MagSampler

These are "Reports from the Newsstand," my comments on the publications in our catalogue at MagSampler.com. We offer sample copies of our publications, not subscriptions. Each sample copy costs $2.59, well below newsstand cover prices (if the publication is available on your newsstand at all). A $2.00 shipping charge is added to each order. Publishers use MagSampler.com to get their publications into the hands of potential subscribers.

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Ed Rust, proprietor of MagSampler.com, has worked in publishing in a variety of capacities for decades. He started as U.S. circulation director of the Financial Times "way back when they flew the papers into Kennedy Airport from London a day late." He most recently was managing editor of publications at the General Society, Sons of the Revolution.

Monday, November 28, 2005

FLAVOR & FORTUNE: Sophisticated Chinese Cooking


We're going to visit the local dim sum palace today, a lunch we'll have to celebrate the arrival in the newsstand of Flavor & Fortune, a quarterly magazine about Chinese food. This is a serious food magazine, published in Kings Park, NY by an organization called The Institute for the Advancement of the Science & Art of Chinese Cuisine. Its driving force is Flavor & Fortune's editor, Dr. Jacqueline M. Newman, a registered dietitian, professor emeritus at Queens College, City University of New York, and the author of several books, most recently, Food Culture in China. While the magazine is using more graphics lately (it just recently incorporated color throughout), it's mostly text―fairly small-sized text. That's because there's a lot to squeeze in: many detailed recipes, articles about those recipes, discussions of spices, visits to Chinese restaurants in New York and other major cities, even an article or two about an aspect of Chinese history (food-related, of course). We're salivating over the Fall 2005 issue, just arrived in the newsstand, featuring a couple of glossy-coated roasted chickens on the cover. Turning to the three-page cover story that the editor has written on "Chicken: Chinese Style," we find a very detailed discussion of the history of the chicken in ancient China (it was apparently used for divination purposes before anyone thought to eat one), and how over the millennia the Chinese have come to enjoy consuming every bit of the bird except the feathers. The article ends with recipes for "Hot and Sour Soup, The Ancient Way" (it includes coagulated chicken or pork blood) and Fujian chicken. Among the issue's many recipes, for such items as black bean sauce, tomato shrimp with mango, black rice soup, and dry-sauteed beef with ho fun (a broad rice noodle), one stood out to me as truly exotic: it's for pickled duck tongue, and calls for one pound of duck tongues along with a host of spices and sauces. Some other interesting ingredients in this issue are an article about what a food critic should consider in reviewing a restaurant, a list of Internet sites dealing with Chinese cuisine, a discussion of the Zhuang people (China's largest ethnic non-Han minority), and the editor's own reviews of several memorable restaurants in San Francisco. I liked her comment, "Understand that poor restaurants should never be reviewed. Why call attention to them?" If you enjoy eating Chinese food, this magazine is of great interest. If you like to cook Chinese food, it's a necessity. An annual subscription to Flavor & Fortune (four issues) is $19.50 from the publisher; you can get a sample copy from us for $2.59.

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