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Secrets from My Vietnamese Kitchen

Secrets from My Vietnamese Kitchen

Simple Recipes from My Many Mothers
edition:Hardcover
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Excerpt

From the Introduction

The moment you step inside a Vietnamese house, you are bombarded with variations on a single greeting: “Have you eaten?” “What would you like to eat?” “Come and eat.” “Just one little bite.” “The chicken I cooked is still hot.” “Here, try my cream puffs.”

We are not in the habit of verbalizing our joys, or even less, our affection. We use food as a tool for expressing our emotions. My parents don’t say, “We’ve missed you,” but rather, “We’ve made some spring rolls,” knowing that I love to eat them anytime, anywhere. Similarly, when I’m traveling abroad on a book tour, they will report that my sons had three helpings of everything, as a way to reassure me. On our visits to my grandmother in New York, my mother would stuff the trunk with her own mother’s favorite dishes. My father would laugh at her, but he still flies to Washington, D.C., and loads Vietnamese dishes into the trunk of the car that will take him to my uncle’s house in a remote part of Pennsylvania. That ninety-two-year-old uncle is my father’s older brother, who fed and housed him during my father’s time at university. My father considers him a father figure, and he tries to express his gratitude through the best sausage, the best lemongrass beef stew, the best steamed pancakes, the best sticky rice cake, and the best dried shrimp to be found in the Vietnamese markets.

In the refugee camps, my mother and Aunts 6 and 8 would do their best to transform the fish rations we’d receive six days out of seven in an effort to bring a semblance of normality to mealtimes. One day my mother was able to make a thin dough for dumplings. I remember very clearly how she was sitting on the ground with the cover of the barrel that we used as a water tank. She rolled out her dough on that rusty metal plate, which here and there still bore spots of its original yellow paint. The meal that followed was almost beside the point—we were just thrilled to see her cooking something other than rice and fish. It was a moment of togetherness, of celebration.

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Quintessential Filipino Cooking

75 Authentic and Classic Recipes of the Philippines
edition:Paperback
tagged : asian
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East Meets West

East Meets West

Traditional and Contemporary Asian Dishes from Acclaimed Vancouver Restaurants
edition:eBook
also available: Paperback
tagged : asian, pacific rim
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Everyday Exotic

Everyday Exotic

A Healthier Approach to Snacks and Finger Foods
edition:eBook
tagged : asian
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Excerpt

The notion behind the Exotic (Obedient) Ingredient is that the ingredient that was once out of reach becomes obedient once you learn how to master it. The ingredient intimidation melts away as you discover how to shop for it, what it looks like, where to find it, and finally how to cook it several ways. In a mere 30 minutes, something that was once beyond your approach is now readily embraced and subordinate. The Obedient Ingredient was born, not to mention that the two words rhyme and I’m a rapper. Sometimes it’s just that simple.

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Everyday Exotic: The Cookbook
Excerpt

The notion behind the Exotic (Obedient) Ingredient is that the ingredient that was once out of reach becomes obedient once you learn how to master it. The ingredient intimidation melts away as you discover how to shop for it, what it looks like, where to find it, and finally how to cook it several ways. In a mere 30 minutes, something that was once beyond your approach is now readily embraced and subordinate. The Obedient Ingredient was born, not to mention that the two words rhyme and I'm a rapper. Sometimes it's just that simple.

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