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This blog is a collection of ruminations, translations, and personal opinions by Sabine and some guest authors. Reflecting my own personality, some posts are academic, some clinical, and some personal, some are excerpts from existing books and some may become part of future books. Please leave comments with feedback, questions, constructive criticism, and differences of opinion as long as you argue your reasons for disagreement logically. Any personal attacks, uncivil remarks, or self-promoting comments will be deleted.

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Guest Blog: A translation by Sumei Yi (edited by Eugene Anderson) of Gao Lian's Writings on Food and Drink

Gao Lian (Ming dynasty): 

Essays on Drinks and Delicacies for Medicinal Eating

Yin Zhuan Fu Shi Jian 飲饌服食箋

Chinese edition edited by T’ao Wentai

Translated by Sumei Yi, 2008-9

English version edited by E. N. Anderson, 2009-2011

The following is a guest blog by the esteemed Dr. Eugene Anderson, author of "The Food of China," "A Soup for the Quan" (with Paul Buell), a number of other outstanding books and many, many articles, and a wonderful blog at

English Editor’s Note:

Gao Lian was a 16th-century playwright, litterateur and practitioner of the arts of healing and longevity. He wrote or compiled several treatises on these matters, collected in his “eight treatises” published in 1591 (Wikipedia).  The present translation is of the material on food and drink from this collection, including a good deal of alchemy and medicine. 

Gao’s approach is totally eclectic.  He reproduces a great mass of odd advice and recipes, many of the latter so hard to follow that one doubts strongly if Gao ever tried them or even knew anyone who had. Reproducing any old advice that might help someone live long was a Ming Dynasty practice.  In this book, thoroughly practical village advice is mixed with arcane alchemy.

The book is of interest largely to show what a refined gentleman of the 16th century would think worthy of attention, but some of the recipes are good or historically important.  Particularly interesting is the Sweets section, for it includes several Near Eastern recipes, including several for halwah—specifically so called (“hai luo”) in one case.  Evidently, Near Eastern foods continued to be of interest in China, as they had been in Yuan (Buell et al. 2010).  The nativist reaction after the fall of Yuan had largely eliminated this interest, but it persisted, as shown not only by recipe books like this but also by government reprinting of Yuan works.

In the medical sections, Gao shows a striking fascination with Solomon’s seal, lilyturf, Atractylodes spp., and a few other plants. Sumei Yi and I are not aware if this is his personal devotion or a general Ming idea, but the Yinshan Zhengyao of the Yuan Dynasty also liked Solomon’s seal, reprinting a long paean of praise to it from Ge Hong.  Gao is also interestingly careful about separating the three kinds of cardamom:  baidoukou (the white cardamom familiar in the west), caokou (Ammomum tsaoko, a large round brown cardamom), and sharen (Ammomum villosum and sometimes similar species), very large coarse musky cardamoms from south China and southeast Asia.  He carefully distinguishes their uses and often calls for two kinds in one recipe. 

The Wikipedia entry intriguingly says he described bipolar disorder; we eagerly await details on this.

In translating, we have given scientific names and common popular ones but have not been exhaustive (so far) about identifications (or consistent about citing “authorities” with names).  A cleaned-up translation with all this made consistent will take time, and the editor is lacking that commodity at this point, but needs to make the work available.  Further time and research is sorely needed.

  • Gao’s health writings have been the subject of an article we have not seen, cited in the Wikipedia entry “Gao Lian, dramatist” (retrieved Oct. 20, 2009): Carpenter, Bruce E.  1990.  “Kao Lien’s Eight Treatises on the Nurturing of Life,” Tezukayama University Review 67:38-51.
  • See also: Buell, Paul D.; E. N. Anderson; Charles Perry.  2010.  A Soup for the Qan.   Leiden:  Brill.
  • Clunas, Craig.  1991.  Superfluous Things:  Material Culture and Social Status in Early Modern China.  Urbana:  University of Illinois Press.

