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Behind the Kitchen Door: Grace Young’s East-Meets-West Kitchen

Robyn Doyon-Aitken; Text, images, and floor plan by Charles Miller; kitchen before shot provided by Grace Young
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Text by Charles Miller

Measuring in at just over 60 square feet, cookbook author Grace Young‘s kitchen is small by contemporary standards. But relative to most kitchens in her SoHo neighborhood in New York City, it’s positively enormous. And every inch of space is put to good use.

Known for her expertise in Chinese cuisine in general and wok cooking in particular (and for traveling with a 14-inch wok in her carry-on luggage), Grace has won a host of awards for her cookbooks, which celebrate authentic Chinese recipes. Her most recent, Stir-Frying to the Sky’s Edge, took home the 2011 James Beard award for the best international cookbook. There’s even a dedicated group of readers, the Wok Wednesdays crew, cooking their way through the entire book.

I dropped in on Grace to learn first-hand about how she uses her Big Apple kitchen to create traditional Chinese dishes. The aroma of fresh garlic and ginger hitting her sizzling-hot wok drew me into the room, and the efficiency and charm of the space made me never want to leave.

Inspired to fire up your wok? Grace has that effect on people. Pick a favorite recipe from Grace and stir-fry, steam, deep fry, or smoke. . .you guessed it. . .to the sky’s edge.

Featured Recipes from Grace Young
Stir-Fried Chili Beef with Bell Peppers and Snow Peas recipe Steamed Salmon with Leeks, Shiitake, and Soy recipe
Stir-Fried Chili Beef with Bell Peppers and Snow Peas   Steamed Salmon with Leeks, Shiitake, and Soy
Tea-Smoked Shrimp Salad with Mango recipe Vegetable Tempura recipe
Tea-Smoked Shrimp Salad with Mango   Vegetable Tempura

Read the article Four Ways to Cook in Your Wok for Grace’s tips on wok cooking.


Leave a comment on Grace’s Must-Have Cooking Tools post for your chance to win a 14-in carbon-steel flat bottom wok and more of Grace’s favorite cooking tools.


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  • Elise913 | 02/14/2013

    Oh, how wonderful you kitchen is...I didn't expect that you would share where you purchased your beautiful cabinets and appliances! Great tips! I love your kitchen gods and display shelf...my grandmother had a display shelf on either side of her kitchen sink, and now I have some of her lovely items. Thank you for having me into your home!

  • tmann | 02/11/2013

    How wonderful to hear the details of how Grace and her husband went about planning their kitchen. I especially like the deep countertops, something I would love to have. Thanks for providing it.

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