Kung Food: Chinese American Recipes from a Third-Culture Kitchen

Clarkson Potter. Oct. 2023. 288p. ISBN 9780593578179. $35. COOKING
In his first cookbook, TikTok-famous, self-taught cook Kung brings together a mixture of food flavors from his upbringing in Hong Kong and Toronto, plus his current residence, Detroit, and beyond. He refers to his food style as “third-culture,” aiming to offer a thoughtful and inventive take on cooking infused by his lived experience of being immersed in multiple cultures. After an introduction and multipage pantry list are recipes for the stocks, oils, and sauces that will come up in many of the dishes that follow. An enticing chapter called “Slow, Hot, and Wet” features soups and stews. The most extensive chapter, “Noodles + Dumplings,” begins with a helpful section explaining their different cooking methods. Another chapter of note is “Kung Fu Means ‘With Effort.’” These recipes require time and patience, like Thanksgiving turkey congee, and an interesting take on Hong Kong chicken and waffles using Shaoxing wine, fish sauce, and a Szechuan-spiced maple syrup.
VERDICT Vivid photos, a clear layout, and a complete index make this a welcome package and good addition for libraries.
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