A Soup for the Qan: Introduction, Translation, Commentary, and Chinese Text
E. N. Anderson, Paul D. Buell
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Paul D. Buell and Eugene N. Anderson. With an appendix by Charles Perry.
In the early 14th century, a court nutritionist called Hu Sihui wrote his Yinshan Zhengyao, a dietary and nutritional manual for the Chinese Mongol Empire. Hu Sihui, a man apparently with a Turkic linguistic background, included recipes, descriptions of food items, and dietary medical lore including selections from ancient texts, and thus reveals to us the full extent of an amazing cross-cultural dietary; here recipes can be found from as far as Arabia, Iran, India and elsewhere, next to those of course from Mongolia and China. Although the medical theories are largely Chinese, they clearly show Near Eastern and Central Asian influence.
This long-awaited expanded and revised edition of the much-acclaimed A Soup for the Qan sheds (yet) new light on our knowledge of west Asian influence on China during the medieval period, and on the Mongol Empire in general.
thickener, and like most dishes in this section specifies aromatic nonglutinous rice, i.e., Basmati type as opposed to the much less markedly-flavored rice of China. Near Eastern and northwest Indian cooking, in which rice was then a luxury, usually call for a rice with a good flavor. The Chinese, for whom rice is common fare, prefer it not to taste too strongly since even the best flavor becomes tiresome eventually. The odd combination of turmeric, ground ginger, and saffron makes this dish
warming, and lack poison. They disperse food and bring down ch’i. They remove swelling of chest and abdomen and make one able to eat. [57A] [Illustration Caption:] Liquorice [Glycyrrhiza uralensis] Liquorice is sweetish in flavor, neutral, and lacks poison. It harmonizes the hundred medicines and counteracts the various poisons. [Illustration Caption:] Coriander Seeds196 Coriander Seeds are acrid [in flavor], warming, and lack poison. They disperse food, regulate insufficiency of the five
suggests the Chinese mien 麵, “noodle.” közmän: a cake cooked in ashes. kürsäk: millet boiled in water or milk and flavored with butter. kävsäk: a word meaning “limp” also used for a soft bread. letü: noodles chilled with water, snow or ice. The pronunciation of this word is uncertain; the first element, at least, may be Chinese: leng 冷, cold.” sincü: a bread described as being between flatbread and loaf bread. suma: malted wheat or barley for porridge, bread or beer. The second syllable is
Flavors” (26a–50b). Most, as we shall see, are of Middle Eastern inspiration if not origin. Chüan 2 (1a–52a) begins with recipes for fifty-seven drinks and liquid foods (“Various Hot Beverages and Concentrates”) (1a–11b), and some “Doses and Foods7 of the Beneficent8 Immortals” in many forms (12a–20a). Next is a detailed description of “What Is Advantageous for the Four Seasons” (20b–24a), a listing of the negative results from over-indulgence in any of the five flavors and general ways to avoid
FOR THE QAN: CHINESE DIETARY MEDICINE OF THE MONGOL ERA AS SEEN IN HU SZU-HUI’S YIN-SHAN CHENG-YAO Introduction, Translation, Commentary, and Chinese Text PAUL D. BUELL EUGENE N. ANDERSON Appendix By CHARLES PERRY First published in 2000 by Kegan Paul International Ltd This edition first published in 2009 by Routledge 2 Park Square, Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon, OX14 4RN Simultaneously published in the USA and Canada by Routledge 270 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016 Routledge is an