Perry will follow the influence of the Middle East to China and back again. The introduction of millstones from Iran made wheat flour and Iranian-style dumplings possible in China. Some dishes invented in what's now Uzbekistan spread west to the Middle East in the 9th century. And at some unknown date several centuries ago, Central Asian countries learned of the Indian chapatti. Later, a Central Asian pastry named chakchak appealed to the Manchus and is still made in China, called saqima. Try a chakchak dumpling sample at the lecture.
The lecture is free and will take place in the Grand Foyer. 900 Exposition Blvd., Los Angeles, (213) 763-3466, www.nhm.org.