The New York Times (NYT) once again tried to strip India of its legacy and attribute one of its famous fusion dishes to Pakistan portraying it as “South Asian food.”
Recently, NYT published an article by a Pakistani-origin American, Zainab Shah, on the Indo-Chinese delicacy ‘Chicken Manchurian’ and described it as a “stalwart of Pakistani Chinese cooking.”
For the uninitiated, Chicken Manchurian is a really spicy dish that is made of Chicken (sometimes with cauliflower and paneer). It is available at any restaurant serving ‘Chinese food’ in India.
Netizens were quick to school both Ms Shah and NYT for not checking facts before going ahead and publishing the report.
It is a recorded fact that Chicken Manchurian was created by Chef Nelson Wang in Tiretta Bazaar (popularly known as Old Chinatown) in the Tangra area of Kolkata (Calcutta).
Chef Wang moved to Mumbai (then Bombay) and, eventually a few years later and some struggle, opened his own restaurant in Kemps Corner called China Town that secured a Chinese catering contract at the Cricket Club of India. When a club member requested something spicy and different, Chef Wang decided to serve them Chicken Manchurian.
It is fact universally acknowledged that many original Chinese cuisines have been modified to create fusion dishes to provide them with a distinctly Indian flavour.