By Juliet Fang

Xiao long bao, a Chinese soup dumpling originating from the Jiangsu province. (Photo by Juliet Fang)

Like so many first-generation immigrant kids, my elementary and middle school years were plagued by an overwhelming desire to abandon my Chinese roots and embody the platonic ideal of an “American” kid. I shunned the clothes my mom brought from China, let my Mandarin fall out of practice, and, most of all, rejected my food. Hiding my dried squid underneath greasy cafeteria tables, I was utterly embarrassed of the pinched noses my “smelly” food attracted.

But now, the

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