Chinese Produce You’ve Never Eaten

Published in Gourmet Live 01.18.12
Josey Miller uncovers seven Asian fruits and vegetables to try

During a recent trip to Hong Kong, I snapped photo after photo of striking fruits and vegetables, some of which looked vaguely familiar and some of which I’d never seen before. Back at home in New York, I wanted to identify them and learn how to use them in my own kitchen, so I enlisted the help of Chris Cheung, executive chef of Lair, a Chinese fusion restaurant not far from New York’s Chinatown. He shared his kitchen expertise for the following seven food finds—all of which are worth trying…with one possible exception.

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Chinese Apple

This type of apple, or ping guo, is better enjoyed as a snack than for cooking, says Cheung: “They’re bright, crisp, and a little sour with a pear quality in their lightness.” He explains that the Chinese place a lot of emphasis on texture when it comes to food, as well as medicinal qualities; in this case, eating one of these would very likely “keep the doctor away.”


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