Invitation to a Banquet: Exploring Chinese food

What is Chinese food and how has it been understood and misunderstood in the west? Author and cook Fuchsia Dunlop draws on three decades’ of experience to examine some of the fundamental aspects of Chinese food and ask how outsiders can appreciate it more deeply.

Fuchsia Dunlop is a James Beard award-winning food writer and cook specialising in Chinese cuisine. After graduating from Cambridge University in English Literature, she spent a year at Sichuan University as a British Council Scholar in the mid-1990s. Afterwards, she trained as a chef at the Sichuan Higher Institute of Cuisine: the start of a lifelong fascination with Chinese food. Over the three decades since, she has travelled widely in China, documenting recipes and foodways and talking to just about everybody about food. Fuchsia is the author of seven books about Chinese food including, most recently, Invitation to a Banquet: The Story of Chinese Food, which recently won the 2024 Fortnum and Mason Food Book award and is the fifth of her books to have been published in Chinese translation. She is a regular contributor to FT Weekend and other publications and to radio and TV shows including Ugly Delicious and Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown.