A culinary tour of the Orient including national favorites from Indochina, Thailand, Burma, the Phillipines, Malaya, India, Japan and China with Mrs. Buck trying bravely to soothe the apprehensive Westerner confronted with Javanese sauces made of peanut butter, chili peppers and coconut milk, the more flaming (vindaloo) curries of India or the mincemeat of raw fish shashimi which the Japanese eat on streetcorners, like Americans do the hotdog. Even if you steer clear of ngo-pi -- an ""obtrusive, pungent, acrid"" preparation of dried and fermented fish which the Burmese love and most Westerners deem ""quite awful"" -- this book is only for the adventurous palate. Rice and curries are centerpieces -- but none of your bottled powders will do; Mrs. Buck urges homemade blendings of caraway, coriander, cinnamon, cumin, saffron, tumeric, mace, nutmeg, garlic, chili, cardamom. . . . Cooking instructions are on the whole cursory but Mrs. Buck supplies an appreciative essay on each country's food ceremonials, and a much needed glossary to eastern terms should you ever find yourself yearning for a bowl of hingyo on the road to Mandalay. . . .