This translation is made from an edition published in 1985 by the China Commercial Press in Beijing. Translator’s and English-language editor’s comments in text are in square brackets.  Comments in parentheses are parenthetical notes by Gao Lian or his sources.  This includes Chinese characters and names, which are in regular parentheses, being part of the original text.   Most of the footnotes are by the Chinese editor, Tao Wentai, and consist largely of explanations or relevant quotes from other sources.  The translator, Sumei Yi, has contributed footnotes that are confined to brief comments on translation, including identification or failure to identify.  Many of Gao’s plant names defy all search through dictionaries and encyclopedias in Chinese or English; we have searched a wide range of sources. This is unsurprising, as a great deal remains to be recorded about local and specialized usages even in contemporary Chinese.


Gao Lian’s preface

Mr. Gao said: “Drinking and eating are the basis of life for humans.” Therefore, in the body, yin and yang move and are used, and the five phases mutually produce each other.  This is not unconnected with drinking and eating. After drinking and eating, the qi of grains will fill one. When the qi of grains is full [has filled one], the qi of blood will thrive. When the qi of blood thrives, the tendons and strength will be improved. The spleen and stomach are basic to the five [major] internal organs. The qi of the [other] four internal organs come from the spleen. The four seasons [sic; presumably life in the four seasons] are based upon the qi of the stomach. Drinking and eating helps support the qi. When qi is generated, the essence is improved. When the essence is generated, the qi will be nourished. When the qi is full, the spirit will be generated. When the spirit is full, the body will be completed. This is because they need and use each other.

A man should not feel indifferent to his daily use of nourishment in his life養生. He should not let those nourishing him harm him or turn the five flavors into killers of the five internal organs. Then he obtains the way of nourishing life.

In my writings, I put teas and waters first, then congee and vegetables, then meat dishes, liquors, flours, cakes, fruits and so on. I have only collected what is proper and useful and do not seek the abnormal. As for cooking living creatures or flavoring precious food with pepper and spices, these are for chefs serving the Office of Grand Official[1] under the Son of Heaven.  Such things are not for a hermit mountain-man山人 like me. I do not collect them at all.

Other food records in the literature of immortals have benefited the world. Recipes consistently proved effective should be made using the proper rules. It is up to the cook to make the recipe in a spiritual and wise fashion. One should choose what can be eaten, and record ones that help cure illnesses and prolong life. Individuals are different based upon their hidden yin (yincang阴藏) or hidden yang (yangcang阳藏). They should take cold or hot medicines accordingly. One must have one’s qi and nature harmonized and peaceful, and have simple desires. The power of what have been taken and eaten will be then effective. If the six desires are too strong, the five sense organs[2] will malfunction, and then a person will be recorded in the register of ghosts even if he takes food based on the immortal recipes. Then what is the benefit of taking it? The knowledgeable should think for themselves.

I have edited the recipes into one group of notes: drinks and foods and how they can be taken and eaten.


Preface on Various Previous Treatises

The Perfected Man[3] said: “the spleen is able to nourish the other organs like a mother.” Men knowing how to nourish life called it Yellow Elder Lady (huangpo黄婆)[4]. Sima Chengzhen taught people that one should keep the yellow qi and cause it to enter into the Muddy Pill (niwan泥丸)[5], which enables him to achieve longevity. Chuyu Yi said that if one can eat when he is ill (angu安穀), he will live beyond his allotted span.  If he cannot eat when he is ill, he will not live up to his allotted time. Therefore, we know that if the spleen and stomach are complete and strong, the hundreds of illnesses will not be produced.

An old man in Jiangnan was seventy-three years old and as strong as the youth. When asked how he nourished himself, he answered, “I have no special formula. Just that all my life I have not been used to drinking soup or water. Ordinary people will drink several sheng a day. I drink only a few he, and merely let them touch and moisten my lips. The spleen and stomach dislike wetness. If one drinks little, his stomach will be strong and the qi will thrive and the liquid flow. If a person risks taking a long journey, he will not feel thirsty either.” These can be considered true words, and not trivial.

