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American Chinese - Cooking and Food Edit
Overview of American Chinese Cuisine History Edit
During the 19th century the American Chinese cuisine developed in America. This happen because of the Chinese restaurateurs who start to change their cooking techniques in order to adjust them to the American tastes. The second thing that the Chinese cuisine did in order to conquer the American market was to open restaurants in cities where Chinese food was totally unknown. Because chefs in these restaurants had to adapt their cooking techniques to the client preferences new unique dishes were created such as chop suey. The new style of Chinese cooking developed in America was nothing like the one practiced in China. The chop suey houses that developed all over America in the 19th century does not exist nowadays. They were replaced by modern Chinese restaurants ruled by new waves of immigrants from China. Some restaurants that still cook authentically Chinese food can be found in San Francisco and New York.
American Chinese cuisine had to adapt over the years in order to be served in America creating a unique style of cooking. In the American Chinese cuisine vegetables are often served as garnish while the authentic Chinese cuisine emphasize vegetables. Also, most of the time authentic Chinese cuisine uses many types of Asian leafy vegetables such as gai lan and bok choy, and also uses seafood. American Chinese cuisine is less spicy and flavored than the authentic one. Also these cuisine serves dishes that are quickly cooked and in a lot of oil, using inexpensive ingredients. Most common cooking techniques tend to be deep-frying, pan-frying and stir-frying. American Chinese cuisine is designed in such way that the customer is served properly no matter of its ethnicity. Many restaurants have their menu lists written both in English and Chinese. When it comes to food Chinese are not resisting to imports. Traditional Chinese cuisine has a distinctive assemblage of special ingredients some of them borrowed from other people. This costume of using ingredients with many types of origins is being also used in nowadays-American Chinese cuisine. This way the usage of fruits, sheep and goat meat was imported from the people of Central Asia.
Preparation Methods for American Chinese Cooking Edit
Preparation methods for a traditional Chinese dish can get sometimes very complex and highly distinctive when compared with other country cuisine. It is a whole process that implies sometimes skills, sometimes dedication or experience. What is important in the American Chinese cuisine is to make a distinction and division between the starchy food, grains called Fan, and Ts’ai, dishes made with meat or vegetables. In order to cook a balanced meal both Fan and Ts’ai ingredients have to be used by chefs in appropriate amounts. Fan (grains) are usually boiled or steamed while meat and vegetables are mixed together in different ways. Finally we will obtain a Fan half of the meal and a Ts’ai half of the meal both combining in unique dishes.
Special Equipment for American Chinese Cooking Edit
One of the most tools used in the American Chinese cuisine is the wok. This utensil is usually made of steel or heavy iron, has two handles and it looks like a concave pan. Usually it is used for deep-frying, stir-frying, pan-frying, stewing or steaming. This utensil that is known from ancient times it has been nowadays adapted to the modern use. The special Chinese spatula was designed to serve for stir-frying in the wok. All the edges of the spatula are rounded so that it fits the shape of the pan. Generally the Chinese spatula are larger than the usual ones allowing this way the tossing and stirring of large food quantities.
American Chinese Food Traditions and Festivals Edit
All the dishes cooked in the Chinese cuisine are a bit different. Most people when asked about Chinese food think first at stir-fried dishes accompanied with the ubiquitous rice and a cup of tea. Traditional Chinese food that is served during any national festival or celebration was brought to America and adapted to their cuisine. A traditional American Chinese meal should always contain good balanced portions of Ts’ai and Fan. But what are these. Ts’ai is a mixture made with meat and vegetables while Fan represents some grains and starchy food. In any meal these two dishes are served together, not mixed eatch one having its own pot. Such a dish is called wonton. In order to prepare a good Ts’ai chefs have to be really careful how they mix the ingredients and flavors and how they prepare them. For instance, pork meat may be slice shredded, diced or ground and after that combined with different vegetables.
People in American Chinese Food Edit
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During the 19th century Chinese cuisine started to develop in America. Chinese restauranteurs started to cook traditional dishes to the American people. The impact that the Chinese cuisine had over the Americans was so big that in no time a real industry and a unique American Chinese cuisine developed. Still, in order to satisfy the culinary demans that the Americans had, Chinese chefs had to adujust traditional cuisine to a more modern one. So the new modern American Chinese cuisine targeted non-Chinese customers, and the food that chef all over America prepared for them was a little less spicy using sometimes American ingredients.