Battle of the Dishes

Egg Foo Young Engagement: Gourmet House of Hong Kong vs. Desert Jade

Egg Foo Young -- which can be spelled almost as many ways as it can be made -- is the kind of dumbed-down but delicious Americanized Chinese food most of us grew up on. It's basically a nicely browned omelet shaped like a patty, or sometimes a pancake, which usually has a bit of meat and veggies (often, just one or the other) inside. Now here's the good part: the whole thing comes ladled with soy sauce-based brown "gravy" and a sprinkle of green onion. It's comfort food, no matter how you spell it or where it came from.

See also: -- Ten Favorite Chinese Restaurants in Greater Phoenix -- Johnny Chu Dishes on Hong Kong Street Food and the Questionable Authenticity of Local Chinese Restaurants -- China Magic Noodle House Named One of 50 Best Chinese Restaurants in U.S.

Some food historians contend that a much more elegant variation of egg foo young originated in Shanghai; others suggest it was a specialty of Canton. Either way, it probably evolved here in the States in the hands of Chinese railroad workers who cooked for themselves and each other, opening the first Chinese restaurants in San Francisco during the Gold Rush.

Let's take a look at two popular Chinese restaurants -- Gourmet House of Hong Kong and Desert Jade -- and see whose egg foo young is more egg-cellent.

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Nikki Buchanan