Authentic Chinese cooking

TRAVERSE CITY — Join Chinese-American chef Candice Lee from 10 a.m.-1 p.m. June 7 at the NMC Great Lakes Culinary Institute to learn about, make and enjoy authentic Chinese cuisine.

Lee will be assisted by Chef Harlan “Pete” Peterson, former owner and chef of the legendary Tapawingo restaurant in Ellsworth. Peterson and other Traverse City area residents took Lee’s class in Beijing in April, 2013.

Lee lived in Beijing from 2006-2013, spending five years at Black Sesame Kitchen, a private kitchen and cooking school located in the heart of Beijing’s old district. Along with her time at Black Sesame, recently featured on CBS “Sunday Morning” news/entertainment show, Lee has pursued her love of food by eating her way through her travels in China.  She has appeared on MSNBC and Lonely Planet TV, as well as written for Frommer’s guide books. 

Lee will discuss the different regional styles of Chinese cooking and her experiences living in Beijing. She will present Chinese cooking techniques,  such as the cleaver technique, and proper ingredient preparation, including home preparation of tofu, a commonly misunderstood ingredient.  Demonstrations will include dumpling making and several traditional dishes, which students will share at the end of the session: 

  • Smashed Cilantro Cucumber Salad - a great, crisp way to start off a meal.  The incorporation of vinegar and cilantro into this dish provide a refreshing and mouth-watering experience.
  • Mapo Tofu - a traditional Sichuan dish that is flavorful and spicy, a great representation of what Sichuan food is all about. 
  • Kungpao Chicken- now synonymous with crispy chicken with goopy sweet sauce, the dish will be demonstrated in its traditional way, from deboning a thigh, velveting, and stir-frying, and cooked into a delicious sweet, sour and spicy dish.

The class is presented in conjunction with the International Affairs Forum’s China conference June 5 and 6. Fee for the cooking class is $100 or $80 for conference registrants. Sign up at (search Chinese Cooking) or call (800) 836-0717.

To register for the IAF China conference, go to or call 231-995-1700.

Release date: may 15, 2014

For more information:

Candice Lee
(781) 856-1955 (Massachusetts)

Pete Peterson
(231) 883-6051

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