My friend, Steven Shaw, Beard Award winner and co-founder of the eGullet Society, has a new book in print: Asian Dining Rules: Essential Strategies for Eating Out at Japanese, Chinese, Southeast Asian, Korean and Indian Restaurants. This book serves as a primer for folks who might be mystified by Asian restaurants and is filled with useful information and personal stories. Once such story includes a mention of yours truly, in a discussion about boiled peanuts. Yes, boiled peanuts are not a delicacy limited to the American South, as they’re pretty popular in Vietnamese cuisine. I happened to introduce Steven and his wife to boiled peanuts, purchased from a roadside stand next to a Piggly Wiggly in eastern North Carolina.
The book is a fun read and should be viewed as that, rather than a comprehensive guide to each region’s cuisine. I particularly found the Indian food section to be helpful, as that remains the cuisine most difficult for me to understand. And seeing it’s only 10 bucks from Amazon, it’s a bargain definitely worth purchasing.