American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A Chinese-American dish consisting of small pieces of meat or chicken cooked with bean sprouts and other vegetables and served with rice.
- n. Informal A miscellany: "His coterie of execs were up to their pin stripes in a chop suey of deals” ( TV Guide).
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A mixed dish served in Chinese restaurants in New York and elsewhere, as a Chinese dish (but apparently not known in China), consisting of some kind of meat (chicken, pork. beef), with vegetables (celery, onions, green bean sprouts, mushrooms, green peppers, etc.), cut small, seasoned, and cooked.
- n. US A stir-fried vegetable dish, served with pieces of beef or pork in a semi-thick sauce, and often soy sauce.
- n. Steamed bean sprouts served in a semi-thick sauce, and mixed with a choice of meat and/or vegetables.
GNU Webster's 1913
- United States A mélange served in Chinese restaurants to be eaten with rice, noodles, etc. It consists typically of bean sprouts, onions, mushrooms, etc., and sliced meats, fried and flavored with sesame oil.
- n. meat or fish stir-fried with vegetables (e.g., celery, onions, peppers or bean sprouts) seasoned with ginger and garlic and soy sauce; served with rice; created in the United States and frequently served in Chinese restaurants there
- From Cantonese 雜碎 (zaap6 seoi3, "mixed and broken"). (Wiktionary)
- Chinese (Cantonese) tsaāpsuì, miscellaneous bits, equivalent to Chinese (Mandarin) zá, mixed + Chinese (Mandarin) suì, to break up, pieces. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“And Turner Meeks himself, holder of the Va Va Voom Girl’s real true love, was getting fat, fat, fatter on moo shu duck, sweet and sour pork, shrimp chop suey and beef kowloon — a shitload of condemned man’s last meals.”
“The chop suey house is long gone, but the vintage neon sign remains: Wo Fat Chop Sui.”
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