Here's a description of Serve the People from the book's official blurb:
"As a freelance journalist and food writer living in Beijing, Jen Lin-Liu already had a ringside seat for ’s exploding food scene. When she decided to enroll in a local cooking school – held in an unheated classroom with nary a measuring cup in sight – she jumped into the ring herself. In Serve the People, Lin-Liu gives a memorable and mouthwatering cook’s tour of today’s China Chinaas she progresses from cooking student to noodle-stall and dumpling-house apprentice to intern at a chic restaurant. The characters she meets along the way include poor young men and women streaming in from the countryside in search of a “rice bowl” (living wage), a burgeoning urban middle class hungry for luxury after decades of turmoil and privation, and the mentors who take her in hand in the kitchen and beyond." Shanghai
The "chic Shanghai restaurant" referred to is Jereme Leung's Whampoa Club, where Jen spent much of her time wrapping xiaolong bao. Remind me to invite her to my home!