Joyce Chen

Joyce Chen

Infobox Chef
name = Joyce Chen

caption =
birthdate = birth date|1917|9|14
birthplace = Beijing, China
deathdate = death date and age|1994|8|23|1917|9|14
deathplace =
style = Beijing cuisine
education =
ratings =
prevrests = Joyce Chen Restaurant
television = Joyce Chen Cooks
awards =
website =

Joyce Chen (September 14, 1917August 23, 1994 [ New York Times Obituary] ) was a Chinese chef, restaurateur, and entrepreneur. Born in Beijing, China, Chen and husband Thomas left Shanghai, China in 1949 as Communists were taking over the country. [ Joyce Chen -] Chen settled in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Chen opened her first restaurant, "Joyce Chen Restaurant," in 1958. In 1960 she began teaching Chinese cooking at the Cambridge and Boston Adult Education Centers, introducing many Americans to homestyle and gourmet Chinese cooking techniques. In 1962, she published her influential cookbook, "The Joyce Chen Cookbook". [ [ Joyce Chen, 76, U.S. Popularizer Of Mandarin Cuisine - New York Times ] ] In 1968, she starred in her own cooking show on PBS called "Joyce Chen Cooks." [] Chen later introduced a line of Chinese cooking utensils. [ Joyce Chen -] Chen is credited with popularizing the Mandarin style of Chinese cooking in the United States.

Chen wanted to make Chinese food accessible to the American public. Since her first restaurant was in an Italian area, she renamed potstickers, or pork-filled Chinese dumplings to Peking Ravioli on her menus. Chinese restaurants and diners in the greater Boston, Massachusetts area still call the dumplings "Peking Ravioli" or simply "ravs." [] [ Peking Ravioli]

Chen died of Alzheimer's disease in 1994. [ Joyce Chen -] Her namesake restaurant closed in 1998. [ Boston Business Journal - Joyce Chen brand seeks boost from new product] Chen's daughter Helen Chen is CEO of cookware company Joyce Chen, Inc. Son Henry (d. 2007) owned Joyce Chen Unlimited, a retail store in Acton, Massachusetts, which closed in March 2008. [ : Joyce Chen Unlimited Closing - 19 March 2008] Her son Stephen Chen is president of Joyce Chen Foods, Inc. [ (About Us)] [ Boston Business Journal - Joyce Chen brand seeks boost from new product]

Many Joyce Chen disciples still own and run Boston area Chinese restaurants. Among them is Pui Chan from The Wok in Wellesley, MA. Chan worked for Chen starting in 1976 at the Alewife location. Chan opened his own restaurant with Chen's encouragement in 1978. []


* "Joyce Chen Cook Book", Joyce Chen Gourmet Products, Cambridge, MA, 1962, 1982.

NAME = Chen, Joyce
SHORT DESCRIPTION = American chef of Chinese cuisine
DATE OF BIRTH = September 14, 1917
PLACE OF BIRTH = Beijing, China
DATE OF DEATH = August 23, 1994

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