I a single guy and not necessarily a great cook. I do enjoy cooking, but cooking for one person can be a challenge at times. Also, I’m acutely aware of wasting food, so oftentimes I wind up buying frozen foods. That isn’t exactly very healthy, but it is convenient. What I’ve noticed the past few years is that places like Trader Joe’s, Costco and even supermarkets like Safeway, will carry a lot of frozen Chinese, […] Continue »
I was watching an 2017 NBA Playoffs game when I saw this Jimmy John’s TV commercial. To be honest, I had never heard of Jimmy John’s before I saw this commercial – but their sandwiches, from what I could see – reminded me of Jersey Mike’s. Apparently, there are a few Jimmy John’s in San Francisco, but certainly not that pervasive (like Subway) and none in Silicon Valley. Ran Wei is the actress in the commercial […] Continue »
Back in March of this year, I had blogged about Seattle’s 3rd Din Tai Fung restaurant opening in downtown Seattle. Well, the 4th one is now open at Westfield Southcenter, as described here: “The long-awaited arrival of Din Tai Fung’s Southcenter outpost came to an end on Friday at 6 p.m., when the ribbon was cut on the fourth Seattle-area restaurant for the international dumpling chain. Din Tai Fung originated in Taiwan and has expanded […] Continue »
Of the many areas where Asian Americans affect American life, the last place I expected to see an influence is with jerky. Jerky has never been a favorite of mine (it’s okay), so I was surprised to read that Asian Americans are driving up the popularity of jerky and other meat snacks. In the Nielsen Homescan report that is the source of that article, Nielsen claims that meat snacks are now the biggest snack spend […] Continue »
While watching the local evening news recently, I came across this new Panda Express commercial promoting their latest dish, Five Flavor Shrimp: “Five quality ingredients. Five delicious flavors. Experience the moment when premium shrimp, green beans, red bell pepper and white onion come together in our five flavor sauce in our new TV spot” I’m a big fan of shrimp, so that definitely caught my eye – especially since the dish looked simple enough for […] Continue »
As I had blogged back in January 2016, Din Tai Fung had announced that they were opening a FOURTH restaurant in the Greater Seattle region – even before opening the first in the Bay Area – which did eventually happen (back in May 2016). Well, the third Seattle Din Tai Fung is now open: “The waiting is over — except for in the giant lines about to form at Pacific Place for the latest local outlet […] Continue »
One of the (few) benefits of having teenagers is getting a glimpse of what youth culture is like these days. Given that I myself am decades removed from that time period, I like to compare what I see and hear from them to how it was when I was young. Since my kids and I all grew up in communities full of Asian Americans (unlike John), I have some perspective on how Asian American youth […] Continue »
Looks like Din Tai Fung is in expansion mode again, with reports in late January that the restaurant chain will be expanding into San Diego: “Joining previously announced newcomers, including big-time national burger outfit Shake Shack and Javier’s and The Winery from Orange County, is world-renowned dumpling house Din Tai Fung. Founded in Taiwan, with locations now spanning the globe, the crowd-drawing eatery is known for its delicate, soup-filled steamed dumplings.” Now the Westfield UTC mall […] Continue »
Last year, actor & activist George Takei was in a Taco Bell Super Bowl commercial. And in case you didn’t see the greatest Super Bowl comeback in NFL history, there were also commercials. And Takei appeared again in a Super Bowl commercial this year, but this time around, for Pizza Hut. Takei uses his signature phrase, “Oh My” to great humor. I’m not sure if I saw any other Asian Americans in the other Super […] Continue »
Chow Chop Suey: Food and the Chinese American Journey joins the circle of books traversing the history of Chinese food in the United States, specifically the peculiar beast that is chop suey. Mendelson takes a historical journey into its origins, as a food consciously produced for a white audience during a time of Exclusion, and into the expansion of Chinese food in the United States beyond that. Her volume joins a growing bookshelf, including Jennifer […] Continue »
Aubergine, a new play written by Julia Cho, opens today at Playwrights Horizons in New York City. Running through October 2, it’s an emotional story about family, death, and food. Ray’s father is home on hospice with his son Ray, a first-generation Korean American chef, who is struggling with how to manage and how to cope. To notify his father’s brother, he calls on his ex-girlfriend Cornelia to tell him in Korean. When his uncle unexpectedly shows up with a soup recipe, […] Continue »
Padma Lakshmi’s memoir, Love, Loss, and What We Ate is an intimate look at family, growing, grief, and eating through life’s ups and downs. Best known for her role as host on Top Chef, Lakshmi takes us from childhood to the present in vivid detail with humor, honesty, and self-reflection. She is fully willing to unveil her flaws, capitalizing on the gift of hindsight. Lakshmi ably guides us through her triumphs and travails. She is unafraid to talk […] Continue »
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