General Tso's Chicken

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Wed Jan 9 04:32:04 UTC 2002

   A New York City dish?  This would probably be news to General Tso.
   The "General Tso's Chicken Page" on the web states that it probably comes from Peng's restaurant in New York City, about 1974.  The page is cited in a note by "The Straight Dope."
   "General Tso's Chicken" is not in John Mariani's ENCYCLOPEDIA OF AMERICAN FOOD.
   NEW YORK magazine, 2 April 1979, had a long feature article, "New York's Chinese Restaurants."  I didn't spot the General anywhere else but on page 51, col. 1:

*  & 1/2*  PENG'S
   ...General Tso's chicken ($7.95*), in a crisp, sweet, garlic-studded coat with scallions and ginger, is wonderful.
(...)(Col. 2--ed.)  It's 2:40 now and for all I know it may be the number-four chef manning the wok, but General Tso's chicken is garlicked to transcendence.
Peng's, 219 East 44th Street, 682-8050.

   The General's chicken (the name, at least) was probably inspired by the Colonel Sanders.
   It should be noted that there were other Chinese generals.  Hunam, 845 Second Avenue, at 45th Street, on page 48, col. 2, served "General Gau's duckling ($7.95*)."
   I'll see if I can find an earlier cite in the CUEs and NEW YORKs.

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