Thursday, 25 July 2013

Cookbook Challenge Week 30 - Authentic Chinese Cuisine

This week I have been cooking from Authentic Chinese Cuisine (all Vegan recipes) by Bryanna Clark Grogan, I bought this book from Viva several years ago and have been looking forward to using it since. But haven't. Mostly due to my inexperience in the kitchen, but over the last year or two that has changed so I decided to try this book out. I made 7 of the recipes with mixed results:

Shao Bing (Northern Chinese Sesame Buns) - I was really looking forward to these and the taste was great, the texture however was awful. Just like old cardboard (I know my father works in a cardboard factory). I threw most of these away:

Chinese Style Beef Seitan - again this was another disappointing recipe, the taste was good but the texture was awful - like chewing Chinese flavour glue. I would definitely add some soya or chickpea flour in future to soften this:  

Scramble or Authentic Foo Yung - I have had Foo Yung several times before I was Vegan but I've only had homemade since, usually containing more "egg" than other ingredients which is how it was when I went to Chinese takeaways, this however was the other way around, less "egg" and more filling and it was just lovely. Full of flavour and very enjoyable, served with Tilda rice (very lazy but there you go): 

Basic Fried Rice - Again this is something that I had quite a lot of before turning Vegan and haven't really had it since. This recipe was really good, tofu in place of egg and soya chiken instead of actual chicken. I really enjoyed this and served it with Uncle Bens Brown Rice (again lazy but again there you go):

Chow Mein - I have never had this before so I didn't know what to expect. What I got was plateful of tofu with a lovely spicy (but not too spicy sauce), I served mine with rice noodles:

Oyster sauce - I don't have any pictures of this as it was a base ingredient in 2 recipes (chow mein & beef in oyster sauce) but it was great, I have never had real oyster sauce but this was full of flavour so is just as good.

Beef & Broccoli in Oyster Sauce - This recipe used both the sauce from above and the Chinese beef seitan (which worked well in this recipe when cut up small) and it made a delicious dinner which left my plate rather quickly, I served mine with rice noodles:

Overall I did like this book, some of the recipes are a bit hit & miss but what I really liked was that the recipes felt more authentic than the premade shite that you buy in supermarkets. Some of the recipes I will certainly be making again and I will be testing some of the others as well.


  1. That's a great selection of recipes - shame about the buns though, I was hoping they were going to turn out phenomenal. Glad the oyster sauce turned out well - I see loads of recipes on Chinese menus were the oyster sauce is listed as veggie, then you have to go and quiz the people working there on whether they classify an oyster as a vegetable or not!

    1. It was a shame about the buns, but I'm glad to have found a good vegan oyster sauce recipe!