[NPR] In The World Of Chefs, Asian American Women Are Turning Up The Heat

October 17, 2014

[NPR.ORG] Food writers have argued that Asian-American chefs are having a moment. Besides running popular food establishments, chefs David Chang, Roy Choi and Eddie Huang have each inspired his own cultlike fan base. All three have published best-selling books; Huang’s Fresh Off the Boat: A Memoir is the basis for a highly anticipated sitcom debuting this fall on ABC. Choi will host a new CNN reality show on LA street food launching this month. Chang, considered the pioneer of this culinary trend, boasts a personal Twitter following 120,000 strong (double the number of his restaurant Momofuku’s followers).

But there’s a glaring absence in this most recent celebration of Asian-American chefs: women. Chinese-American restaurateur Joyce Chen was one of five trailblazing chefs commemorated by a limited edition set of USPS Forever stamps this year, but top honors awarded to contemporary Asian-American female chefs such as Cara Stadler and Anita Lo seem few and far between, perhaps symptomatic of a broader gender bias in the industry.