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Jia! / Diana Danxia Zheng

  • Now Serving 727 N. Broadway, Unit 133 Los Angeles, CA 90012 (map)

Author Diana Danxia Zheng in conversation with Oliver Wang - Culture Writer, Scholar, DJ and Professor of Sociology CSULB. Book signing to follow. FREE EVENT. RSVP to hello@nowservingla.com

Jia! — a book about the food, culture, and people of Swatow, Teochew, and the Teoswa diaspora.

Swatow is a city of over 5 million people in eastern Guangdong province, the southern belly of China. Many ethnically Chinese residents of Southeast Asia can trace their roots to Swatow and Teochew (“Chaozhou” in Mandarin), a nearby city of almost 3 million. 

The cities of Swatow and Teochew share a culture that includes deep appreciation for food, tea, and opera. Local residents often refer to their region and shared language as Teoswa 潮汕: Teo 潮 from Teochew (潮州) + Swa 汕 from Swatow (汕头). In the Teoswa language, Jia! means Eat! And in Swatow,  food is the real local dialect.

Author, Diana Danxia Zheng spotlights Swatow ingredients and recipes, provides an overview of the Teoswa region’s history and diaspora, and includes stories and interviews with the characters behind the stoves. Jia! covers traditional recipes from Swatow, but also adaptations for American kitchens, and some new inventions that may not be traditionally Teoswa but are pretty delicious anyway.