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Art of Chinese cookery James, W. C. 1920

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T T"% ITH the growth of the popular-
%Jk& ity of Chinese dishes, there has
developed a keen interest in
Chinese Cookery.
This is only natural, as it is for a
housewife to want to know the contents and the receipe for making any
new delicacy which she eats at the
home of a friend or in a  popular cafe.
Many people have formed the mistaken idea that there is a mystery about
the Cookery of China, that the for-,
mulae for Chop Suey and Chow Mein
are professional secrets that we are
afraid to divulge. Nothing could be
farther from the truth. There is no
mystery about the contents of Chop
Suey or any other Chinese dish that
we are not willing to impart to those
who wish to prepare these delicacies in
their own kitchens.
These dishes and their ingredients
are all peculiar to China whose customs
were firmly established a thousand
years before the beginning of the
Christian era. For this reason many
people look on Chinese dishes as novelties to tempt the appetite, but give
them no serious consideration from the
point of view of food values.
We wish to correct this impression
as well as to impart the information so
generally desired as to the real nature
of Chinese Cookery, to convince its
devotees that they are wise in their
choice and to induce those who have
not yet done so, to give their palates
the pleasure that comes from the taste
of real Chinese dishes prepared in "an
original Chinese way.
It is for this purpose that we have
prepared this booklet, and we present
it for your consideration.
ID. C. James
4* *_*4«4«4«**i-4-4-4«4«4«4- «4-4«f-»_«_«f«|.-
Of Historical and
Qenerai Interest
TT is interesting to note how often, when some
new discovery by some Occidental Scientist
is heralded by the Western World, a careful
search of the records of Chinese wisdom discloses the fact that the "new discovery" has
been a part of the daily life of China for so
many generations that its origin is lost in the
mists of antiquity. Countless ones of the
West's most prized Arts and Sciences are
based on the practices of China, are no more
than old Chinese ideas dressed up and elaborated for Occidental edification.
Within the memory of all of
us there has arisen a new and
widespread interest in foods and
food values. We hear learned
talk of balanced rations, of the
proper proportions of carbohydrates, fats and proteids. Housewives have turned to the preparation of meals that will properly nourish all parts of the body.
Meals are considered in terms of
1 calories. The old system of too
much pie and cake and not
enough of coarse vegetables ha3
been banished together with the
horsehair furniture and the iron
deer on the lawn. This is as it
should be and the American people are becoming more efficient
human beings because they are
fed more scientifically.
The idea of the "balanced ration" was hailed as a distinct discovery when it was introduced to
-. «.-,_•,_ 4    THE   ART   OF   CHINESE   COOKERY
America by teachers of Domestic Economy, yet,
in common with the art of printing and the
science of tea culture, it has been in daily use
in China for thousands of years. These combinations of Chinese foods are nothing but the
perfect balanced ration, blended and mixed into
one dish. These dishes are the staple articles of
diet in China, among high and low alike, just as
steak and baked potato are the staples of this
country and England.
Necessity—mother of Invention
Where   or   when   arose   the   idea   of   combining  all   of   the   necessary   foods   into   one
dish,  we  have  no  means of knowing,  but it
is  probable   that   the  practice  had   its   origin
in    the    necessity    of    conserving
time and labor, which is the first
lesson   taught   a   Chinese   child.
Foods thus combined were  more
quickly  eaten  and  less  time  was
taken   from   the    hard,    grinding
work    of    the    fields    and    boats.
Then,    too,    some   of   the   ingredients  of these dishes would not
be   palatable   if   eaten  alone,   yet
being    necessary   to    the   proper
, nourishment     of   the   body,   they
J were mixed with the other foods
>and so became acceptable.
The results of eating this nour-
1      cup Chicken Meat.
lVn cups   Celery.
%' cup Bamboo  Sprouts.
% cup Bean   Sprouts.
l/2 cup Water Chestnuts.
XA cup Mushrooms.
Chop   meat  and  vegetables   separately.
Fry    meat    in    hot    peanut    oil.      Acid,
chopped   vegetables   and  pour   in   one   to
one   and   one-half   cups   of   water.     Boil
ishing ration from year's end to year's end is
seen in the marvelous endurance of the Chinese
and their ability to perform tasks that would
kill the average Westerner, and to remain
healthy and strong to the very end.
When you are eating Chinese dishes you are
eating the balanced ration in its most perfect
and appetizing form. It has been claimed that
these dishes are inventions and not Chinese.
