P.F. Chang's China Bistro, Inc.'s 40-plus restaurant chain, operating in 19 states, owes much of its success to founder Paul Fleming's unique idea of pairing oriental cuisine with American-style service. At the outset, when he opened the first of the restaurants in Scottsdale, Arizona, Fleming broke with the traditional Chinese restaurant format. With his collaborator, chef Philip Chiang, he devised a comparatively limited menu that featured far fewer dishes than the menus of typical, full-service, Chinese restaurants. Incorporating an American steak house dining style and a formidable selection of wines and cheeses, P.F. Chang's offers such additional oriental restaurant anomalies as espresso and cappuccino. Although P.F. Chang's China Bistros are stylish in decor, displaying motifs from the Ming and T'ang Dynasties and hand-painted murals, the dishes are moderately priced, partly because one of Fleming's aims was to provide high quality but affordable Chinese food for "the masses."

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Edamame Dumplings


EDAMAME DUMPLINGS
P.F. Chang's China Bistro Copycat Recipe

Makes 30

1 lb. edamame beans, frozen, shelled
1 teaspoon chili paste
1 tablespoon fresh ginger, minced
1 tablespoon fresh garlic, minced
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1/2 oz. lemongrass, minced
4 oz. white silken tofu
1/2 tablespoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black or white pepper
3 tablespoons tahini (sesame seed paste)
1 package (30) round potsticker wrappers

Cook the frozen edamame beans in boiling water for 9 minutes. Blanch in an ice bath for 5 minutes to stop the cooking process. Blend all the ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Blend in the silken tofu. Spoon 1–2 teaspoons of the mixture onto each wonton wrapper and follow the folding instructions. Steam for about 7 minutes or until mixture is hot throughout.

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