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Crab Rangoon facts for kids

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Crab Rangoons
CrabRangoon.jpg
Type Dumpling
Course Appetizer
Place of origin United States
Main ingredients Wonton, cream cheese, crab meat or imitation crab meat, scallions, garlic
Crab Rangoon
Chinese
Literal meaning Crab horn
Alternative Chinese name
Traditional Chinese
Literal meaning Fried crab horn
Second alternative Chinese name
Traditional Chinese 仰光
Literal meaning Crab Rangoon

Crab Rangoon, sometimes called crab puffs, crab rangoon puffs, or cheese wontons, are filled crisp dumpling appetizers served primarily in American Chinese restaurants.

Preparation

The filling is made with a combination of cream cheese, crab meat or imitation crab meat, scallions or onion, garlic, and other flavorings. A small amount of the filling is wrapped in each Chinese wonton wrapper. The dumpling is then shaped by folding the wrapper over into a triangle, by creating a four-pointed star, by gathering it up into flower or purse shape, or by twisting it into the traditional wonton shape.

The appetizers are cooked to crispness by deep-frying in vegetable oil or by baking. They can be served hot or cold. In North America, crab Rangoon is often served with a sauce for dipping: either soy sauce, plum sauce, duck sauce, sweet and sour sauce, or hot Chinese mustard.

History

Crab Rangoon was on the menu of the "Polynesian-style" restaurant Trader Vic's in San Francisco since at least 1956. Although the appetizer is allegedly derived from an authentic Burmese recipe, the dish was probably invented in the United States by Victor Bergeron, founder of Trader Vic's. A "Rangoon crab a la Jack" was mentioned as a dish at a Hawaiian-style party in 1952, but without further detail, and so may or may not be the same thing. There is additional evidence that Wayne Schmidt helped commercially develop the dish as a popular appetizer in the Midwest in the early 1980s.

Though the history of Crab Rangoon is unclear, cream cheese—like other cheese—is mostly nonexistent in Southeast Asian and Chinese cuisine, so it is unlikely that the dish is actually of east or southeast Asian origin.

Names

They may be referred to as crab pillows, crab cheese wontons, or cheese wontons.

In the Pacific Northwest states of the US, crab Rangoon are also known as crab puffs, although this primarily refers to versions that use puff pastry as a wrapper instead of wonton.

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