Asian Food Trending Very Quickly


Asian food, and particularly Chinese food, is America’s favorite ethnic cuisine. In fact, when immigrants from China arrive in the United States, they’re often shocked to learn that there’s a Chinese restaurant – or an Americanized version of a Chinese restaurant – in almost every neighborhood. Asian food continues to trend for a variety of reasons, and there’s no sign that it’ll slow down anytime soon.

The Beginning of the Asian Cuisine Trend

Yong Chen is a history professor at UC Irvine, and he recently published a book called Chop Suey, USA: The Story of Chinese Food in America.” In his book, one of the most profound statements isn’t his shock over the number of Chinese restaurants in this country. Rather, it’s about the types of Chinese food that Westerners seem to love the most. For example, here in the United States, people go for dishes like chow mein and chop suey, which are staples for Chinese restaurants here. In truth, those dishes are rarely served in China, and they’re considered obscure.

The End of the 19th Century

Per Chen, Americans’ love of Chinese cuisine likely started around the end of the 19th century, when wealthy people would visit Chinatowns across the country in search of exotic forms of entertainment. Of course, those without money couldn’t attend these shows, and they wanted to experience China for themselves. By the early 20th century, people were making more money, and this meant that a solid group of middle-class citizens could now afford to have others cook for them. This was their chance to experience China for themselves, and they would often visit Asian restaurants for their opportunities.

Today’s Most Successful Asian Restaurants

These days, people appreciate all kinds of Asian cuisine, including Chinese, Japanese, Cantonese, Vietnamese, and many others. Although chain Chinese and Japanese restaurants can be found in most American cities these days, those who are doing the best for themselves are single-owner stand-alone restaurants often found on a side street or in a suburb. It’s here that chefs truly pour their heart and souls into creating dishes that reflect their Asian culture, and they can share this culture with others. There’s no better feeling to a chef than making someone happy with a dish you’ve designed and prepared.

Increasing Popularity

Chen was right when he said that most Westerners’ first Chinese food experience is with foods that are no longer popular in China. However, because of the wide acceptance of different types of cuisines, Asian chefs are feeling more flexible in their creativity, and they offer up dishes that aren’t like the ones you’d see at a typical Chinese buffet or takeout restaurant. These chefs use ingredients local to their native countries and cook them per local customs and traditions. This results in a brand-new experience for many diners, and these days, diners certainly enjoy the adventure.

Asian food has been popular in the United States for decades, but only recently have chefs been afforded so much creativity. The appeal of delicious, sweet-salty-sour food has never been stronger, and people flock to these restaurants in droves in hopes of experiencing something new.

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