Why Do I Like Ramen So Much?

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I’ve been contemplating why I like ramen so much…

My husband’s theory is that people love certain foods because of nostalgia; when they eat a particular food, it brings back happy or fond memories. For example, he and my sis in law reminisce about Black Forest Cake, but not just any Black Forest cake, but Black Forest Cake purchased from Sam’s Club. “Whenever we had a birthday, that’s where our family got our cake, and it always stood out to me as the best. That is my cake standard.”

I don’t have that kind of history with ramen; I tried my first bowl of “authentic” Japanese ramen after I graduated from college, married, moved to a new city. Honestly, the first time I tried it, I wasn’t even that impressed.

Gradually, my tastes began to change. The meaty but creamy broth, the chewy noodles, the half boiled egg… ramen had become one of the foods I always crave.

But why?
Continue reading

I Miss Sweet Potatoes

Reaching over, the parents handed steaming hot, half peeled sweet potatoes to their children. One for each.  Their kids, actually, growing teenagers, grabbed the sweet potatoes with huge smiles and bit into them, steam hitting their faces.

“Wah! I really miss sweet potatoes!” I declared, watching that TV scene. It reminded me so much of my family. “Did you ever eat sweet potatoes with your parents growing up?” I nudged my husband.

“Huh? No,” he continued reading. He didn’t bother looking up from his book, sitting beside me as I watched a Kdrama.

“Ahhh… but I love sweet potatoes,” I sighed.

Growing up, Continue reading

We Don’t Say “I Love You”

IMG_7560Some nights waves of nostalgia hit me.  I’ve been thinking about food and the meaning of food quite a bit lately, and it reminded me of an old blog post I wrote, 4 years ago…
March 15, 2012

Scooping out the rice from the rice cooker, the fresh jasmine aroma overwhelmed me with memories of my family…

~ ~ ~

“What did you eat today, koun (daughter)?” Mak asked over the phone.   Continue reading

Groceries and Grief

Two bags of egg noodles, frozen shrimp, and a head of garlic.

At the local Asian market, my feet tapped impatiently. It was getting late, and I still needed to cook.

While the cashier rang up my items, I noticed some fliers by the register. One flier, printed in black and white, caught my eye.

I squinted to focus on a woman’s photo, printed at the top.

Those sad eyes…

where had I seen her before? Continue reading

Music from the Mortar

Clunk clunk clunk.  The sharp sound of a clay pestle striking against the mortar startled me.

Nearly every Saturday morning, the sounds of my parents laboring in the kitchen awoke me from my slumber. Still in bed, I wondered, what were Mak and Ba cooking today? Continue reading

Versatile Blogger Award / Dona Nobis Pacem

Last week’s tumultuous weather really dragged me down… (winter storm from last week? watch for the upcoming blog post on it!) Is there such thing as emotional jet lag? Cuz since I returned from Asia, I have been jumping through one hurdle after another…

So I interrupt all this funk to share my excitement in being nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award! I’m a former xangan for over a decade so certainly not new to the blogging community.. but after migrating to WP I definitely felt like a small fish in a giant pond. This award reminds me that perhaps we are more connected than we think.. =)

A big thank you to HongKongFong for the nomination. She’s a talented photographer and blogger who captures the beauty in the everyday –  in her life and all the colors, cultures, and cuisines that compose Hong Kong. (She’s also a fellow oboist! YEA oboes!)

7 random things about myself… Continue reading

你好 Nei hou, from Hong Kong!

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one of my fav meals to have in HK

Tonight, we slurped delicious won ton noodles from a dai pai dong, savored real Chinese desserts like sesame soup, and walked through countless shops for our favorite snacks.

With each day, I am mesmerized at the complete mesh of cultures, like robust tea so beautifully paired with English milk, to form the perfect combination of lai cha.  Or the trams and trolleys traveling down the streets, carrying loads of Chinese passengers to and fro.  Or the old Eastern medicine herb shops nestled between glitzy department stores and boutiques.

It is a wonder, a sight to smell, to taste, and to explore.

Thus, please pardon the lack of updates on the blog for the time being, as I am currently traveling abroad.  =)

But I’ll have plenty more adventures (and nursing stories) (aaanndddd kit kat reviews, i hope!) to update you with upon my return.

~ ~ ~

P.S.

Anyone have any recommendation on MUST SEE’s/ MUST EAT’s  in Hong Kong?

And any must see’s in Tokyo? Going there for a quick layover and have 1-2 days to explore. Go! =D

the Kit Kat Conquest

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a hint of what’s to come…

to taste every imaginable Kit Kat flavor ever made! 

It all started after a trip to Asia.

A few years ago, in Hong Kong, I stumbled upon an intriguing Kit Kat Flavor: Passion Fruit Raspberry. Curious, I picked up a box and saved one for my friend, Hsiao.  Coincidentally, Hsiao traveled to Japan that same month.  We exchanged our souvenirs upon her return, and unknowingly surprised one another with different flavored Kit Kats.  Soon, our good friend Esther joined our Kit Kat conquest, sharing with us her Sakura Green Tea Kit Kats.

We were delighted to learn that Nestle Japan creates Kit Kat in a dizzying assortment of the most interesting, bizarre flavors. Continue reading