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Ching’s Chinese Food in Minutes Hardcover – 3 Sep 2009
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Praise for Chinese Food Made Easy:
‘Packed with delicious, easy-to-make dishes … Ching-He Huang is the new face of Chinese cooking.’
Heat magazine [five star review on 19/7/08]
From the Publisher
See inside Ching's Chinese Food in Minutes for details of how you can win a 10-day holiday for two to China courtesy of Wendy Wu Tours!
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The first recipe I tried from this book was the hot and sour soup and I have to say, it was incredible! I have never made it before. I always get it from the takeaway and most of the time it is good, sometimes disappointing but this turned out absolutely perfect!! I was amazed, it was so simple to make, ready within half an hour and tasted superb (even if I do say so myself). I have since tried 4 other main dish recipes and every one has turned out, not only edible but also restaurant standard even the egg fried rice, which I have tried in the past but it has never tasted right.
My only real previous experience was cooking a 5 course chinese dinner for a dinner party 20 years ago from a book by Ken Hom and while the results were great, I spent the entire time in the kitchen and very little time sat at the table eating. From that I had decided that Chinese cooking takes too much effort and time but after using this book, my attitude has changed. I even went out and bought a new wok.
The only thing I would say is that a lot of recipes in this book are spicy (chillis are used a lot) I suspect Miss Huang comes from the Sichuan Province perhaps. Obviously you can make the dishes with less or more of the chilli content but just a warning. I, however, love spicy food so there are plenty of recipes in here to keep me happy. I just wish there had been a few more recipes which use tofu.
If you looking to try chinese food then this is a great book, every recipe really is easy and quick and almost foolproof.
Now, for the recipes... The titles such as "Exploding river prawns", "Spicy Sichuan aubergine" and "Crispy twice-cooked pork" sure make your mouth water, and are as delicious as they sound like. My ultimate favourite recipe is the "Fried sweet chilli chicken" which you must try - it is absolutely gorgeous! The recipes are divided into sections according to whether they are starters, beef, duck, pork, sides or vegetarian. There are also some really cool dessert options with an Asian twist and at the end there is an "Easy entertaining" sector with recipes popular in parties.
My only two gripes with the book are the time it takes to prepare the dishes and that some of the recipes are a bit fiddly. The preparation time I find is underestimated in the book, however, this may be more due to me being an inexperienced cook. Secondly, some of the recipes require a spooful or two of several different ingredients, some of which I find pretty useless to buy (e.g. yellow/black bean sauce) as you won't use them in anything else. I've usually just ignored these however, and it's been usually ok.
Even though I have bought and tried a number of Chinese cookery books before, this is the one that has truly helped me to cook some authentic Chinese dishes. I am not a particularly experienced or an especially knowledgeable cook at all as I tend to give up once the instructions list become a bit lengthy or the ingredients complicated. With this book, however, Ching makes every thing easy and interesting to do. Each of the mostly red or white meat dishes, which takes 20 to 30 minutes to prepare, is presented in an easy -to - follow format of three to five short steps, while the food ingredients are readily available at local Chinese food shops.
I have been very encouraged by positive feedbacks from family and friends about some of the dishes I have cooked so far, and I am really pleased with this book.
Remember to use untoasted sesame oil.
This book is even better than her Chinese Food Made Easy.
I tried the hot and sour soup and it was amazingly easy to make and tasted really authentic. This soup is what I fantasise about when I'm feeling under the weather, and long for a Chinese restaurant to supply a good version - no more, I can make it myself from now on! Have made it twice already this week.
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