Jun 14 • 29M

XO Soused S2 E4 - Song Dynasty recipes

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A fortnightly chat about techniques and dishes from a professional Chinese kitchen, their history and their cultural setting
Episode details

How do contemporary cooks interpret historically researched cookbooks? How relatable to contemporary dining are Song era historical recipes, and how far do recipe writers, cooks and chefs have to do this translation work? Andrew talks through a present day book of Song era recipes that he has been reviewing and researching as both he and Mukta explore how these recipes reflect Song dynasty social, economic, cultural and philosophical life.

How do these recipes draw from and sketch out the luxury markets that defined the era, as well as the clean-eating philosophies that developed in reaction to these rich diets? And, equally importantly, how does this cookbook - a complicated culinary snapshot of Song era cooking - capture the evolution of Han majoritarian cuisine against which all other Chinese cuisines have become ‘ethnic’, or ‘other’?

A section of the Qingming Shanghe Tu painting on silk scroll depicting a bridge packed full of food and drink vendors and pedestrians
A section of the Qingming Shanghe Tu [清明上河圖], said to be painted dueing the Song Dynasty reflecting the social worlds around China’s great cities. This section of the 5 metre-long scroll shows a bridge packed with pedestrians and travellers in sedan chairs and horses, and bordered on either side by food, drink, household goods and toy sellers. Source: Wikimedia via Commons

Intro and outro music: 遊子 [wanderer] by mafmadmaf.com

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