If you’ve read all the way to the end of our cookbook, then you’ll know where our journey in publishing began. The Pronunciation Guide hints at it, and our bios at the end of the book spell it out – for many years, I worked as an editor of Chinese dictionaries. You may remember that this is how we ended up in Oxford: I was the Chief Editor of the Oxford Chinese Dictionary.
The life of a dictionary editor is very solitary, and did not prepare me well for market and restaurant work. But it was excellent grounding when it came to writing the cookbook.
Not the narrative bits. Writing about Tibetan food and life on the Plateau is something we’ve been doing for a long time, and our bank of blogs surely helped us to land the book deal. Free-form writing has been a joyous practice after the inevitable constraints in editing the dictionary all those years.
No, it’s the recipes that benefited greatly from my previous life compiling dictionary entries. This was as rigorous an exercise as you would imagine. Recipes call for the same level of precision. You have to nail down all the details, whilst at the same time guiding the reader with as few words as possible. A very similar discipline!
Every week we receive emails/messages/tags from people who’ve bought the book and cooked some of the dishes. The very best feedback – and we get this all the time – is how easy the recipes are to follow. Yes! Fuchsia Dunlop praises them as “clear and reassuring”. Thanks, then, to the many publishers who let me cut my teeth on dictionaries first.
This week, Taste Tibet: Family Recipes From The Himalayas turns 1 – happy birthday to our baby! It’s been such a fantastic year watching our cookbook make its way into kitchens all around the world. We’ve made friends near and far, and everybody who loves the food from our restaurant and food stall is now able to have a go at making it at home. We have so enjoyed seeing your pictures, answering your questions and marvelling at how many new Tibetan chefs we have helped to train! The solution to our recruitment problem may be right under our noses…
We’re open all the usual hours this week, as follows:
Wednesday: 5-9.30pm (dinner only)
Thursday – Saturday: 12-3 (lunch) / 5-9.30pm (dinner)
Our menu is out now – check the website for full details. Swing by for dine in, hot food takeaway or freezer food, our chilli oil and – of course – signed copies of our cookbook.
Looking forward to having you in,
Julie and Yeshi
Opening hours this week:
Thurs – Sat: 12-3pm 🥢 5-9.30pm
☏ 01865 499318
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