January 28, 2017
Just listened to an interview with Cecilia Chiang on NPR, offering some optimistic news. At 97, Cecilia sees the move from the Year of the Monkey – nothing’s worse than that troublesome trickster – to the Year of the Rooster. “The rooster wakes you up,” she said, “and that’s a hopeful sign.”
Cecilia is never wrong. Twenty-eight years ago, when I was nine months pregnant, she insisted that should the baby fail to arrive by the end of the month I must have him induced. “You want a dragon baby,” she insisted. “Very important.”
The baby obliged, showing up in the nick of time. To this day Cecilia calls him “Little Dragon.”
If you want to celebrate Chinese New Year and a better future, here are Cecilia’s recipes for a few classic recipes:
Feeling more ambitious? Here’s a recipe from Taiwanese cooking celebrity Pei Mei’s 1969 cookbook.
And while thinking of Cecilia, I was reminded of another nonagenerian San Francisco Chinese food celebrity, Henry Chung. His tiny Hunan Restaurant introduced many of us to the fiery food of the region. Here’s his easier idea for duck.
Categorised in: Vintage Books and Magazines