These dishes as prepared by us are all fundamentally Chinese. In matters such as seasoning, variations have been made to suit the
American palate. Aside from these changes,
original Chinese recipes have been followed.
I .American
Chinese dishes came here with
the first Chinese who were
brought over to work on the
Trans-continental Railroads, but
they were never really introduced
to Americans until the visit of
Li Hung Chang, the great Chinese Statesman. The great Li
was too old to adapt himself to I
American dishes, so he carried a"
staff of cooks and a supply of the
for ten minutes. Add gravy made of J~ \
V4 teaspoonful salt and 1 teaspoonful _TV
sugar, 2 tablespoonfuls soy bean sauce,
1 tablespoonful corn starch, and % teaspoonful Chinese molasses. Dissolve
these in one-half cup of water, let entire
mixture come to a boil. Serve with side
dish  of rice.
Special Chop Sueys may be made by
adding the desired ingredients, such as
green peppers, beef, black mushrooms,
eto. 6    THE   ART   OF   CHINESE   COOKERY
ingredients of his favorite dishes with him. His
food aroused the curiosity of the Americans with
whom he came in contact and he was flooded
with inquiries as to what each dish was made
of, and as a final courtesy to those who had
entertained him in this country, he decided to
give a real Chinese dinner, cooked and served
by his own staff and made up exclusively of
Chinese foods.
Dinners and Diplomacy
That dinner was epochal in its effect. It
started the development of the popularity
that is now accorded to Chinese cookery
wherever lovers of good living congregate.
And because the great Li started the fad, all
Chinese cafes were for years known as Li
Hung Chang Chop Suey Houses.
Beginning   as   a   fad we   can   all
remember the days when a trip to
a Chop Suey house was considered a mild form of dissipation—
the popularity of Chinese dishes
is now firmly established.
From the first Chinese restaurant that was opened in the Chicago Loop district twenty years
| ago, there has developed a chain
. of similar restaurants covering
the entire country. Where once
these cafes looked to the transient
Prepare as for Chop Suey, using same
ingredients which should, however, be
chopped finer. When gravy has been
added and allowed to come to a boil,
serve on top of fresh fried noodles, fried
in hot, deep lard or peanut oil. Garnish with strips of white meat of boiled
chicken, fried egg, roast pork and green
and the night life of the cities for their trade;
this element has almost disappeared. Chinese
cafes now have their regular clientel, just as do
the best American cafes. Many business men
eat Chinese dishes for their daily luncheons and
it is nothing out of the ordinary to see business
leaders in serious conference over the table of
a Chinese cafe, where a generation ago such a
thing was unheard of. Women have come
to look on the Chinese restaurant and a cup
of tea as the logical wind-up of a day's shopping or as a fitting climax to a matinee. In
other words, Chinese cookery has won out
on its merits.
Introduced as a fad, it has become a stable
business involving the investment of millions
of dollars. Strange to say, the
biggest and best of these restaurants are not on the Pacific coast
but are scattered through the
Middle   West.
Oriental Foods-—Occidental
Contrary   to   general   opinion,
the   Chinese   cooks  are   the   most
fastidious in the care with which
they prepare foodstuffs.   It is safe j
to say that the average of clean-
Chop together vegetables as for Chop
Suey, with any one kind of meat or fish.
Beat up two eggs and stir into mixture
to moisten. Drop y2 cup at time of
mixture into deep, hot fat, peanut oil
or lard, and fry to crisp brown. Serve
with gravy made as for Chop Suey,
using a full instead of half cup of
NOTE—Any of the ingredients of the
above dishes may be purchased from us.
Inquire of the waiter. S    THE   ART   OF   CHINESE   COOKERY
liness in the kitchens of Chinese restaurants is
higher than is that in the kitchens of the rank
and file of American cafes. All of the ingredients of Chinese dishes, whether imported from
China or purchased in the American markets,
are handled with the most scrupulous care. No
expense has been spared in the equipment of
kitchens and the latest and most approved
American sanitary devices have been adapted
to the preparation of Chinese foods as well
as in the equipment of the elaborate American kitchens that all first-class Chinese cafes
now maintain for those who have not yet
learned to appreciate Chinese foods. Any
good Chinese cafe will welcome your inspection of its kitchens.
We invite you to inspect ours.
Chinese Foodstuffs and
THE ingredients of all of the
more    popular     Chinese
dishes are the  same.     The
difference in flavor is due to the
manner in which they are cooked
and the meat that is used in them.
Rice is best when cooked in the  Chinese  fashion.    Wash  the  rice,   using  at
least ten changes of water, and rubbing
%}ihe   rice   well   with   each   change.     Put
• into   heavy   iron   kettle   and   cover  with
% inch of water.    Put over hot fire and
boil until rice is  almost dry.    Turn fire
Tow and  allow  it to  stand for from 20
to 30 minutes.    Never stir rice when it
is   cooking.     When   done   the   bottom   of
the   kettle   should   have    a   coating   of
browned rice.     This  may  be  made  into
rice  tea by  the   addition  of  a  quart  of
boiling  water.
The basis of these dishes is a combination of
Celery, Bamboo Shoots, Mushrooms, Chinese
Water Chestnuts, Chinese Potatoes, Bean
Sprouts, Chinese Molasses and Corn Starch combined with a Soy Bean Sauce. The vegetables
are boiled in a broth and combined with the
desired meats, which are fried in peanut oil.
This combination served -with rice is what is
commonly called Chop Suey. As will be
readily seen by anyone interested in dietetics,
all of the necessary food elements are supplied and combined in the most appetizing
manner to tempt the palate and nourish the
body properly.
The name Chop Suey may be applied to
any similar mixture of meats and vegetables.
The word Chop comes from the
Chinese dop, meaning fine. Suey
means mixture. Hence the name
Chop Suey freely translated
means Fine Mixture.
Chow Mein (Chow—Fried;
Mein—Noodle). The same combination as goes to make up
Chop Suey, with the addition of
the fine fried noodles that are
served under the mixture.
War Mein (War Boiled; Mein
—Noodle). This combination is
the same as Chow Mein, but the
noodles served with it are boiled
instead of fried.
Mince ham or any desired meat. Fry
in lard until brown. Add bowl of boiled
rice. Before removing from fire add cup
of chopped green onions and two eggs
well   beaten   and   brown. 10    THE   ART   OF   CHINESE   COOKERY
Eggs Foyoung. This is a dish made by combining eggs and finely chopped vegetables into
a cake which is fried and served with a pan
Fried Rice and Mushrooms.   This is  best described   by   its   name.      It   is   a   combination   of
chopped meats, eggs, boiled rice and mushrooms
fried in peanut oil.
Sub Gum (Sub—Ten; Gum—Varieties).
This is a dish made of the same ingredients
as go into Chop Suey, with the exception of
the preparation of the vegetables and meats
for the pan. For Sub Gum the ingredients
are diced instead of chopped as for the other
dishes of similar nature. Otherwise this dish
is    made    as    one    makes    Chow Mein.
Yacta Mein (Y act a—One;
Mein—Noodle). This combination differs a little from the previous dishes. It consists of boiled
noodles with the addition of
chicken broth and eggs or chopped meats served on top.
All of the ingredients of these
dishes can be purchased from us
by those who wish to try Chinese
I cooking at home. Recipes for
the popular combinations will be
found on bottom of pages  1  to  7.
About QTe
We are frequently asked for
information regarding teas and
asked to advise as to the best
brands to buy. Most brands of
tea are created by the packers
who make extravagant claims for
them.     Natural   Chinese  Tea,   as
"" *" $k$
*i ^''U^w.
served by us, falls into four classes, -which cover
all teas with the exception of the colored or
black teas, and the special blend of importers.
It should be borne in mind that no real Chinese
tea is ever colored.     It is always green.
The   finest  teas  that   can  be   secured   in   this
country are the early shoots or leaves  that are
just emerging from  the bud.     These are picked
by   hand,   one   leaf  at   a   time,   and   carefully
dried  over a  slow  fire.     As  the  season progresses  and the  leaves  grow  larger  they are
picked again, but this picking is of the coarser  leaves  and  goes  to  make  up  the  cheaper
common teas of commerce.    The brands most
commonly served in Chinese cafes are:
Oolong    (Dark   Dry).      This   is   the   commonest of the better teas and the
one most in favor in this country.
Long Soo (Dragon's Whiskers). This tea takes its name
from the appearance of the
leaves in the package. After the
drying has been completed the
leaves are hand gathered into
long, cigar shaped bunches and
wrapped in silk for the market.
This is a very fine tea and one
that becomes more and more \
popular with people of discriminating taste.
Soysun.     This  is   a   very   mild
tea;     the     name     means     "Mild
Ladies'   Tea,"   and   one   that   in-    y* x
creases     in     popularity     among *f)
those    who    appreciate    the    real
aroma of fine tea.