Eating and drinking should take time. The degree of hunger and fullness should be moderate. Water and food should change such that the collected qi flows are harmonized. Then the essence and blood will be produced. The circulation of qi and that of blood (rongwei榮衛) will keep going smoothly. The internal organs will remain balanced. The spirit will be peaceful. The upright qi will be full inside the body. The mysterious and pefected will meet the outside [world?]. The inner and outer vicious illnesses (xieli邪沴)[6] will not attack him, and the various kinds of illnesses will not be able to arise.

For proper drinking and eating: if one does not take food till he feels hungry, he will not be satisfied with chewing sufficiently. If one does not drink till he feels thirsty, he will not be satisfied with drinking slowly. One should not wait to eat till he feels very hungry and he should not overeat. One should not wait to drink till he feels very thirsty and he should not drink too frequently. One should not be concerned about how delicate the food is or how warm the drink is.

The sixth in the “Essay on Seven Taboos” (qijinwen七禁文) composed by the Perfected Man of Grand Unity (taiyi zhenren太乙真人) says: Refining the drink and food will nourish the qi of stomach. Peng Helin said that the spleen is an internal zang 臟[7]organ and the stomach is an internal fu腑 organ. The qi of spleen and stomach will compensate each other. The stomach is the sea of water and grains, mainly receiving water and grains. The spleen is in the middle, grinding and digesting them. They will turn into the blood and qi, nourishing the whole body and irrigating the five internal organs. Therefore, the man practicing the technique of nourishing his life cannot eat without refining his food. This does not mean preparing all sorts of things growing in the water and on the ground, or strange and precious dishes. It means not eating the raw or the cold, nor the gross or the hard, nor forcing oneself to eat or drink. One should eat when he feels hungry and should not overeat. One should drink when he feels thirsty and should not overdrink. Otherwise, he will encounter the situations mentioned by Confucius [actually said to be avoided by Confucius]:  the food spoils, the fish stinks, and the meat decays, so that they cannot be eaten. All these situations harm the qi of stomach. Not only will they make people sick, they harm life. If one hopes to gain longevity, he should be deeply alarmed about this. Those who want to support their elder relatives, or those who want to live happily and support themselves, should also know it.

Huang Tiingjian said:  “In Tongzhou, people steam lamb till it is mashed and then add apricot-kernel congee (xinglao杏酪) and eat it with a knife instead of chopsticks. In Nanyang, they add sophora sprouts to the Stirring-Heart Noodle (boxinmian撥心面) and wash them with warm water. The adept’s rice-covered dish (san糝) should be the plastered pork (mozhu抹豬) from Xiangyang. The rice (chui炊) should be the fragrant rice from Gongcheng. The offering (jian薦) should be steamed young goose. Let a chef from Wuxing chop a perch caught in the Songjiang River and then cook it with water taken from the King Kang Valley on Mt. Lu. Use a small amount of the highest-grade tea from Zengkeng. Then take off your [formal] clothes and lie down. Let someone read aloud the first and second Rhymed Essays on the Red Wall (qianhou chibi fu前後赤壁賦) composed by Su Shi. These are enough for one to have an enjoyable break.”  [Or “a laugh,” but Su’s essays on the tragedy of the Red Wall are anything but funny, so something gentler is intended.] Although this is only a fantasy (yuyan寓言) told by Huang Tingjian, we can imagine the refinement of those foods. Would that we might gather them together and offer them to the elders as delicious sustenance.

