Lucky Peach Asian cookbook

I’m a big fan of Lucky Peach magazine, especially after the tragic redesign of Saveur. David Leibowitz wrote about Lucky Peach’s new Asian cookbook today in his column:

I preordered it on Amazon, and I just wanted to let people know it’s coming out in October. Can’t wait to try some of the recipes.

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I’m going to wait until I can take a look at this one, either in a store or from the library. I have a halfway decent collection of Asian cookbooks (Dunlop, Young, Kuo, Nguyen) and a fairly well-stocked Asian pantry. I’m certainly not a stickler for authenticity (love a lot of the fusion recipes in Stir Frying to the Sky’s Edge), but I may already have and make other versions of what’s in the Meehan book.

it looks v. promising from the previews in the newsletter. I’d like to see it at the library first too, though.

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My copy of 101 Easy Asian Recipes arrived yesterday and to me it looks as if it’s going to get quite a lot of use here. I really haven’t had a chance to read through yet, but just rifling I instantly saw a pretty tasty sounding Miso Clam Chowder/104, and Jap Chae/126. Already bookmarked and nec. ingredients on a shopping list.


Mine just arrived too. I forgot I decided to order it. I haven’t gotten to it yet, but let us know what you make and how you like it. Mine opened to the recipe for Jap Chae which is one of my favorite Korean dishes.

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Will do. Perhaps if more people buy the book we could start a Reporting Thread for what we cook… ?

Any updates on this? Amazon “wants” me to buy it :slight_smile:

I’ve made a few things from it so far, (dumplings, a few noodle things, the adobo, some of the condiments and pickles) and they’ve all been really good. The only thing I didn’t like were the scallion pancakes I made from it. They were too dry and crispy,and I like mine chewier and with more scallions.

The recipes are all kind of basic, which makes them really approachable and easy to put together, but if you have a good collection of similar cookbooks, it probably won’t change your life. I thought the writing and photography were both really fun, but I can also see how some people might find them kind of affected. There’s a little banner on the back cover that proudly proclaims that the book is “100%” inauthentic, and however you feel about that will probably be how you feel about the book. I’ve been enjoying it a lot, and it’s not exactly an expensive book, but I’d recommend checking it out at the library first if you’re really on the fence.

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Sounds fun! And I have such a crush on Chang :slight_smile: Thanks for the feedback.

What else do people like from this? I made two vegetable dishes so far, both intensely flavored and quick weeknight dishes.

  • Miso glazed eggplant: The unfussiest eggplant dish I’ve ever made— no need to salt to wick out moisture and minimal oil and effort. The glaze dominates the flavors, putting the eggplants focus as a texture, and I’m encouraged to scale it back a bit or pursue this technique with other Asian umami-rich pastes.

  • spicy cold celery: Celery will never go to waste again! The recipe calls for a condiment called laoganma (which has chili oil, MSG, Sichuan peppercorns, etc.) or plain chili oil. I used some homemade chili oil (Fuchsia Dunlop recipe), a sprinkle of ground Sichuan peppercorn, and a dab of miso to replace the MSG.

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I made the sambal oleek sauce, that came out well.

Scallion-garlic sauce was good, but the Momofuku cookbook version is better.

The hot and sour soup was not very flavorful, I doctored it up to add more tang and spice.

Sichuan pork ragu - this was a resounding success in my house.

I also made various noodle and fried rice dishes, they were all good.

The big hit was jumeokbap (?), Korean rice balls. Warm rice , minced or ground spiced meat and a little sesame oil, which you mix together, then form into balls. They can be eaten warm or cold. Since then, I’ve expanded this to any leftover meat and rice I have in the fridge. Yesterday I used leftover yellow rice and taco meat to make rice balls, and the boy and his friends totally chowed on them.

Everything in the book is pretty good, but not super-flavorful or authentic or anything; it’s more of a weeknight cookbook with a variety of Asian recipes that are easy to put together. The sauce and condiment sections are great, though.

This was a COTM, together with Momofuku, on Chowhound a few months ago (last time I really participated in the cooking forums). I found Momofuku much more interesting and challenging, but I did pick up some tricks from the Lucky Peach book.

I love that celery recipe. So easy.

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Bessarabsky Market, Kyiv. Ukraine
Credit: Juan Antonio Segal, Flickr