An Encyclopaedia on Chinese History and Literature

Shushipu 疏食譜

Jul 5, 2013 © Ulrich Theobald

Shushipu 疏食譜, full title 本心齋疏食譜 "Notes on simple food from the Studio of [Seeking] Foundations in the Heart" is a book on diet written during the Song period 宋 (960-1279) by Chen Dasou 陳達叟, courtesy name Benxinweng 本心翁. Chen also wrote a similar book, Zhongchao shipu 中朝食譜, which is listed in the bibliographical book Congshu juyao 叢書舉要 of Yang Shoujing 楊守敬 (1839-1915). Chen hailed from Qingzhang 清漳 (modern Feixiang 肥鄉, Hebei), but nothing is known about his life, and not even who he was. His name is only mentioned in Wang Shixian's 汪士賢 Shanju zazhi 山居雜誌 from the Ming period 明 (1368-1644), and in the Qing-period 清 (1644-1911) bibliography Qianqingtang shumu 千頃堂書目.

Because the text is included in Zuo Jia's 左圭 series Baichuan xuehai 百川學海 (fl. 1273) from the Song period, there is no doubt that the text dates from that period of time. In this edition, Chan Dasou is called a student in the Shanyou Academy 友善書堂, and it might therefore be that he was only the compiler, and not the real "author" of the content.

The Shushipu lists 20 recipes of dishes, in a very refined and elegant language, but these recipes are rather poetic than practical, because there are virtually no quantities provided. The bibliography Qianqingtang shumu writes the title 蔬食譜, which would mean "Notes on vegetarian food", while shushi 疏食 means "coarse" or "simple" diet. The book is also to be found in the series Shuofu 說郛.

Li Jingwei 李經緯 et al., eds. (1995). Zhongyi da cidian 中醫大辭典 (Beijing: Renmin weisheng chubanshe), 378.
Li Xueqin 李學勤, Lü Wenyu 呂文郁, eds. (1996). Siku da cidian 四庫大辭典 (Changchun: Jilin daxue chubanshe), Vol. 2, 1862.
Lü Jitang 呂繼棠 (1995). "Benxinzhai shushi pu 本心齋疏食譜", in Zhongguo pengren baike quanshu 中國烹飪百科全書 (Beijing: Zhongguo da baike quanshu chubanshe), 39.
Qiu Zhicheng 邱志誠 (2011). "Benxinzhai shushi pu zuozhe kaolüe 《本心齋蔬食譜》作者考略", Zhongguo nongshi 中國農史, 30 (1): 139-142.
Shi Xuanyuan 施宣圓 et al, eds. (1987). Zhongguo wenhua cidian 中國文化辭典 (Shanghai: Shanghai shehui kexue xueyuan chubanshe), 876.
蜀漢 (221-263)