Su Shi says in his “Rhymed Essay on Gourmets” (laotao fu老饕賦): “The chef waves a knife—Yiya [the mythical super-chef of ancient China] is cooking and stewing! The water should be fresh and the pot clean. The fire must not be old and firewood must not be rotten. Nine times steamed and sunned, more than a hundred times boiled and floated and sunk in the hot stock to make the soup! Taste a piece of meat from the neck. Chew the two pincers [of a crab] before the frost descends (shuangjiang霜降). Cook the mashed cherry with honey. Steam the lamb with almond conjee. The clam is to be half cooked with liquor. The crab is served a bit raw, with lees. Therefore, gather the tenderness and tastiness of every food and nourish me as a gourmet. A lovely girl, docile, her face is as fresh as plum and peach, plays the jade se瑟 of Consort Xiang and the cloud ao (yun’ao云璈)[8] of the draughts of the Heavenly God. Ask the immortal lady E Lühua萼綠華 to dance according to the ancient song of Yulunpao郁輪袍. Take the glasses from the southern sea and hold the wine from Liangzhou. They wish me longevity when I divide the remaining wine among the attending boys. My face gradually turns red and I am surprised when the pipa made from sandalwood is played. The song is as wonderful as a string of pearls and as long as a thread spun out of a cocoon. I feel pity for her tired hands and ask her to rest for awhile. I suspect that her lips are dry and some ointment should be applied. Pour a jar of milk, which is as white as snow. Place as many as one hundred jade ship-shaped serving trays. The guests’ eyes are as wet as the water in the fall. Salt and bones are mashed in the liquor made in the spring. The pretty girl asks for leave and then the clouds disperse [probably an arcane erotic reference]. The gentleman suddenly escapes into Zen. The wind passing through the pine trees, as the water is boiled with bubbles as tiny as crab eyes. The rabbit-hair brush is floating above the snow-white paper. The gentleman rises up with a laugh. The sea is broad and the sky is high.”  [Like Huang’s, this is a fantasy, but it is even more surrealistic and visionary.  Su Shi could be a very down-to-earth poet, but he could leap the void too, and this is as far out as he gets.]

A perch dish from Wu Prefecture: collect perch no longer than three chi during the eighth and ninth month when the frost descends. Mince it. Wash it in water and wrap it with a piece of cloth. Let the water completely evaporate. Spread it on a plate. Pick both flowers and leaves of aromatic madder (xiangrou香柔, Elsholzia ciliata) [9]. Mince them and add them into the minced fish. Stir it till it is evenly mixed. The perch caught when the frost descends has meat as white as snow and is not smelly. It is called gold and jade minced fish. It is a wonderful dish from southeast.

It is said in Youyang zazu酉陽襍俎 [The Youyang Miscellany, a well-known Tang Dynasty work by Duan Changshi]:  “A [good] pastry food (geshi餎食) is wonton made by the Xiao family. When the soup is filtered, it is not greasy and can be used to cook tea. The zongzi粽子 made by the Yu family is as white as jade. The cherry biluo [unclear; just possibly a transliteration of “pilau”] made by Han Yue can change color. He can also make cold fish pastes (leng hutu kuai冷胡突膾), thick soup of snakehead fish (liyu yi鳢鱼臆), continuously steamed deer (lianzheng lu連蒸鹿), and river deer skin noodle (zhangpi suobing麞皮索餅). General Qu Lianghan can make roasted (zhi炙) donkey and camel hump.”

He Ying was luxurious in taste. When he ate, he had to have food that filled a square one zhang on each side. Later he reduced his food intake somewhat, but still had white Hemiculter leucisculus fish (baiyu白魚)[10], dried eel (shanla鱓腊), and sugared crab (tangxie糖蟹). Zhong Yuan held that “when the eel is dried, it bends sharply; when crab is added to sugar, it moves restlessly; when a humane man uses his mind, he feels deep empathy.”  [This is one of those striking parallelisms so universal in Chinese literature.]

