kung pao

\ ˈkəŋ-ˈpau̇ How to pronounce kung pao (audio) , ˈküŋ-, ˈku̇ŋ- \

Definition of kung pao

: being stir-fried or sometimes deep-fried and served in a spicy hot sauce usually with peanuts kung pao chicken

Examples of kung pao in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web And if not fried chicken, then go with a spicy kung pao iteration served with plenty of hot rice. Los Angeles Times, "Ring in New Year’s at home with bubbles and your favorite snacks," 27 Dec. 2020 The kung pao versions are the top seller for a reason. Sharyn Jackson, Star Tribune, "5 best things our food writers ate in the Twin Cities this week," 4 Dec. 2020 Business started slowly before critics, including late San Francisco Chronicle columnist Herb Caen, started singing the praises of the Northern Chinese cuisine, including kung pao chicken and twice cooked-pork, according to the Chronicle. NBC News, "The legacy of Cecilia Chiang, the 'Mother of Chinese food in America,' who died at 100," 30 Oct. 2020 The kung pao chicken packed a perfectly spicy and peanutty punch. Ali Francis, Bon Appétit, "My Perfect Nice Day Order Includes, Uh, One of Everything," 19 Oct. 2020 Roly China Fusion in Palm Springs offers poolside dining and its popular menu of small plates that include popcorn lobster and five-spice ribs as well as traditional Chinese entrees like kung pao beef and almond chicken. Patricia Doherty, Travel + Leisure, "California's Coolest New Outdoor Dining Venues — From Rooftops and Poolsides to Secret Gardens," 1 Oct. 2020 Fan, wearing a blue polo that matched his mask, explained to Grace Shi in Chinese which meals were spicy — the kung pao chicken — and which were vegetarian. Washington Post, "Groups feed hospital workers — and support restaurants, too," 10 Aug. 2020 Menu includes kung pao calamari, smoked salmon dip, cheese and meat board, white bean chili, lobster bisque, sandwiches, salads, grilled salmon, crab cakes, steaks and dessert. Gege Reed, The Courier-Journal, "Looking for an Easter meal? These restaurants in Louisville are serving up something special," 6 Apr. 2020 The four-course dinner is $45 and highlights dishes ranging from Rose's signature lychee salad with pork and habaneros to kung pao tofu and Greek chicken. The Washington Post, "© 1996-2016 The Washington Post," 8 Apr. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'kung pao.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of kung pao

1976, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for kung pao

borrowed from Chinese (Beijing) gōng bǎo "palace guardian" in the name of such dishes (as gōng bǎo jī dīng "kung pao diced chicken")

Note: The dish allegedly received its name because it was frequently served to Dīng Bǎozhēn (1820-86), a Qing (Ching) dynasty offical who served as the governor of Sichuan province (1876-86); his unofficial title was gōng bǎo.

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The first known use of kung pao was in 1976

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Last Updated

9 Jan 2021

Cite this Entry

“Kung pao.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/kung%20pao. Accessed 20 Jan. 2021.

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