Chopstick Cinema

Exploring Asian Food and Film

by Celeste Heiter
Photographs by Celeste Heiter

Explore the Far East from the comfort of home through the cuisines of ten Asian countries, paired with movies by some of Asia’s most visionary filmmakers.

With Asian food and film blogger Celeste Heiter as your guide, and Chopstick Cinema as your culinary and cinematic passport, savor the delicacy of Vietnamese Crab-Filled Summer Rolls as you inhale the intoxicating Scent of Green Papaya; relive the bone-chilling saga of a haunted village over a steaming dish of Pad Thai; spend a contemplative evening on a serene lake in a floating Buddhist temple as you nibble on Korean Kim Bap and Mandu Dumplings; feast on Samosas and Chicken Vindaloo while cheering a rag-tag team of Indian locals in a cricket match against the British raj; or spend a summer in rural Cambodia to learn the true meaning of a simple bowl of rice.

Based on her belief that anyone with basic cooking skills can prepare an authentic Asian meal using ingredients that are readily available at almost any well-stocked food market, Celeste has selected her favorite Asian dishes from among the hundreds of recipes featured on her Chopstick Cinema blog. The menu for each country is a collection of ten dishes: nibbles, cold and hot appetizers, soup, salad, noodles, main course, two side dishes, and dessert, along with a shopping guide and online sources for hard-to-find ingredients; followed by a review of Celeste’s favorite film from each country, and recommendations for several alternate films.
With a pair of chopsticks in one hand, and your remote control in the other, satisfy your appetite for Asian food and adventure that’s sure to be as memorable as the real thing.


Celeste Heiter

With her lifelong love of Japan, its people, and its culture, Celeste Heiter believes that she may have been Japanese in a previous incarnation. In this lifetime, however, Celeste was born in Mobile, Alabama, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in art and English from the University of South Alabama. Inspired by an enduring dream to visit the Great Buddha at Kamakura, she moved to Tokyo in 1988 and spent two years teaching English conversation. Celeste now makes her home in California’s beautiful Napa Valley, with the most treasured souvenir of her life in Japan: her son Will, who was born during her stay in Tokyo. She edited and contributed essays to the guidebook To Japan With Love and is the author of Vignettes of Japan, Ganbatte Means Go For It, Five Seven Five, The Sushi Book, and Chopstick Cinema: Exploring Asian Food and Film ( .

Additional recipes and film reviews by Celeste can be found at


2013; 7 1/8 x 9 1/2 inches; 288 pages; paperback; color images
ISBN-10: 1-934159-46-8
ISBN-13: 978-1-934159-46-0