As for the che’ao clam (che’ao車螯)[11], blood clam (ark shell; han蚶), and oyster, they do not have eyes or eyebrows inside their shells, which shows the strangeness of the undivided (hundun渾沌). Their mouths are closed outside but not because they are bronze men who cannot speak. They neither thrive, nor turn weak, unlike grass and woods. They have no voice or sense of smell. What is the difference between them and tiles and gravel? Therefore, they are suitable for being used in kitchen as food at any time.  [This idea that motionless shellfish are more mineral than animal and thus fair game for vegetarians survives today.]

During the Later Han, Guo Linzong used to stay in the house of Mao Rong (his zi is Jiwei). The next morning, Mao Rong killed a hen and made a dish with it. Guo Linzong thought it was made for him. However, it turned out to be that Mao Rong offered the whole hen to his mother and had a vegetarian meal with Guo Linzong. Thus Guo Linzong rose and bowed to him, saying: “You are really virtuous!” Mao Rong accomplished virtue by showing filial piety.

It is said in Tiaoxi yuyin苕溪漁隱 that Su Shi composed poems and rhymed essays to describe the wonderfulness of food and drinks, such as the Rhymed Essay on the Gourmet [above], and Poem on Bean Congee. The Poem on Bean Congee reads:

            River mouth, a thousand qing of snow-white reeds.

            From the thatch, a lonely smoke plume appears and disappears.

            Mortar and pestle, set on the ground, hull jade-like rice.

            A sandpot cooks the beans, as soft as butter.

            I am old and have no place to go.

            I sold books to ask the landlord to stay at his house.

            I lie listening to the crowing rooster, till the congee is ready,

            Then come to your house with head disheveled and slippers on.

[This evocation of poverty in a beautiful seven-syllable-line poem shows Su in more realist style.  A thousand qing is 15,000 acres. A samdpot is a sand-tempered earthenware cooking pot, still necessary for Chinese cooking.]

Another poem [still by Su] on a fried pastry (hanju寒具)[12] reads:

            Sim hands twist up jade-like stuff several xun in length.

            Fried in blue-green oil, it turns light yellow.

            On a spring night, the girl tosses about unconsciously,

            With her gold bracelet pressed flat.[13]

Hanju is also called “twisted head” (niantou捻头), which comes from a much-told story recorded by Liu Yuxi.

My son came up with a fresh idea that he uses wild yams to make the Jade Crumb Soup (yusan geng玉糝羹). Its color, fragrance, and taste are extremely good. It is unknown how its taste is compared to the Heavenly Cheese (tiansutuo天酥酡)[14]. In this world it is can be confirmed that there is no match for it. The poem reads,

            Fragrance like dragon saliva, [color] pure white.

            The taste is like that of milk but it is totally clear.

            Do not hastily compare Golden Minced Fish from the Southern Sea (nanhai jin?kuai南海金?膾),

            To Dongpo’s Jade Crumb Soup.

The Poem on Vegetarian Soup (caigeng菜羹) composed by Yang Wanli also reads,

            Use a spoon to take mica-like rice, fragrant and fresh, colored like jade [i.e., white].

            The vegetarian soup is newly cooked; in it are thin kingfisher-green slices.

            There is no meat or roast like this in the human world--

            Vegetarian food from heaven might be as sweet.

The Song Emperor Taizong ordered Su Yijian to explain Wenzhongzi文中子[15] to him. In this book, there was a saying about “wild herb soup and solid food (gengli hanqiu羹藜含糗)” from the Classic of Food composed by Yang Su杨素 and intended to be handed down to his son. The emperor asked, “which food is the most precious?” Su Yijian replied, “the food does not have a set flavor. What suits one’s taste is the precious one! I only know that the [strange plant name; character not in our sources , possibly a miswriting] juice is delicious. I can remember that one night it was extremely cold. I drank a lot by the stove. At midnight, I was thirsty. The moon in the courtyard was bright and there was a basin of [?] juice covered in the remaining snow. I ate several pieces without interruption. At the time I told myself that the phoenix meat made by the immortal chef in heaven would not be as good as what I had eaten. I have tried to compose a biography of Mr. Jade Bottle and record this story, but have not found opportunity and thus have no results to report.” The emperor laughed and agreed with him.

