Q&A: Hearty read

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01 October 2009
Hearty read

Fushia Dunlop has been described as the Claudia Roden of Chinese cuisine. Her explorations of the provinces of Sichuan (Land of Plenty) and Hunan (Revolutionary Chinese Cookbook) are classics. She will be in Sydney for the Sydney International Food Festival's World Chef Showcase this month.

Why China?
It was an accident. I became interested through a job at the BBC, started learning Mandarin and fell in love with the country
on my first visit there.

How often do you visit?
About three times a year.

Most amazing meal in China?
One of the countless banquets at my friend Yu Bo’s restaurant in Chengdu [Yu Bo will also be attending the Sydney Food Festival]. Also the lunch in Chengdu, the Sichuanese capital, in 1993, which convinced me that I had to go and live in the city – a simple but delicious affair, involving fish braised in chilli bean sauce, fish-fragrant aubergines and other local dishes.

Favourite Chinese comfort food?
Buckwheat noodles with spicy seasonings, with a fried egg on top.

Your favourite restaurant when in Beijing?
Da Dong for roast duck.

In Shanghai?
Fu 1088, an elegant restaurant in a former colonial mansion.

Ingredients/cookwares that you always bring back from China?
Sichuan pepper and facing heaven chillies, cleavers, tea leaves and bamboo chopsticks.

Favourite cookbook/cookware shop?
Kitchen Arts & Letters in New York, or Books For Cooks in London.

What are you reading?
The Gift by Lewis Hyde, The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan, and Love In A Fallen City by Eileen Chang.

Fuchsia Dunlop will be in Sydney for the Sydney International Food Festival’s World Chef Showcase this month.

Sydney International Food Festival website

Fuchsia Dunlop website


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