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Conversation with Tung Nguyen and Kathy Manning, authors of Mango and Peppercorns: A Memoir of Food, an Unlikely Family, and the American Dream

Tuesday, April 26, 2022 @ 6:30 pm

Books & Books

265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables, United States

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Through powerful narrative, archival imagery, and 20 Vietnamese recipes that mirror their story, Mango & Peppercorns: A Memoir of Food, an Unlikely Family, and the American Dream, is a unique contribution to culinary literature by life-long collaborators Tung Nguyen and Kathy Manning. Although they come from different worlds, together they created magic in their award-winning Miami Vietnamese restaurant Hy Vong. Kathy ran the front of the house while Tung created masterful dishes in the kitchen.  Mango and Peppercorns is the story of Tung’s journey to America and the friendship with Kathy that would change her life. Lyn Nguyen, Tung’s daughter, will moderate the conversation between her mother, Tung Nguyen and Kathy Manning. Samplings of their signature spring rolls will be offered.

Raffle: Mango and Peppercorn Gift Basket.
Each attendee will receive one raffle ticket for a chance to win a curated gift basket that includes many of the ingredients to make Hy Vong’s signature spring rolls, as well as assorted sweets, and a copy of Mango and Peppercorns: A Memoir of Food, an Unlikely Family, and the American Dream.

This event is part of Miami Book Fair’s 2022 Big Read program.


Kathy Manning
Kathy is a native of the American Midwest and is co-owner with Tung Nguyen of Hy Vong Restaurant in Miami. As a young graduate student in the mid-1970s, she resettled Vietnamese refugees with the support of Lutheran World Relief. Kathy holds a degree in sociology from Barry University, and a degree in Mathematics from the University of Miami. She was a math teacher for three years but found greater purpose in celebrating Tung Nguyen’s food, running Hy Vong Restaurant and learning from people of different backgrounds. Kathy has traveled to Vietnam on five occasions. In 1994 she was the first American that the Vietnamese government allowed to stay within the countryside in Dien Ban, Quang Nam Vietnam (Tung’s home province).

Tung Nguyen
Tung’s grandmother taught her how to cook from childhood. In her twenties, she took her skills from the country to the city and made and sold street food in Saigon. With the fall of Saigon in 1975 and recognizing that her life was in danger, Tung jumped onto a refugee boat bound for America. Tung didn’t speak English, arrived with nothing, and soon realized that she was pregnant. Before her long trip from Vietnam to the US, she had never traveled anywhere that her feet could not carry her. Upon arrival in the US, Tung met Kathy and four years later they opened Hy Vong.

Lyn Nguyen
Phuong Lien (Lyn) was born in Miami not long after her mother arrived in the US. Lyn grew up helping in the restaurant until she left home for college. She holds a Bachelor of Science from Harvard University and an MBA from Cornell University. She is currently the CEO of Liquid Analytics.



Tuesday, April 26, 2022
6:30 pm
Event Category:


All Year


Books & Books
265 Aragon Ave., Coral Gables, United States
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