At Tang times, Liu Yan went to the court at the fifth beating of drum. It was in the middle of the coldest days at the time. On the road he saw a shop selling steamed Iranian pancakes (hubing胡饼; [Iranian nan or something similar]). The pancakes were steaming. Liu Yan asked people to buy it for him.  He wrapped it in his sleeves and [then] ate it. He told his colleagues that it was so delicious that it could not be described in words. This is also because food does not have a determined flavor hierarchy; whatever suits one’s taste is the precious kind!  [Food can taste different to different people and under different situations; each to his own.]

Ni Si [Song Dynasty] said that Huang Tingjian composed an essay of Five Seeings at Meal Time (shishi wuguan食时五观). His words were deep and profound. He could be called a person who knew shame. I[16] used to enter a Buddhist temple and saw fasting monks. Whenever they ate, they would have three bites of little flavor. The first bite was to know the right taste of rice. If a person ate too much and mixed up the five flavors, he would not know the right taste. If he ate light-flavored food, the food was delicious by itself and did not need to borrow other flavors. The second bite was to think where food and clothes came from. The third bite was to consider how strenuous the farmers were. These were the five seeings and the meanings were prepared in the process. It was very simple to use this method when eating. If one had three bites first, more than half the rice was eaten. Even if there was no soup or vegetables, he could also finish eating by himself. This was a way of being satisfied with poverty.  [Also a way of satisfying the standard Buddhist directive to think seriously about what you eat, every time you start eating.]

In the Essay on Thinking of Returning (sigui fu思归赋) Wang Fengyuan [of whom little is known] said:

My father was eighty years old and my mother’s hair had also turned white. I am still a clerk, staying far away from my parents. The black bird chirping in the morning even knows to feed his parents. How can I be less than a bird? Whom can I tell my sorrow? The qi of autumn is chilly and moving. In the day my sorrowful thoughts arose and I looked askance at the river bank. I remember that when I was a child, every kind of fruit had been just ripe and the precious ones were offered frequently. Sometimes there were long-waist purple water chestnuts (ziling changyao紫菱長腰), round and solid red foxnuts [17](hongqian yuanshi紅芡圓實), persimmons in shape of a cow’s heart, with green pedicels (niuxin ludi zhi shi牛心綠蒂之柿), chestnuts individually wrapped in yellowish skin (dubao huangfu zhi li獨包黃膚之栗), greenish taros growing in linked [levee-divided?] fields (qingyu lianqu青芋連區), blackish barnyard millet (Echinochloa crus-galli) with five calyxes (wubai wuchu烏稗[18]五出), colorful duck-claw wood with small seeds (yajiao shoucai hu weihe鴨腳受彩乎微核), quinces that grow as if carved out of cinnabar (mugua loudan er chengzhi木瓜鏤丹而成質), breast-like greenish pear (qingru zhi li青乳之梨), oranges in shape of a reddish bottle, salted bee pupae (fengyong yancuo蜂蛹醃醝), honey-covered areca nuts and crab apples [19](binzha zimi檳楂漬蜜). Meat dishes included cormorant[20] (jiaojing鵁鶄) wild goose (yeyan野雁), ducks living in a lake, chirping quails, fatty crabs from a pure river, fresh fish from cold water, covered with purple fronds[?] and mixed with wild rice stem (jiaoshou茭首). There were dogwood berries (Cornus officinalis) (yu萸[21])  and chrysanthemums floating in cups of liquor. Turnips (jing菁[22]) and leeks (jiu韭) were displayed on the table. I sat by the pines and bamboos in the mountain with streams, sweeping under the paulownias (tong桐) and willows in the field in front of my door. My boy servants would not be noisy and I had books by my sides. Sometimes I had kept quiet for a whole day, while other times I had pleasant conversations with my friends. I believed in what my parents liked and had been in the community for long. My heart earnestly desires to decline the official seal and ribbon, but I definitely do not want to imitate the self-locked heart of Tao Yuanming, who was ashamed to bow down for five pecks of grain.  [All the treats mentioned are rustic mountain-and-river foods.  Tao Yuanming famously rejected office, thus nobly following his true nature but less nobly denying the world his services; Wang wants to follow him but is too moral.]


