Secret Chinese Recipesby Kuan Yin Ma
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During the 19th century, Cantonese restaurateurs developed American Chinese cuisine when they modified their food to suit a more Western palate. First catering to railroad workers, restaurants were established in towns where Chinese food was completely unknown. These restaurant workers adapted to using local ingredients and catered to their customers' tastes. Dishes on the menu were often given numbers, and often a roll and butter were offered on the side.
In the process, chefs invented dishes such as General Tso's Chicken, and developed a style of Chinese food not found in China. Restaurants provided an ethnic niche for small businesses at a time when the Chinese people were excluded from most jobs in the wage economy by racial discrimination or lack of language fluency.
American Chinese food typically treats vegetables as garnish while cuisines of China emphasize vegetables. This can be seen in the use of carrots and tomatoes. Native Chinese cuisine makes frequent use of Asian leafy vegetables like bok choy and kai-lan and puts a greater emphasis on fresh meat and seafood.
This 77 page, 100 recipes, collection of "Secret Chinese Recipes From Chinatown" was given to me by an old cook in Chinatown who is a friend of the family. He was aware that I was going to share with the public.
- Ray Poirier
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I have always been a fan of Chinese food buffets, but when I wanted to cook some for myself I had no idea where to start. This book shows you how to make many of the foods that I loved and plenty more.