We welcome Jon Kung to Literati to celebrate the release of his new book Kung Food. He'll be joined in conversation by Ann Delisi.
About the Book: An exciting and unexpected collection of 100 recipes that re-examines Chinese American food Jon Kung grew up as a "third-culture" kid: Born in Los Angeles, raised in Hong Kong and Toronto, and now living in Detroit, Jon learned to embrace his diasporic identity in the kitchen after pivoting his career from law school graduate to being a cook.
When the pandemic shut down his immensely popular popup, he turned to social media-not just as a means of creative expression, but as a way to teach and inspire. Over time, Jon discovered that expressing himself through food not only reflected his complicated identities, it affirmed them.
In Kung Food, he breaks the boundaries of flavors in chapters such as:
- Snacky Snacks, Bites, and Cravings (Sesame Shrimp Toast, Vegan Fried Chicken Sandwich)
- Noodles & Dumplings (Ginger Scallion Noodles, Buffalo Chicken Rangoon, Lamb Curry Dumplings)
- Rice & Congee ("Clay Pot" Rice Tahdig, Mushroom Fried Rice)
- Stir Fries (Szechuan Paneer, Faygo Orange Chicken)
- Kung Foo Means "with Effort" (Hong Kong Chicken and Waffles, Dan Dan Lasagna)
Through stunning, playful, and high-energy photos and Jon's wit and humility, he brings forward a collection of recipes that blend cultural traditions, ingredients, and flavors with his ultimate goal of redefining what Chinese American food can be.
Jon Kung is a self-taught cook who was known for his popups and intricate dinners served out of his secret kitchen Kung Food Market/Studio He is now a full-time content creator on TikTok, YouTube, and Instagram. Jon has been featured in USA Today, CNN, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and Interview magazine and lives in Detroit with his partner Jon (yes, he knows) and their dog, Mochi.
Ann Delisi has been a part of the Detroit media landscape for more than 35 years. A Wayne State Music School grad and former WDET Music Host and Music Director, Ann returned to WDET in 2009 to host Essential Music, a program dedicated to exploring the history of music, creating a platform for Detroit musicians, discovering new music and listening to what is next on the musical horizon. Ann creates features that highlight iconic artists, landmark albums and has curated hundreds of shows. As an interviewer, she's talked with everyone from David Bowie to White House Photographer Pete Souza to Iggy Pop and her curiosity about the creative spirit led to the podcast series, Essential Conversations. Her passion for food and those who make it led to another podcast/broadcast, Essential Cooking, with her co-host, award-winning chef, James Rigato.