Are Chinese restaurants more American than apple pie?
Jennifer 8 Lee thinks so in her new book, The Fortune Cookie Chronicles: Adventures in the world of Chinese Food. Here’s a quick review.
Did you know that there are twice as many Chinese restaurants as there are McDonald franchises. Somewhere around 40,000 in the United States there are more of these than the number of McDonalds, BKs and KFCs combined. How about fortune cookies? Are they Chinese or Japanese? I guess that depends on who you ask. Whowouldathunkit?
The Fortune Cookie Chronicles is a fun and insightful read. A must-read in the ABC curriculum. If you thought Chinese food and what goes on in the kitchens of Chinese restaurants were a mystery before….
We’d break open the fortune cookies for the message inside, rarely eating the cookie. The cheerfully misspelled, awkwardly phrased, but wise words of the Chinese fortune cookie sages gave me comfort. My parents’ bookshelves were lined with Chinese philosophical classics like Confucius’s Analects and the I Ching. For a girl who could not untangle the thicket of Chinese characters in those opaque and mysterious books, the little slips of insight represented the distillation of hundreds of years of Chinese wisdom.
Then came a shocking revelation.
Fortune cookies weren’t Chinese.