Foodies refer to her as the Julia Child of Chinese food. Just as Julia made French cooking accessible to Americans, Cecilia Chiang introduced authentic Chinese cuisine to the U.S. after immigrating to San Francisco in 1959 where she opened her restaurant, The Mandarin, the following year.
We take them for granted now but restaurant favorites such as Peking duck, pot stickers, and hot and sour soup were introduced to the American palate by Cecilia Chiang in the 1960s. Her cooking set the standard for Chinese food in the U.S. and has influenced countless chefs over the decades. Cecilia’s son, Philip, went on to establish the hugely popular P.F. Chang’s restaurant chain, making their family an inspiration to other immigrants hoping to realize their dreams, too.