Standing at the intersection of scholarship on Dallas history, Asian American Studies, and Food Studies, the “Digging In” project examines the ways that restaurants and food markets shaped the social, economic, and political development of Asian communities in Dallas. Documenting the stories of immigrant entrepreneurs through oral history, archival research, and content analysis of restaurant reviews, this study explores the interaction between food, culture, and class in the Asian immigrant communities of Dallas. This project examines how the growth of the Asian community coincided with the rise of "foodie" culture in Dallas to create unique opportunities for economic and social engagement between and among different Asian immigrant groups as well with the larger Dallas community

The project was funded by an ACLS/Mellon Community College Faculty Fellowship. Interviews from “Digging In: How Food, Culture, and Class Shape the Story of Asian Dallas” were conducted by Dr. Betsy Brody primarily in 2021 and 2022. All interviews from this project will be archived at Baylor University’s Institute for Oral History. Also, as part of this project, many narrators donated photos, menus, and other items to the Dallas Public Library’s History and Archives Division. Selections from the interviews, as well as narrators’ portraits, shot by Thanin Viriyaki, are also featured on the Digital Wall at the Dallas Public Library’s J. Erik Jonsson Central Library.