You Can Find Fortune Cookies Everywhere, Except China

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Though a staple of Americanized Chinese restaurants, the fortune cookie is definitely not part of the traditional Chinese menu. In fact, this dessert likely has Japanese origins. An 1878 Japanese block print showed a man using the same grills used in Kyoto to make fortune cookies today (there is a local tradition there of making sujiura senbei, or "fortune crackers"). The cookie was popularized in the United States, and is often credited with being invented there.