Immigration, Assimilation, Ethnicity and All That Jazz

“Real” Chinese food poll

Posted by chinesecanuck on February 12, 2009

Since many people argue that foods like beef and brocolli or sweet and sour pork/chicken aren’t “real” Chinese foods, because they were “invented” in the west, what about foods found at restaurants in Hong Kong which use non-Chinese ingredients?  Are those foods real?  In other words, are egg custard tarts (sweet, egg based custard in tartlet shells – very popular at dim sum), Hong Kong style milk tea (strong black tea with condensed/evaporated milk), yeen-yeung (half coffee, half HK style milk tea), etc “real”?  


2 Responses to ““Real” Chinese food poll”

  1. Harry Li said

    I don’t think it’s quite Chinese in the traditional sense, milk tea and egg tarts seem more like a distinctive Hong Kong cuisine… but the thing is, does it matter?

  2. i can see the discourse of nationalism classifying food for us: this is Chinese, this is Belgian, and so on, and so forth… the truth is food has always circulated, knows no national boundaries, and the various dishes that appear as ‘national’ and inflate our sense of pride have in fact been cooked here and there, with more or less variation. if you have access to the database, try this article: (Hiroko, 2008, Delicious Food in a Beautiful Country: Nationhood and Nationalism in Discourses on Food in Contemporary Japan)

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