[1] An office from the Han dynasty, taking charge of food in the palace.

[2] Ear, eye, mouth, nose, and tongue.

[3] The author meant Sun Simiao.

[4] It is because the spleen belongs to the earth and the earth is yellow. It is also because the spleem assumes the nourishing role of mother or grandmother.

[5] The upper cinnabar field (shangdantian上丹田).

[6] The original meaning of li is that water cannot flow freely. It is used to refer natural disaster or illness.

[7] Zang includes heart, liver, spleen, lung, and kidney. Fu includes stomach, gallbladder, triple burners, bladder, large intestine, and small intestine.

[8] A stringed instrument.

[9] The formal way to write it should be 香葇. It is also called xiangru香薷.


香薷, 一年生或多年生芳香草本植物。茎和叶可以提取芳香油。全草入药。 宋  赵叔向 《肯綮录·香薷》:“藥有所謂香薷者,薷字不見于《篇韻》,獨《本艸》音柔,今人多不識此字,北人呼爲香茸,南人呼香蕕,其實皆音譌耳。” 明  李时珍 《本草纲目·草三·香薷》:“香薷有野生,有家蒔。中州人三月種之,呼爲香菜,以充蔬品。”

[10] Or baitiao白鰷.

[11] 車螯, 蛤的一种。璀璨如玉,有斑点。肉可食。肉壳皆入药。自古即为海味珍品.

[12] 一种油炸的面食。 北魏  贾思勰 《齐民要术·饼法》:“環餅,一名‘寒具’;截餅,一名‘蝎子’。皆須以蜜調水溲麪。若無蜜,煮棗取汁。牛羊脂膏亦得;用牛羊乳亦好--令餅美脆。”明  李时珍 《本草纲目·穀部四·寒具》:“ 林洪 《清供》云:寒具,捻頭也。以糯粉和麪,麻油煎成,以糖食之。可留月餘,宜禁煙用。觀此,則寒具即今饊子也。以糯粉和麪入少鹽,牽索紐捻成環釧之形,油煎食之。”

A kind of fried pastry. Before frying, add honey water, jujube juice, cow and sheep fat, or cow and sheep milk, to the flour.

[13] This is a metaphor. The image of hanju is like a flattened gold bracelet.  There is a double-entendre for lovesickness here.

[14] It is said in Buddhist scripture that tiansutuo is the food served in heaven or the ancient India. 古 印度 酪制食品名。《法苑珠林》卷一一二:“諸天有以珠器而飲酒者,受用酥酡之食,色觸香味,皆悉具足。” 宋  林洪 《山家清供·玉糁羹》:“ 東坡 一夕與 子由 飲,酣甚,槌蘆菔爛煮,不用他料,只研白米爲糝。食之,忽放箸撫几曰:‘若非 天竺 酥酡,人間決無此味。’”Unknown in China.

[15] The collected works composed by Wenzhongzi, or Wang Tong, Sui Dynasty.

[16] Huang Tingjian.

[17] Also called chicken-head; Euryale sp.

[18] It is also called wujincao烏金草.

[19] Here I follow the translation provided in the book, in which binzha is bin and zha, or pinang and crab apple. But there is a kind of plant called binzi槟子, a kind of apple, which is red and turns purple when ripe, small, sour and acerb. 槟子树,一种苹果树。果实红色,熟后转紫,个小,味酸甜带涩

[20] It is also called chilu池鷺  and luci鸬鹚.

[21] It is zhuyu茱萸.

[22] Or wujing芜菁.