Perfumed. As the name implies, this is a very select tea perfumed with Gook Far or Ylang
blossoms. The addition of these
blossoms   adds   a   piquant   flavor 12   THE   ART   OF   CHINESE   COOKERY
that must be tried to  be appreciated.     This is
a very popular tea with Chinese epicures.
Cliffs and Clouds
The very finest of all teas is known among
Chinese as White Cloud Tea. It is very doubtful
if any of this tea has ever reached this country.
Very little of it is grown and that in the most
mountainous parts of China where the natives
risk their lives to cultivate the gardens that
seem to hang to the sides of the gigantic
cliffs, right up under the roof of the world.
Its flavor has long been the delight of the
wealthiest class of Chinese gourmets, and it
brings in the neighborhood of two hundred
dollars per pound.
Chinese Confections
Chinese foods are not confined
to the staples and to teas. The
Chinese have long been famous
for their confections and their
skill in preserving fruits. Many
of these delicacies cannot be imported on account of the difference in climate existing between
this country and China, but many
of them are readily available and
j make an ideal dessert after the
• more substantial Chow Mein has
been disposed of.
If you have not yet done so,
order some Gom Gots (Dwarf
%*\ Oranges preserved in Syrup), a
little Candied Ginger Root, some
Almond Cakes or some Lichee
Nuts with a pot of Long Soo or
Guck Far. One of these delicacies will provide the fitting
climax to your Chinese luncheon
or dinner.
. «<M. j
Birds Nest Soup
This delight of Chinese Epicures can be enjoyed by American lovers of good living right
here in our own dining-room.
This soup is made from the nest of the Chinese Sea-swallow. This little bird inhabits the
bleak caves on the coast of the Yellow sea where
there is practically no material of which nests
can be constructed. Nature has solved this
difficulty by placing in the mouth of the bird
little glands which secrete a gummy material
that looks and tastes like gelatin. Contrary
to the popular idea there is no straw or any
similar material used in these nests. The
hunters watch the caves during the nesting
season and as soon as a nest is
completed    they    take    it    down.
The little bird promptly builds
another which is also taken from
her. Three nests will be built
in a season and the last is left for
the birds to use in order to keep
them in the cave. Used nests are
unfit for food.
Dissolved in water and seasoned properly these nests make
a delicious soup, nourishing and
palatable. We can prepare it,
but owing to the fact that the
nests must be soaked for two
hours before they are soft enough ^ .
to use, we must have notice in^ )
advance of meal time. >—-— H    THE   ART   OF    CHINESE    COOKERY
In Conclusion
You have read our little treatise. We hope
that you have found in it the answer to many
of the questions that have aroused your curiosity
in the past.
We hope that you have learned something
that will not only increase your stock of general
information, but that the peiusal of this little
book has increased your respect for the culture of China and for the tireless effort that
her scientists have been forced to devote
to the problem of making possible life for the
teeming  millions that populate  her  soil.
We trust that in doing these, that you have
also   added  to  your  ability   to   enjoy  life  and
the things  that she  has  provided
for your enjoyment.
Every civilization, yes even the
most primitive, has something to
give us. How much more then
should we expect from the
world's oldest extant civilization.
Others have written of the Art,
the Sciences and the Social organization     of     China    and     the
\ world has profited from  their ef-
i forts.
We leave those subjects to
those who are bettc able to treat
of them than we are. Our
specialty is foods. We write of
what we know be_t. Therefore
if by increasing your ability to
stay the cravings of the stomach
so that you may find leisure to
feed the soul, we are content.
4- ■
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The pick of Chinese Foods prepared
by  Chinese Cooks.
The proper blending of Occidental
Comfort and Oriental Beauty to ensure
the  completeness  of your  pleasure.
An unusually well equipped American Kitchen where the best American
Cooking is practiced for those who do
not care for Chinese dishes.
Our Miniature Symphony Orchestia
with a complete library of Popular and
Classical Music for your selection.
Prompt, courteous service by waiters
who are trained to consider your
wishes and  comfort as paramount.
An   entire   and   complete   willingness
to   listen   to   suggestions   that   will   improve    our    service    and    add    to    your       ►{*
•fr*fr4-4*4*4«4-4*4'4,>fr4-*]-'I •_^4-4*4-*4*4-4*fc_-4**^^^4-4-4*4*a*4-^^ /


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