Eating Up Asia

Published in Gourmet Live 01.18.12
We’re visiting China, Kurdistan, India, and Vietnam with expert food guides, including Madhur Jaffrey, Nina Simonds, and Matt Gross

For food lovers, one of the great joys of travel is hunting down the ultimate example of a destination’s quintessential dish. Inspired by Lunar New Year, we’re Eating Up Asia in an issue filled with just such unforgettable meals. Our voyage East begins with Michael Y. Park’s quest for a storied morsel of meat from a sheep’s derrière—a delicacy in Kurdistan.

Park resorted to charades when his language skills failed to produce the goods, while travel writer Matt Gross—the former “Frugal Traveler” and current “Getting Lost” columnist for The New York Times—explains how using his rudimentary Vietnamese on taxi drivers has helped him discover the best phở, grilled pork chops, spring rolls, and cold rice noodles in Ho Chi Minh City.

Nina Simonds, the author of numerous China-inspired cookbooks, including the new Simple Asian Meals, faced other challenges for our latest installment of “24 Hours in…”—namely, nibbling her way through the vast metropolis of Beijing. She delivers a day’s worth of new finds, from haute regional fare to simpler Sichuan pleasures and street food.

More than a thousand miles afield from the capital, Josey Miller takes us on a visual tour of Hong Kong’s prized produce and reveals what to do with these ingredients here at home.

Also in this issue, we’re honored to feature the writing of Madhur Jaffrey, a legendary authority on Indian cuisine. Jaffrey focuses on the cuisine of the lush Konkan Coast, stretching south from Mumbai to Mangalore, where the fish curries, fresh coconut chutney, and dosas sing with the seasons.

Just a stone’s throw south lies the state of Kerala, the inspiration for our exclusive new collection of vegetarian recipes from esteemed cookbook author Maya Kaimal. The 12 dishes comprise an entire menu—including Seasoned Lentil Stew with Vegetables, dhal, pappadams, and Cardamom Rice Pudding with Almonds and Raisins—in honor of the region’s traditional feast of Sadhya.

What Asian dishes are simmering in your kitchen? Tempt us via Twitter or Facebook, drop us a line (, or post a comment on our blog.

Enjoy the tour!

The Editors of Gourmet Live

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