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Mooncakes and Milk Bread: Sweet and Savory Recipes Inspired by Chinese Bakeries

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by Kristina Cho
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A thorough, enticing exploration of Chinese bakery treats, adapted for home kitchens.

Kristina Cho grew up in Cleveland, part of a restaurant-owning family with strong connections to Hong Kong. Cleveland had a Chinatown, but no Chinese bakeries. When Cho eventually found herself living in San Francisco, it was that city's Chinese bakeries that excited her culinary imagination the most. Bakery items became a focus for her ever more popular blog,

As Cho explains, the Chinese bakery first gained popularity in Hong Kong, influenced by long British rule, and often featuring adaptations of Western recipes to please the local palate. Chinese bakeries in the US reflect this interaction through an additional lens, serving families that may have been here for five generations or more.

Nearly every recipe in Mooncakes and Milk Bread is preceded by a headnote that explains the origin of the item, whether it's adapted from a traditional street food, a version of the egg tarts of the Portuguese in Macau or the result of an American cultural intersection.  Helpful step-by-step photo sequences demonstrate everything from shaping and filling a bun or dumpling to creating the iconic treats that are the book's title.

Wholly laudable.

Hardcover. Color photographs throughout.

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