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Food

Cuisine of other nations influences ‘Chinese food’

This photo from Feb. 6, 2013 shows a woman walking out a shop selling seasonal items ahead of Chinese New Year in Chinatown in Bangkok, Thailand. Chinese New Year, celebrated this year on January 31, involves a litany of symbolic foods. (Sakchai Lalit/The Associated Press)
This photo from Feb. 6, 2013 shows a woman walking out a shop selling seasonal items ahead of Chinese New Year in Chinatown in Bangkok, Thailand. Chinese New Year, celebrated this year on January 31, involves a litany of symbolic foods. (Sakchai Lalit/The Associated Press)
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Nelson Cho isn’t just Chinese-American: He’s Chinese-Cuban-Peruvian-American, which means he grew up on the shredded beef dish ropa vieja, the fried chicken called chicharrones de pollo and other Cuban specialties. “We ate mostly Cuban or Spanish growing up,” says 40-year-old Cho, whose family founded the Peruvian-Chinese restaurant Flor de Mayo in New York. But for Chinese New Year, Cho says, it was steamed oysters and roast pork all the way. “It was strictly traditional Chinese,” ...


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