, colour, texture, and contrast) that must be respected. Foods must be fresh, and the proper methods of shopping and selection are outlined. Also included are notes on wok cookery; on the use of the Chinese steamer, the casserole, and the stock pot; and the place of the food processor in Chinese cookery.

The 146 recipes are listed under the headings Garnishes and Presentations, Sauces, Appetizers, Rice and Noodles, Bean Curd and Eggs, Soups, Vegetables, Meat, Variety Meats, Poultry, and Fish and Seafood. Directions are clearly expressed and easy to follow, some illustrated by explanatory diagrams, with an insert of coloured food photography that is most enticing. Indexed.


Nowell, Iris, “Elegant & Easy Chinese Cooking,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed May 29, 2024, https://cbra.library.utoronto.ca/items/show/37066.