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Asian Foods: Science and Technology

by: edited by: Ang, Catharina Y.W.; Liu, KeShun; and Huang, Yao-Wen

Lancaster PA: Technomic Publishing Co. 1999, $90.00, Hardbound
ISBN: 1-56676-736-9

Reviewed by: Jacqueline M. Newman
Fall Volume: 1999 Issue: 6(3) page(s): 22

Sixteen chapters, including the introduction, offer a plethora of information about the foods of Asia. This book details rice products, wheat products, other staple foods, soy foods, meat, poultry, egg and seafood products, fruit and vegetables, fats and oils, alcoholic beverages, Chinese functional foods, health implications of Asian diets, and cultural aspects of Asian dietary habits.

Twenty people from both sides of the Pacific, including the editors, contribute to this detailed and well-referenced volume. It should be in every food scientist's and every manufacturer's library. Though not all-inclusive, and what book ever is, this book even belongs in the library of every non-professional interested in knowing about the more than four hundred varieties of Asian prepared foods discussed in it. Reading helps to gain breadth and depth about specific prepared foods and the base items they are made of. It also advises about the health and cultural aspects of the more than a dozen Asian diets discussed in its five hundred forty-six pages.

Flavor and Fortune’s editor-in-chief wrote the chapter titled: Cultural Aspects of Asian Dietary Habits. That is a topic she lectures on frequently. Other authors, also experts in their fields, wrote other chapters such as KeShun Liu, who authored the book titled Soybeans which was reviewed in Flavor and Fortune's Volume 6(2) on page 14. His chapter is titled Oriental Soyfoods. Sidi Huang of the Asian Food Laboratory at the Bread Research Institute of Australia wrote the chapter titled: Wheat Products: Breads, Cake, Cookies, Pastries, and Dumplings. Tsun-chieh Chen in the Poultry Science Department at Mississippi State University wrote the chapter titled: Traditional Poultry and Egg Products. Others, equally competent and alone or in small groups authored the other chapters. With growing interest in Asian prepared foods and increased cultural and business exchanges, a comprehensive book on this topic is long overdue. This volume meets that void and concentrates on prepared food product origins, preparation methods, processing techniques, technical innovations, quality issues, nutritional value, market potential, cultural background, and more. It provides reader understandings and can assist in business development; also promote cultural exchange and knowledge, and provide current technical background about foods so rich in tradition.

Though the emphasis is about ingredient formulations, there is more than enough introductory material about the origin and classification of items under discussion to make this book a valuable reference for all. We recommend it highly.

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