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Home cook's guide to Chinese food

Chinese Food Made Easy by Ross Dobson is the home cook’s guide to Chinese food that’s simple to make, packed with flavour and delicious to share.

Taking favourite recipes from each of China's diverse culinary regions, Ross Dobson simplifies them so you can recreate them with ease at home. Including expert guidance on finding and selecting the key ingredients to stock your pantry, plus step-by-step guides to essential techniques such as blanching greens and making dumplings, this book will have you turning out favourite dishes like spicy Shanghai noodles, fragrant beef hotpot and Hainan chicken rice in no time. Also included is a detailed meal planner with suggestions on how to put together a truly fabulous Chinese feast.

Ross Dobson is the bestselling author of numerous Murdoch Books cookbooks. He is also a recipe developer, prep chef and caterer with the special skill of creating flavour-packed recipes that are designed specifically with the home cook in mind.

Bean curd spring rolls

These vegan spring rolls are made from bean curd sheets (or skins). You need to look for soft sheets and the best way to test for this is to bend them in the packet. They should not break or crack when bent. One packet will have more than four sheets but they can be stored in an airtight bag for later use.

Serves: 8 (as a starter)

Preparation: 30 minutes

Cooking: 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

1 carrot, coarsely grated

1 celery stick, finely sliced

150g finely sliced Chinese cabbage

4 fresh shiitake mushrooms, finely sliced

2 spring onions, finely sliced Chilli and Soy Sauce to serve (see recipe below)

Vegetable oil, for frying 3 teaspoons plain flour

1 teaspoon light soy sauce 4 bean curd skins

METHOD:

• Heat the vegetable oil in a wok over high heat. Swirl the wok around so that it is coated in oil. Add the carrot, celery, cabbage, mushrooms and spring onions and stir-fry for 3–4 minutes until all the vegetables are tender.

• Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of the flour over the vegetables and stir-fry to combine. Add the soy sauce and 3 tablespoons of water and stir- fry for 1 minute until the mixture has thickened. Transfer to a bowl and leave to cool.

• Cut 4 squares from the bean curd, each measuring about 30cm. Lay them on a clean work surface and wipe with a damp cloth to soften them slightly.

• Combine the remaining flour with 2 teaspoons of cold water in a bowl. Brush around the edges of the bean curd.

• Put one-quarter of the filling in the centre of each bean curd square. Fold the edge nearest you up and over the filling, fold the sides in, then roll up into a log shape.

• Add enough oil to come one-third up the side of a wok and heat over medium–high heat. The oil is ready when a cube of bread turns golden brown in 10–15 seconds. Add the rolls and cook for 5 minutes, turning them so they cook to an even golden colour. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel. Serve with the Chilli and Soy Sauce.

Chilli and soy sauce

Small fresh red chillies are used here. They can be super hot, so remove the seeds if you want to reduce the heat but keep all the flavour.

Makes: 125ml

Preparation: 2 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

2 small red chillies, finely sliced 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped 1 spring onion, finely chopped

3 tablespoons light soy sauce

½ teaspoon caster sugar

METHOD:

Combine the ingredients in a bowl, stirring until the sugar has dissolved. Cover and refrigerate for 2–3 days.

Chinese Food Made Easy by Ross Dobson Published by Murdoch Books RRP: $45