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."




Garlic Snap Peas

P.F. Chang’s China Bistro Copycat Recipe

Serves 2-4

2 cups fresh sugar snap peas
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1/8 teaspoon salt
dash ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced

Prepare snap peas by cutting off the tips on each end of the pods. Preheat oil in a wok or medium skillet over medium heat. Saute peas in oil with salt and pepper for 2 to 3 minutes. Toss peas constantly while sauteing until peas are cooked and still crispy. When the pods get a few dark brown spots they are done. Add minced garlic, toss briefly  then immediately pour the peas out onto a serving platter. Be careful not to cook garlic long enough to burn or it will develop a bitter taste. Toss constantly for only 10-15 seconds.

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