If you've always wanted to know what really goes on inside a Chinese restaurant, you're in luck. A restaurant employee recently did a Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything) entitled Your Typical Chinese Restaurant Employee, and he answered a lot of users' questions that touched on everything except the exact recipes (some things have to remain a secret!). He wrote, "I am Chinese. Parents are Chinese. Parents own a typical take out Chinese food restaurant. I have worked there almost all my life and I know almost all the ins and outs." Curious about his insider secrets? Read on for some of the standout questions and answers, and then catch up on the whole AMA here.
1. The secret to authentic Chinese food is the sauce.
Someone mentioned that they try to make Chinese food at home but it's never nearly as good — not even "as good as the worst Chinese takeout." Turns out, the major difference is the sauce.
2. Using a wok makes a difference.
Another reason your homemade stir fries and lo mein might not taste authentic is that using a wok is far superior to a regular skillet. "The ability to flash cook in a wok makes a big difference believe it or not."
3. North American Chinese food is cheaper.
4. The secret to the chicken in dishes like General Tso's is the breading.
5. Yes, many restaurants really do use the same images for the menu.
6. Don't believe a restaurant if it says it doesn't have MSG . . . it's already in soy sauce and many other sauces.