Kevin Pang, The Takeout

Kevin Pang

The Takeout

Chicago, IL, United States

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  • Unknown
  • The Takeout
  • The AV Club
  • Vanity Fair
  • Hartford Courant

Past articles by Kevin:

Confessions of an accidental food writer

The first time I formed sentences into what I’d consider food writing happened 15 years ago, back when I was a cub reporter at the Los Angeles Times. I had stumbled upon a bakery specializing in wedding cakes that was configured most curiously—its showroom and bakery were one storefront apart, separated by a different business in between. What was in the middle? Improbably, a competing wedding… → Read More

The state of the plain fast food hamburger

The menu board at my local McDonald’s stretches across five vertical television screens, listing out items, price, and caloric level. One dish tucked away in a corner, lost in the sea of Jalapeno McChickens and Double Filet-O-Fishes, is the first item Dick and Mac McDonald sold at their San Bernardino, California restaurant in 1948: the hamburger. → Read More

Eat mentaiko spaghetti, the carbonara of the sea

Mentaiko spaghetti is my favorite of the Japanese-Western fusion cuisine known as Yoshoku. It takes marinated salted cod or pollock roe—briny little pink bits bursting with umami—and incorporates it in a creamy pasta that’s like a carbonara of the sea. → Read More

Hey Alton Brown, is a hot dog a sandwich?

We covered a lot of ground in our Alton Brown interview last week, but one topic missing from our conversation was around food. Actually, we did ask him one food question, and yes, it’s the food question you’re dying to hear. → Read More

Alton Brown on the return of Good Eats, filmmaking, and embracing wankiness

Alton Brown wanted to talk about something else. → Read More

The rumors are true: Popeyes' fried chicken sandwich is better than Chick-fil-A's

I’m able to separate politics and food, or if we’re being honest, I’m able to turn a blind eye. I find Chick-fil-A’s politics repugnant, but they’re also close to my house, their sandwiches and waffle fries are tasty, and my 3-year-old thinks the same. It weighs on my mind, believe me, but that triangulation of convenience, efficiency, and quality of food takes precedent once you become a parent. → Read More

Panda Express’s Sichuan Hot Chicken could stand to be a bit more Sichuan

I ordered a plate of Panda Express’s Sichuan Hot Chicken on the same day I received a preview copy of The Food of Sichuan, the forthcoming book from Fuchsia Dunlop (in my opinion the most important Chinese cookbook author in the English language). On first blush it’d be easy to acknowledge the dichotomy—accessible American-Chinese food, next to a treatise on perhaps China’s most thrilling… → Read More

Dill, baby, dill: The pickle sandwich is a thing of beauty

The internet: What a place! It is a fount of strange and wonderful ideas, from Cheddar Bay Biscuit-crusted fried chicken to queso using cream of chicken soup. It is here on the internet, about a month ago, that I saw a sandwich with dill pickles in place of bread. Ideas like this are typically good for a “like” or a retweet, nothing more, as many of these suggestions are more novel than… → Read More

Burger King’s Impossible Whopper changes the game

The Impossible Whopper has landed, and like John/Paul/George/Ringo stepping off their Pan Am flight onto the JFK airport tarmac, the impact may be bigger than you’d imagine. → Read More

The secret to my chili-garlic hot sauce is sizzling chicken fat

The way I make ginger-scallion sauce is the way my Chinese brethren have done so for decades: Pouring sizzling oil over the “dry” ingredients, briefly cooking it and helping achieve a smooth, paste-like texture. So when I took on a new cooking project this weekend—chili-garlic hot sauce, meant for poached chicken—I wondered what would happen if I took out peanut oil and substituted with rendered… → Read More

What if we blended a Beyond Burger... with beef?

This week, The Takeout staff was inspired by a comment from Otto42.5 in a story about who actually eats Beyond Meats/Impossible Burgers (it’s not vegans). That comment: → Read More

Let's settle the Doritos debate: Nacho Cheese vs. Cool Ranch

Doritos are arguably the most successful Mexican-American fusion product modern society has witnessed. One doesn’t immediately think Mexico, but of course, Doritos begins with the base product of fried tortilla chips. The American contribution comes via the dusting of flavored spice blend coating the exterior of each piece. → Read More

We tried the KFC Cheetos sandwich so now you'll have to

I’m no Malcolm Gladwell, but surely he could pithily coin a psychological term for that moment of realization when doubt turns to epiphany. It’s the light switch being flipped, the red phosphorous of the match igniting, the step over into the event horizon. You know, when your knee-jerk reaction is to think revulsion, but then you stew on it for a few, and at some point reach that moment when… → Read More

Grill your Romaine lettuce, ya fancy bastard

Romaine lettuce had a rough 2018 and now it’s looking to rehab its image. I’ve always felt bad that its reputation took such a public beating (the E.Coli-outbreak part was bad, too), because it was part of the first salad I truly enjoyed as a kid—Caesar salad. It was a salad that felt like it was served for royalty, with a luxuriously creamy dressing and savory hits of anchovies. → Read More

A chilaquiles private lesson with Rick Bayless

An e-mail arrived in my inbox a few weeks ago, asking if I was interested in taking a chilaquiles lesson with Rick. Chilaquiles, of course, being the comforting tortilla-in-broth cure-all of Mexican gastronomy, and Rick being Rick Bayless, the Chicago chef, Mexico evangelist, and sole reason that O’Hare Airport is tolerable. → Read More

Woman named Marijuana Pepsi now a doctor

Now that you’ve had sufficient time to guffaw at the headline, this story, it turns out, is actually an inspiring tale of not allowing labels to hold you back in life. → Read More

There are 2 must-get items from McDonald's new Worldwide Favorites menu

Having recently eaten through much of the menu at McDonald’s in Hong Kong, it made me realize McDonald’s was like music, film, or another form of pop culture—some of it exported from America worldwide, with the remaining filled with local stars and catered for local tastes. Like, Beyonce is a megastar in India, but so is Honey Singh. → Read More

Ed Sheeran now a condiment

Ed Sheeran, a man who’s in love with the shape of you, is also in love with ketchup. He loves ketchup the way you love mom, that is, he’s got a tattoo of the Heinz ketchup logo on his left arm. → Read More

’Nduja on pizza? Yes, ’nduja on pizza!

Recently during our weekly Takeout Draft, the topic centered on pizza toppings. I had the foresight and pie-topping acumen to choose ’nduja—in the third round, no less! → Read More

New Yorkers are making money by snitching on idling delivery trucks

Coming back from New York City over the weekend, I was flabbergasted by the people who navigate Manhattan by vehicle on a daily basis. How? Why? The ability to thread your car through traffic seemingly requires Miyagi-chopsticking-flies-precision. One thing exacerbating the congestion are the oversized vehicles that block the already-narrow Manhattan streets, which in addition to slowing your… → Read More