Classic Deem Sum – Recipes From Yang Sing Restaurant in San Francisco by Henry Chan, Yukiko Haydock and Bob Haydock is a treatise on the ancient art of deem sum (also known as dim sum – food served in bite-sized pieces and often selected from trolleys by diners at the table), which originated some 700 years ago in the grand edifices of the Sung Dynasty.
The recipe book provides a series of very elaborate dishes which are steamed, deep-fried, pan-fried, roasted and sweet.
The authors begin by defining, for Western readers who may not be familiar with them, some of the many classic Chinese ingredients; such as, bamboo shoots, bean curd, Chinese cabbage, Chinese turnip, Hoison sauce, Five Spice Powder, sesame seed paste, Szechuan peppercorns, Shao Hsing wine and wonton skins.
The book describes the basic cooking techniques and tools. Examples of important cooking implements now commonly found in the Western kitchen are the concave interior basin, ladle scoops, the steamer, the bamboo steamer and the wok.
The authors explain how to prepare specific dishes like chicken crescents, beef baskets with dumplings, four color dumplings, shrimp moons, beef with watercress, steamed spareribs, Mandarin dumplings, shrimp toast, spring rolls, taro dumplings, fried fish bowls and cream cheese wanton.
The book describes very specific oils to utilize in preparing the food. Examples of the classic oils are Szechuan peppercorn oil, chili pepper oil, soy sauce dips, bean curd sauce and chicken stock.
Classic Deem Sum – Recipes From Yang Sing Restaurant in San Francisco by Henry Chan, Yukiko Haydock and Bob Haydock is an excellent book on the fine art of centuries-old Chinese cooking utilizing many of the classic tools and techniques.
The presentation is easy to read. It is illustrated very carefully with many pictures of the food preparations in varying stages of development.