cover image Asian Appetizers: Starters and Finger Foods for Every Occasion

Asian Appetizers: Starters and Finger Foods for Every Occasion

Vicki Liley. Periplus Editions, $15.95 (94pp) ISBN 978-0-7946-0579-7

Asian cooking expert Liley (Asian Barbecue) returns with a winning collection of Asian-themed appetizers in this slim but savory volume. The 50-plus recipes range from familiar Thai Spring Rolls, dumplings, fried wontons and shrimp toasts to tasty tidbits like Roast Duck Rolls with Sweet Hoisin Sauce, Baked Tandoori Chicken Pieces, and Meatballs with Fresh Basil and Sweet Chili Sauce. Those with a soft spot for rolls and wraps will get the most out of the book, as Liley employs phyllo dough, tortillas, rice paper and wonton wrappers liberally, encasing asparagus spears, oysters and thinly sliced beef with winning results. A thoughtful and informative passage on basic sushi dishes and preparation, complete with step-by-step photos, enables budding chefs to recreate nigiri, nori and classic California Rolls at home. Most dishes come together fairly easily, though some may have trouble sourcing Chinese roast duck and pork (Liley advocates purchasing them from a Chinese restaurant). That said, fans of Asian cuisine should find this an accessible, inspiring and tasty addition to their cookbook collection.