Perfecting East and Southeast Asian Cuisine
Authentic East and Southeast Asian cooking can be an exciting, but daunting adventure. Don't let your eagerness to make your first sushi roll or your first batch of kimchi be hampered by the fear of not finding the proper ingredients or kitchen gadgets. Each of these books will tell you how you can get your hands on everything you need!
Yum-Yum Bento All Year Round: Box Lunches for Every Season by Crystal Watanabe and Maki Ogawa
When they say "for every season," they mean it! This book is divided into four sections (spring, summer, fall and winter) and has over 50 recipes for your enjoyment. While bento boxes are traditionally Japanese, these recipes include an array of ingredients that you likely already have in your homes. You'll also find a section explaining all of the tools you might want or need, including food dividers, rice paddles, and different types of bento boxes. Best of all, this book explains how you can prep some of your ingredients the night before, and create cute characters like the ones on the cover of this book!
Sushi Modern by Hideo Dekura
Sushi Modern calls sushi the “Japanese equivalent to the Western sandwich” -- it's a staple Japanese food with an unlimited amount of variations. Dekura's book takes you away from the idea that sushi is strictly raw fish and rice, and explains how the art of sushi making has evolved to what it is today. While some of these recipes include ingredients that you would typically think of when it comes to sushi, there are recipes that incorporate more surprising fillings, including cheddar cheese, sirloin, pastrami and strawberry jam. Bonus: this book also includes tips on hosting a sushi-making party!
Simple Thai Food: Classic Recipes from the Thai Home Kitchen by Leela Punyaratabandhu
If you're looking to try Thai, Simple Thai Food is a great way to introduce yourself to the cuisine! This book is overflowing with recipes for soups, salads, noodles, and desserts. Before each recipe is a short food-related story from the author, cooking tips, or historical tid-bits. The author even goes as far as explaining how to make certain ingredients from scratch, like coconut milk. Of course, that means you'll have to locate and purchase a whole coconut. Possibly time consuming, but worth it if you're up for the challenge! If you'd rather just buy your ingredients, she has included websites where you can purchase the ingredients and gadgets that might be harder to find.
Cook Korean! A Comic Book with Recipes by Robin Ha
If you're a reluctant cook who doesn't really know where to start when it comes to Korean food, this graphic novel cookbook might be your saving grace. Ha had little desire to learn how to cook until she was a young adult, but she still lacked cooking confidence. She wrote this book because she didn't want others to be afraid of cooking Korean food. Ha takes you through over sixty recipes, including Korean staples like kimchi, Korean bbq and rice cakes. She also explains Korean side dishes and shows you what is found within a typical Korean refrigerator. Despite the fact that it's a book of recipes, it's surprisingly easy to read the entire book in one sitting. Ha has woven the tiniest bit of narrative into each comic, which makes the recipes that much more interesting and easy to follow.
Maangchi's Real Korean Cooking: Authentic Dishes for the Home Cook by Maangchi
Wouldn't it be nice if a recipe book came with instructional videos? In this case, it does! Maangchi has been showing the world how to cook delicious Korean food on her YouTube channel for almost ten years and she conveniently demonstrates recipes included in her book (and then some) on her YouTube channel. Like most of the recipe books mentioned here, she explains Korean kitchen staples and where you can find them or substitute them if you're not in Korea. Within this 300-page book, she'll teach you how to make rice and noodle dishes, side dishes, party foods, and more! If instructional videos aren't your thing, don't worry! Maangchi has included vibrant photos that will guide you through the process as well.