Phoenix Claws and Jade Trees

Second Saturdays reading series, the monthly platform for Singaporean and American authors in New York City, begins its new season on October 10 with a very special treat. Chef Kian Lam Kho will speak about his new cookbook Phoenix Claws and Jade Trees, and provide a sampling prepared with traditional Chinese techniques from the book.

After training as an aerospace engineer and developing software on Wall Street for more than twenty years, Kian decided to pursue his passion for cooking. He apprenticed in the kitchen of Chef Josh Capon at Canteen (now Lure Fishbar), in New York City’s Soho neighborhood, where he learned to produce modern American food. After Canteen, he started organizing pop-up Chinese banquet events. Disappointed with the substandard Cantonese fare he found in the United States and unable to find a good Chinese cookbook, he wrote home to his family in Singapore for instructions on how to prepare authentic recipes.

In Phoenix Claws and Jade Trees: Essential Techniques of Authentic Chinese Cooking (Clarkson Potter, $35, hardback), Kian shares 158 recipes for the dishes he has perfected over the years, along with 240 photographs, including practical step-by-step technique photos and inspiring beauty shots. Historical and cultural information is also included. Publishers Weekly describes the book as “a superb tutorial on Chinese cooking.”

RSVP Jee at for details about the October 10 event.

All are welcomed. Come and sample the food. The book will be on sale. See you there!


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About Jee Leong Koh

My book of poems Steep Tea (Carcanet) was named a Best Book of 2015 by UK's Financial Times, and a Finalist by Lambda Literary. I also wrote three other books of poems and a book of zuihitsu. My work has been shortlisted for the Singapore Literature Prize, and translated into Japanese, Chinese, Vietnamese, Russian and Latvian. Originally from Singapore, I live in New York City, where I edit the arts blog Singapore Poetry, and run the Second Saturdays Reading Series and the Singapore Literature Festival in NYC.

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