Asian Cuisines

Mandarin Beef Stir Fry

January 2, 2018

So, hi. It’s a new year. The holidays are behind us. However you spent the past week, we can all heave a sigh of relief: the fuss is over until next December. You’re wondering about the stir-fry. Even as we vaccuum up those pesky Evergreen needles, here I am, fussing…

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Beef Rendang

November 14, 2017

Rendang daging sapi, or beef rendang, is a specialty of West Sumatra. Rendangs are dry curries, not loose affairs you pour over noodles or rice. While beef rendang begins as wet curries do, with copious amounts of coconut milk, it diverges in cooking method. Prepared in a wide, shallow pan instead of a…

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Pork Rib Curry

October 18, 2017

I apologize for the quiet around here. We live about thirty miles south of Santa Rosa, California. As I write, firefighters are slowly gaining control over the fires. People are returning to their homes, or what’s left of them. Berkeley Fire Engine Six was called to help fight the fires…

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This post was written last week, before events in Las Vegas or Tom Petty’s untimely death. Much as I’d like to add some sensitively worded writing about either event, words fail me. Thank you for reading. — Last week found me at the used bookstore, where I found the companion…

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Thai Beef with Rice Noodles

September 20, 2017

Poke around the internet and you’ll find guay teow neua sab interpreted any number of ways. The noodles are invariably rice, but the meat can range from braising cuts to ground beef. Some dishes are wet enough to qualify as soups. Others are dry enough to be eaten with forks. However you…

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Occasionally you pick up a cookbook at random. You park it on your “to read” shelf with every intention of getting around to it. Meanwhile, various disasters transpire: dental work, feline illness, neighbor drama, spousal sickness, inept national leadership, world mayhem. Finally you open the cookbook. There, glimmering, is the…

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Bitter Melon Curry

August 27, 2017

Note: The full impact of Hurricane Harvey was reaching the news after I posted. To help those affected in Texas, from the New York Times: Donations to the Red Cross for those affected by Harvey can be made online, or text HARVEY to 90999. Donations to the Salvation Army can be made online. Catholic Charities is accepting donations online,…

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Recent events have left me careering between rage and despair. Occasionally there’s a comparatively calm moment of depression, a lull in the mental action, before some tidbit of horrible news sends me bouncing off the walls again. Writing is nearly impossible. How do you sit down and write: “Today I…

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Chinese Takeout Noodles

July 27, 2017

Breezy little blog posts are increasingly impossible. This week gave us Chester Bennington’s death, the migrant tragedy in the Texas Walmart lot, Venezuela, Yemen, and Syria. Atop all this, a gibbering idiot is running amok in the White House. In this context, Chinese Takeout Noodles are beyond trivial. Then again,…

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Now, some of you read fermented tofu and freaked out. Don’t lie. Perhaps you’re thinking of that famously stinky stuff considered a Chinese delicacy, tofu that evokes Vincent Price, in another context, intoning about the funk of 40,000 thousand years. Am I right? The IK, she’s here to ease your…

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