Simu Liu Wants You to Know What Authentic Chinese Food Tastes Like
Plus, the actor tells EatingWell that his favorite frozen food is even loved by his parents.
Simu Liu has entered the food space, and to say we're excited is an understatement.
The actor, best known for Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings, Kim's Convenience and the upcoming Barbie, has joined frozen Chinese food brand MìLà as their new chief content officer, where he plans to guide the company's marketing and communication efforts.
But this isn't just a normal business endeavor for the star; Liu was fully inspired by both the food and the mission that MìLà offers.
"Many Asian kids, like myself, grew up being made fun of for the taste, look or smell of food that wasn't familiar to other kids," Liu said in a press release. "MìLà is demystifying Chinese cuisine and creating an inclusive conversation around third culture in a way that I'm thrilled to be a part of."
Related:Whenever I Miss My Mom's Cooking, I Make These Delicious Veggie Dumplings
In an interview with EatingWell, MìLà co-founder Jennifer Liao talked about the common misconceptions about Chinese food that the brand plans to combat, including authenticity in their products versus what's popularized in the country.
"What's popular in the U.S. right now is more American Asian cuisine, like Panda Express and P.F. Changs where you have orange chicken, or General Tso's, all of those are actually American dishes that didn't originate in China," she said. "I really enjoy those, but it's just its own cuisine."
But there's also the issue of balancing authenticity with marketability, and MìLà plans to create more inclusive products while maintaining their signature flavors.
"Right now, we're looking at how do we have authentic Chinese food here, but also make it our own in a way where we have these traditional, classic dishes that we have available, but we'll also have eventual evolution in terms of the flavor profile and the ingredients," Liao explains. "For soup dumplings, there's no vegan or gluten-free options that exist. So there's the question of, is this authentic if you change what that soup dumpling looks like? And I think that yes, it's authentic to us because we're Chinese American living in the U.S. and this is what the audience and the market looks like."
Speaking of their xiao long bao, when EatingWell asked Simu Liu if there is a MìLà product that reminds him of his childhood, he had a clear answer.
"Their frozen soup dumplings are restaurant-quality and something to write home about," Liu tells EatingWell. "I've experienced it firsthand with my parents, whose stamp of approval is not so easily given. When they raved about the products, I knew I had to get involved."
We tried the pork soup dumplings, which is MìLà's self-proclaimed "hero product," and we agree: they're worth the hype. The dumplings are deliciously juicy and only take 11 minutes to make in your steamer. They're also available with shrimp & pork and savory chicken fillings.
Not sure what to pair these soup dumplings with? Try our Simple Cabbage Salad or Pea Pod and Carrot Stir-Fry for a fresh bite.
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