A Toisanese Bowl of Joy

It was some sort of Chinese winter holiday yesterday and there’s a special dish that’s usually served to celebrate it according to my folks. My mum didn’t make it, but she is making it today and it hales from my dad’s village of Toison/Taishan.

The star of this soup bowl of joy are the handmade rice noodles/dumplings. They’re referred to as noodles, but they’re heartier – gnocchi-esque.

It’s a dish my mum learned to make when she came over to the states. Our neighborhood had a few families from my dad’s village and so they taught her.

The soup is made with pork, dried shrimp and winter melon with some napa cabbage.

Dinner can’t come soon enough tonite.

A Woman’s Place Is Running the Kitchen [via Digg]

A Woman’s Place Is Running the Kitchen [via Digg]

Barbara Lynch, left, and Kristen Kish in the kitchen of Menton in Boston. Credit Gillian Laub for The New York Times
Barbara Lynch, left, and Kristen Kish in the kitchen of Menton in Boston. Credit Gillian Laub for The New York Times

Lynch has taken a personal stance by providing mentorship to rising women. But what is needed, Lynch says, is a broader cultural shift. “It’s important for women to get on television,” she said at an industry panel this month. “Because that is the largest audience we have.” It is a means to a necessary end, and she’s all for it — just so long as she doesn’t have to do it herself. READ MORE

Grit, determination and fire.

[via NY Times by way of Digg]

“Sriracha, a Love Affair”

“Sriracha, a Love Affair”

Sriracha, Sriracha on everything!

This Foodbeast video is total foodp()rn:

The cock sauce has been the focus of cookbooks, clothes, has been jocked by Subway, and web-famous cartoonist The Oatmeal even satirically prototyped a Sriracha Beer Helmets. Let’s also not forget the potential health benefits of Sriracha documented earlier in 2012, which may include things like: making people happier, skinnier and generally more amazing. READ MORE

Who knew that the bottled chili sauce found in all pho houses would take on a life of its own? And initially I totally thought it was a Vietnamese invention until my Thai ex-pat friend schooled me on its origins.

Doesn’t really matter since it’s international now — even the office fridge has a communal bottle 😛

Process: Goat Cheese is Poo

Process: Goat Cheese is Poo

Mr. Lee asked me about yesterday’s I-hate-goat-cheese comic: “So, how did you do it? Did you do it all with the computer or did you draw it?”

I sketched out the goat with my trusty 3B pencil, took a photo of it, Dropbox‘d it (because I’m too lazy to use the scanner since I do all my work lying in bed), and then went over it in Illustrator with my Wacom pen and tablet (the itty bitty Bamboo model because it’s portable). From there, I worked everything out in Illustrator.
Now, I tend to inwardly cringe a little when people ask me if I did something via the computer or if I drew by hand. It makes it seem as though drawing with the computer requires no effort — that the computer magically draws everything out for you.
Sure, you can make it trace something out, but you can also use a lightbox and do the same thing by hand.
I look at Illustrator and my Wacom pen & tablet in the same way as breaking out acrylic paints, brushes, and canvas.
It’s a medium. It’s a tool. It is neither better nor worse.

Lucky Peach Magazine, Issue 5: Chinatown

Lucky Peach Magazine, Issue 5: Chinatown
It was a fun-filled weekend and I acquired a LOT of new material to work with. You hang out with a bunch of guys and you’re bound to get “inspired.” With that being said, the usual comic slated for today will be arriving tomorrow instead.
BUT, I do have an amazing find to share with you all — Lucky Peach magazine!
I tell you that it was fate that brought this magazine to me. Thanks to the Yume Wo Katare ramen line, Mr. Lee and I were given the chance to noodle around Porter Square Books, an indie bookshop I’d never visited before (what?!). I spotted the Chinatown cover and started leafing through the sucker. So, basically…

Lucky Peach is a quarterly journal of food and writing. Each issue focuses on a single theme, and explores that theme through essays, art, photography, and recipes.

This particular issue was all about Chinese food.
It’s got some seriously awesome articles and isn’t your typical food periodical — it’s fun and isn’t overly focused on recipes, entertaining, gadget reviews and/or how-to do something food-related. It’s more about the places, back-stories, and people behind the food. Those are the parts that interest me the most. Plus, I already know that I’m a shiyat cook — I generally just roast vegetables, make scrambled eggs, and re-heat things. That is my repertoire.
My favorite articles so far from the issue?
  • photo compilation of how chow mein looks around the world. Like, Mozambique serves chow mein? Really? Really. I love stuff like this. When Mr. Lee and I were in the Bahamas a few years back, we wanted to see what Bahamian Chinese fast food was like. FYI it sucked.
  • behind-the-scenes look into the Asian produce world — from the farmers to how it gets into the supermarkets and then sold.
  • a rant on walnut prawns — which, by the way, I <3 eating as filthy and as disgusting it may be prepared.
I can’t wait to read about other food in upcoming issues. At $12 a pop, it is a bit steep, but considering that I don’t subscribe to anything else, I’ll afford meself this small luxury.
Check it out if you can — it’s published by McSweeney’s, a publishing company based in San Francisco, CA.
PS. Does anyone else hate themselves after eating at Yume Wo Katare? I like my pork fat but jeezus kriste.