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July 19, 2013
Green beans with peanuts and chile de arbol in Chinese serving dish

Before she died, my maternal grandmother, whom we called Lali (remember I’ve told you about her before?) gave me Gloria Miller’s Thousand Recipe Chinese Cookbook. She was fascinated with Chinese cookery. She was also very good at it. What she loved the most were the stir-fry dishes: fast, tasty and healthy.

So, she bought herself a wok.

I couldn’t begin to count how many wok-made dishes I ate at her house during those long summers I visited her and my grandfather, after they moved to the Californian desert.

After she passed away, that wok found its way into my kitchen. I’ve cherished it. I’ve prized it. I haven’t used it! I’ve dragged it through so many house moves that I’ve also managed to lose its cord. It’s an electric wok. It’s real pretty, too. It’s hers. And in my mind, it is inseparable from her Miller’s cookbook, so I didn’t try to cook “her” Chinese dishes for years. And here and there, I’ve looked for that cord…

Continue reading A Taste of Barrio Chino: Green Beans with Peanuts and Chile de Arbol


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