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About Karen Kao China

Year of the Pig

I am a pig. In the colloquial sense but also according to the Chinese zodiac. The Chinese assign a different animal to each year in a cycle that runs for 12 years. Starting 5 February 2019, it’ll be the Year of the Pig. That sounds like a long way off but in China, new year’s […]

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Art China Film

Made in China

There isn’t much Chinese art in my home. A scroll we bought at a museum in Xi’an. Some Concession Era posters and maps. A cane by youngest son bought at the Great Bazaar in the old walled city of Shanghai. Reproductions, every one, albeit made in China. But isn’t that what it means to be […]

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About Karen Kao Travel

How to Get Lost

I have done a fair amount of traveling in my time. Most of Europe, parts of Asia, the United States, of course. But a round-the-world trip is a whole other thing. Our plan is simple. To start from home and keep on going until we make it back. Easy, right? Yes, if you’re a free […]

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Amsterdam Chinese-American Food Los Angeles

Food Fight

There’s a hilarious scene in Portnoy’s Complaint in which Alexander Portnoy mulls over the mysteries of Chinese food. the Lord has lifted the ban on pork dishes for the obedient children of Israel [but] the eating of lobster Cantonese is considered by God (Whose mouthpiece on earth, in matters pertaining to food, is my Mom) […]

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About Karen Kao Food Travel

2018 | My Year in Food

In 2018, I published no books and made no book tours. What the hell did I do with my time? I wrote and traveled, read and gardened. But above all, I ate. So why not take a look back at 2018 and a sneak preview of what’s to come in 2019 by way of my […]