Our food and recipe adventures take us sometimes to the most unknown and unexpected places. Largely thanks to the “traveling mind” that we have grown so accustomed to. If you are not sure what you mean, try trecking around the world in at least ten countries and get to know the local people. Your mind will be changed for ever, and your taste for food will take on an international aspect that can see things from a totally new light. At least, that’s what happened to us. That, which in fact has enable us to embrace everything that’s new and inspiring. And if one culinary gendre belongs to this exciting group, it is the term fusion cooking!
Another thing that’s important to note, is that not all fusion is good. Especially failure is present in food where there is a lack of true culture knowledge. You can see that all over China, because most people who open up restaurants either have never travelled or lack a profound experience of food travel. While I am in no ways wanting to put myself higher than other people, it is simply a true fact that having travelled in a way that connects with a local way of life is far superior. There are many stories to be told, but one experience that is sort of fundamental in the journey that started for me in terms of understanding food culture is Italy. One might think that Chinese and Italian cooking are far apart, but all it takes is an old and historical piece of culture and undoutedly you can connect it with many corners of the world.
Then there are those who speak only of experience, which is another misunderstanding in our opinion. I have not just travelled, experienced and cooked to make it this far. One of the most important parts of becoming a truly good cheff that is able to transfor recipies in a novel and fusion filled way.. is reading books of course. There is a mountain of great literature just waiting to be picked and absorbed. Each writing will add to the total sum of infinate possibilities. It is reading, that will never stop and I have to say a huge thanks to Amazon for providing such an amazing selection of rare books that have made my life so much better over the many years of being a professional. For those who are not that familiar with Italian cooking, or cannot afford to travel there for extended periods of time. Again, books come in as the second best tool and friend in getting closed to the culture experience. And for that I cannot recommend enough the wonderful collection at Amazon Italy, which is far more superior than the one in the American Amazon store for example. There is a new Chinese e-commerce platform as well I have heard, but we haven’t had the opportunity to try it out as of yet.
The first shock that might come to you as you enter the Amazon store, is that the whole website is in Italian. But don’t worry, this is only a minor obstacle! And in fact, there are many books in English as well as there is a very good article about how to access Amazon Italy in English which is extremely helpful. I have used this article many times, and they show you different ways to do it for both Mac, and Windows users with Google Chrome or Mozilla Firefox. It’s also good to know, that the helpdesk can speak very good English in case you have any problems ordering books from there.
To get you started and to enjoy good old memories of brilliant Italian recipe and cooking books that have helped to create my China/Italian fusion creations.. I am revealing the list of my best known books with a short description. So please, enjoy the world of Italian cooking together with Amazon.
The Definitive Professional Guide to Italian Ingredients and Cooking Techniques
Written by Carla Capalbo, Kate Whiteman & Jeni Wright.
For me, this is like the bible of Italian cooking bookings. Because it give syou the most extensive knowledge on the very fundamental basics that consists of 320 recipes and their unique techniques which can be applied to a huge number of other Italian cookings. If you can master this book, your knowledge is ready to go to the most ultimate level of being a professional, artist in a sense. These techniques cannot be missed, get this book if you are passionate about Italy.
La Cucina Italiana Encyclopedia of Italian Cooking
This is the second most important “bible” of sorts. It contains all the vital Italian cooking ingredients in beautiful pictures as well as tremendously accurate descriptions. I have never seen this level of detail and beauty put into a book that covers every possible ingredient that is put into conventional Italian food. This English language book (dispite it’s Italian language title) is a pure pleasure, and I could only find it from Amazon Italy!
Vegetarian cooking. 100 easy italian recipes
Written by Academia Barilla
This is no ordinary cooking recipe book. In my opinion it teaches a vital lession about how most of Italian food is traditionally vegetarian. Meaning, that if you cannot make amazing Italian dishes with only vegetables, you know nothing about the food culture there. Only once that is mastered, you are able to add meat and fish to the food. So don’t miss on this vital information if you want to get up and close with the cultural aspects.
So there you go. I decided to limit this list to three, to encourage concentration and dedication. That, along with excellent quality ingredients is something that can never stop you. Perhaps in the future, I will explain more in detail about my Chinese Italian creations. But for now, let’s get busy traveling to the cultural world of food. Thank you!
Nuo Min, Chinese Foods Recipes