Stir-Frying to the Sky's Edge: The Ultimate Guide to Mastery, with Authentic Recipes and Stories
Winner of the 2011 James Beard Foundation Award for International Cooking
The stir-fry is all things: refined, improvisational, adaptable, and inventive. It is the rare culinary practice that makes less seem like more, and by which small amounts of food feed many.
For centuries the Chinese have carried their woks to all corners of the earth and re-created stir-fry dishes, using local and sometimes nontraditional ingredients. The old expression: "One wok runs to the sky’s edge" means "one who uses the wok becomes master of the cooking world." And as the wok user becomes master of the cooking world, so does he become master of the stir-fry, one of the greatest techniques of Chinese cookery.
The technique and tradition of stir-frying, which is at once simple yet subtly complex, is as vital today as it has been for hundreds of years. In Stir-Frying to the Sky’s Edge, James Beard Award-winning author Grace Young shares more than 100 classic stir-fry recipes that sizzle with heat and pop with flavor, from the great Cantonese stir-fry masters to the culinary customs of Sichuan, Hunan, Shanghai, Beijing, Fujian, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, Singapore, and Malaysia, as well as other countries around the world. With more than 80 stunning full-color photographs, Young’s definitive work illustrates the innumerable, easy-to-learn possibilities the technique offers—dry stir-fries, moist stir-fries, clear stir-fries, velvet stir-fries—and weaves the insights of Chinese cooking philosophy into the preparation of such beloved dishes as Kung Pao Chicken, Stir-Fried Beef and Broccoli, Chicken Lo Mein with Ginger Mushrooms, and Dry-Fried Sichuan Beans. In honoring the traditions of her cultural ancestors who traveled the globe, Young offers delectable crossover recipes for Chinese Jamaican Jerk Chicken Fried Rice, Chinese Trinidadian Stir-Fried Shrimp with Rum, Chinese Burmese Chili Chicken, and Chinese American Shrimp with Lobster Sauce.
Expert home cooks and professional chefs teach you the foundations of stir-fry mastery in the modern kitchen—everything from how to choose, season, and care for a wok and the best skillet alternative; the importance of marinades and the proper technique for slicing meat and poultry for optimum tenderness; to how to select and handle Asian vegetables; ways to shortcut labor-intensive preparations; and tips on how to control heat and choose the best cooking oil.
Fascinating personal portraits illustrate how stir-frying is not just a cooking technique but a vital element of China’s rich culture. With this book, Grace Young has created the authoritative guide to stir-frying, a work that is at once rewarding and beautiful, much like the technique of stir-frying itself.
stir frying with confidence & inspiration
By Charles Gibbs "Charles Gibbs, MD" - June 16, 2010
After purchasing this book, I have had a hard time cooking from any other. To date, I have made: minced pork in lettuce cups; stir-fried beef & broccoli; stir-fried chicken with pineapple and peppers; chinese trinidadian chicken with mango chutney; five spice chicken with sugar snaps; chinese jamaican stir-fried chicken with chayote; stir-fried chicken with carrots & mushrooms; chinese burmese chili chicken; stir-fried salmon in wine sauce; dry-fried pepper & salt shrimp; singapore-style stir-fried lobster; spicy long beans with sausage and mushrooms; fried sweet rice with mushrooms; and singapore noodles. No dish has disappointed. The recipes are clear and concise, the backgrounds giving more appreciation for each dish, and the photography approaches the pornographic for glorious color & close-ups of the food. That said (I may be biased), my dishes have looked remarkably close to the pictures. I haven't had this much fun cooking from a book in a long time. So. . .buy the... read more
By KarenSantaFe "KarenSantaFe" - June 17, 2010
Back in the 70s and early 80s, the wok was all the rage. Then in one of my many youthful moves, I lost mine and never thought about it again. Not, that is, until this book came along.
Grace Young's book is great for the first-time wok cook, or for those like me who are rediscovering Asian cooking. The opening section has clear explanations and color photographs on the different kinds of woks, how to season a wok, wok tools, and wok variations in different countries. She provides a very handy list of Asian ingredients, with explantions for each and substitutions that can be used for some. The recipes are clearly written, accessible to the western cook, and lots and lots of color photos which I particularly appreciate. At the back is a resource list of stores and web sites.
I called one of these -- The Wok Shop in San Francisco's Chinatown -- and the store owner, Tane, who is also featured in one of the pictures in the book, was very helpful in helping me... read more
WOW can I Wok Now
By Laura A. Cornaggia - June 4, 2010
I loved this book. Stir Fying to the Skys Edge. I have been cooking for 30 years with what I thought was a pretty good knowledge of stir frying. I love my wok and use it a couple of times a month. This Book without a doubt has helped me bring my cooking to a whole other level. The recipes are great but there is so much more to be learned in this book. Grace Young makes you want to run to the store and prepare a great healthy meal. She makes it interesting and easy to cook all your old favorites plus and ton of new dishes. Lets face it what cook does not love a one dish meal??? Great Book. I am buying this book for all my future wedding shower gifts.