Week #1.2: Lack and Compensation

One of the things I am constantly kicking myself for is the fact that I don’t know how to cook the food my parents make. Y’know, food of the Motherland. Honest-to-goodness, no-lie, the traditional Vietnamese and Chinese dishes (and I’ll be honest, sometimes their lines are too blurred for me to tell where one ends and one begins, but maybe that doesn’t matter because it’s the influences of one upon the other that makes it great) that I took for granted when I’m at home. I’m talking the sweet and pungent and aromatic and light and subtle and exotic flavors of fish sauce, soy sauce, garlic-chili pepper paste, ginger, sesame…and that’s not even a fraction of it.

I think it explains the reason why I don’t cook Asian myself very often– I can’t do it like momma. So I don’t even try, and I just dance and flit around every other cuisine that would never be seen at home.

But this week, I think miss some of those flavors. It’s a far cry from the traditional foods, but maybe I’m just looking for something that will get me through until the next time. So this week, with some tofu left in the fridge, I made a stir fry of this, but instead of wrapping it up in lettuce, I opted for some kale. And then I found raw kale to be a little intense, so I wilted it for a little bit before adding it to the stir fry. Oh, and since I had some old leftover ground beef (previously purposed to fill dumplings), I added that in, too.

Because I am impatient and an idiot, it turned out a little more watery than expected, but that’s okay. The taste was still great (smelled great as it cooked, too), and there’s nothing a little Sriracha can’t save.

Photo Jun 22, 3 22 08 PM


Along with the theme, I also tried to make curried beef dumplings from here, but the flavors just weren’t there– kind of muted, actually. I think it might be because I subbed out the soy for tamari sauce, and it being by first time with it, I wasn’t sure exactly how it’d taste. In any case, I only made a few, and froze the rest of the filling to play with for another day.

And of course, for dessert/breakfast, paleo banana bread. I’ve been most impressed with this recipe. I haven’t really done much paleo baking, but out of what I have tried, I liked this one enough to try again.

Photo Jun 22, 3 21 57 PM

We’ll see how long this food lasts me– I still even have leftover zucchini lasagna from last week(!).


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