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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars38
4.5 out of 5 stars
Format: Hardcover|Change
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on 5 April 2011
I love cooking and experimenting with new recipes, but always thought chinese would not taste like i expected (take aways) well i was gob smacked by the delicious results. It was a bit complex first off but once youv'e cooked one or two of the recipes you can see a pattern of more or less the same basic ingredients. They are so tasty,and healthy that you would never buy from a take away again. recipes are easy to follow, and most ingredients you can purchase from your local supermarket. have tried quite a few of the recipes now and all are delicious. An excellent buy !!!
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on 5 March 2011
I bought this after seeing Ken Hom on tv. I managed to get all the ingredients for the recipes I wanted to try first although had to go to China town in London for some of them. Of the three dishes I cooked, they were all delicious and so healthy too. My mum is from Hong Kong so she was my guinea pig and she loved it! No more takeaways for us!
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on 31 May 2011
I was looking for a general book from which to learn how to cook everyday Chinese food (had already worked out from various recipes how to do a mean crispy duck) so wanted a good general book. Having looked at various of the popular authors this one seemed to fit the bill.

It does provide a good array of recipes and a very useful review of ingredients and techniques at the beginning. I have enjoyed cooking from it and it seems to taste like chinese food, even to my friends who know China quite well.

My main concerns with it are that the recipes themselves are not well structured - just a stream of instructions - when I have been able to break them down into rather simpler steps, and identify where I can prepare in advance and then quickly cook at the end - combining say blanced or marinated meat, prepared vegetsables and a sauce mixed from ingredients rather than just doing a list of 20 ingredients at once. So many of the recipes have duplicate paragraphs on having a hot wok etc, that it gets a bit repetitive.

Still, it has done what I wanted and the recipes mostly seem to work and taste good ( I am having no success in coating sweet and sour meat in cornflour batter before cooking but am happy without the batter anyway). But it rankles that I am more or less re-writing the recipes to make them more cookable. (If you don't know what a good 'cookable' book looks like, read Raymond Blanc's "Cooking for Friends" that breaks even his complex dishes down into a clear and well organised process of cooking).

So a four - I like the book, but it could be a much better "how to cook Chinese food" book.
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on 22 August 2013
Bought this upon returning form a long trip to China, expecting it to cover all the basic traditional recipes. Though nicely presented, I find there are many gaps, with many of the ubiquitous dishes found across China missing. The 'complete' in the title made me expect a more comprehensive and thorough collection, with fewer simplifications. Though such simplified recipes are great if one does not have access to the more unusual ingredients, it reduces the authenticity I was hoping for. Ken Hom's book written together with Ching He Huang is a much better purchase.
Chinese cuisine not known for desserts/cakes in the West, which is a shame as I found the sweets amazing across the country (e.g. moon cakes). I do wish books on Chinese cooking highlighted this untapped part of the cuisine more!
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on 24 August 2011
I like the recipes in this book, and finding a copy of Ken's book from 1982 or so actually inspired me to try cooking Chinese food. Funnily enough, when I compared the suggested menus in each, I noticed they were more or less identical.
Further investigation revealed a lot of similar content - no big drama, but how about photos of every dish so I think I'm getting something new? There are a lot of pictures but too many of them are photos of ingredients, knives, Ken and the like. I know what kitchen equipment looks like, show me the food!

Overall, a good book for fledgling Chinophile chefs and experienced ones too - lots of advice on tools, prep and ingredients, and some great grub as well.
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on 10 May 2013
Got this for my Girlfriend who promised to serve me gourmet Chinese dishes, she didn't disappoint. still hasn't.
i think my local Chinese restaurant should buy his book!
its great with nice pictures and easy to follow recipes and good pictures.
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on 27 January 2014
CLear and straightforward recipes and instructions for a huge range of Chinese dishes. Every page is inviting. Had to get my own copy as the library wanted theirs back!
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on 4 June 2013
Could this be the only Chinese cookery book you need to own? Quite possibly! A pretty comprehensive book, with easy to follow recipes and really nicely presented.
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on 8 September 2014
A great book with super recipes. I find it best to double the quantities on the ingredient list unless you are on a diet or a very small eater.!!
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on 26 April 2014
This was bought to me as a birthday present last year. I have subsequently tried many, many recipes. They have all been extremely tasty and far better than any takeaway. Even takeaway standard dishes such as 'beef in black bean sauce' are far superior. You will also eat dishes that you will never see in a takeaway/restaurant menu. The recipes for pigs' kidneys are amazing. The recipes are easier than you might think. Most time is spent in preparation. Treat your tastebuds. You may never buy a takeaway again!
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