The Forgotten

I didn’t know going into this lesson that I would get to revisit one of my childhood favorite egg dishes. And that’s steamed eggs (khai toon in Thai). It was such a delicious and comforting dish that I still can’t believe that I rarely thought about it. The last time I ate such a dish must have been in a Japanese restaurant. They usually come in a teensy-weensy bowl, as if there’s only half an egg in there, perfectly silky and light. 

Bright and Saucy

The Kitchn’s Cooking School Lesson 13: Sauces I would love to learn to make the mother sauces like the bechamel and the hollandaise, but the weather’s been so warm and humid that I haven’t been in the mood for something rich. I’ve made mayonnaise and currently have a store-bought jar in my fridge. I’ve made…

Beer, Wine, and My Father

My father used to be a big beer drinker until one day—on his birthday, or maybe mine, or one of those days you get to make your wishes outloud—I asked him to stop drinking beer. And he did. He granted me my wish. Just like that, he quit beer. I was very young then, maybe…

From My Library: Vol. 6

As promised, I want to share with you a few passages from William Zinsser’s book On Writing Well about writing family history and memoir this week. The book’s subtitle for its 30th anniversary is The Classic Guide to Writing Nonfiction. And yet it’s such a moving and intimate read. I suppose that’s why I enjoyed reading it so much…

Perfection Found, Almost

The Kitchn’s Cooking School Lesson 5 Little by little, I’m getting back to my usual way. First work, then cooking, then exercising, then meditation, and now, finally, The Kitchn’s Cooking School. Where did we leave off? Ah, yes, the lesson on poultry. I’m just so glad that I’ve finally found the perfect way to cook…

Saturday Rambling

I probably should eat. It’s almost one in the afternoon here in Bangkok. Instead, I’ve fed myself with water and Gabrielle Hamilton’s “Rome” and “Hunger” episodes in The Mind of a Chef. My stomach was not rumbling, but my mouth watered at the sight of the Prune chef-and-owner putting sardines on slices of avocado and dressing…

From My Library: Vol. 4

My vacation in Germany is drawing to a close. Tomorrow, Monday, is my last full day here. All the free time on this trip means I have been able to focus on reading William Zinsser’s On Writing Well. And my love for the book is steadily deepening. I want to share a few passages from the…

Mastering the Omelette

The Kitchn’s Cooking School Lesson 4 I’m veering off this lesson in the Cooking School a bit. The omelette is not part of the homework, but it’s something I’ve always wanted to master. It is the dish that French kitchens use to test a new cook after all. And many a successful chefs achieve their…

How I Cook: Year 2

Since I started this blog, I’ve been cooking not only more frequently, but I believe my cooking has changed in many ways. When I wrote the first How I Cook post, I wanted to tell the readers about my food and cooking background. More than that, I wanted to make it clear that this food…

One Year Today

Yes, Eat, Read, Record is one year old today. There were a few moments in between where I thought maybe it wouldn’t even last a year, but those moments usually lasted less than a minute. If anything, in the past year, I spent most of the time excitedly planning ahead—way ahead—and feeling guilty about not…

An Easy Win

Recipes 3 and 3.1: Roasted Mushrooms on Toast and Mushroom Spaghetti      
Victories 3 and 3.1: Roasting mushrooms (simple as that) and discovering that mushrooms can go great with pasta without any sauce

That Little Known Thing Called Vegetable

I’m terrible with names, especially names of vegetables. It doesn’t help that I usually deal with at least two languages and culinary cultures when it comes to food. Coriander, parsley, and cilantro (phak chi, phak chi farang, and phak chi in Thai respectively) always force me to consult the dictionary or Google. The allium family…

The Works at Home

Like many women of my generation, I grew up thinking that housework was not work, not for mothers in any case. I remember that in kindergarten or primary school, whenever the question of my parents’ professions came up, I always knew what my father’s job was. When it came to my mother’s, I asked our maids about it the first time I encountered the question in a homework assignment. They told me, “maebaan,” literally mother house, or housewife in Thai

Grub, Gab, and Grind

I like solitude in high doses; friendship to be constant, stable, and deep; social outings chatty, intimate, and in moderate amounts; food comforting, occasionally inventive, in generous amounts, and shared with friends. The only things I miss about having an office job are the lunches and the after-work drinks with colleagues and friends, where we…

A Sense of Structure

Almost two weeks into 2017 and I’m still in the process of lugging my mind, rhythm, and spirit back to work. Thankfully, I’ve found a few things that have given me a sense of structure.

Looking Back, Looking Ahead

I got the idea to do the first list from the 69th issue of Australian magazine Frankie, in which they asked five artists and writers to share 20 things they did the previous year. I think it’s such a wonderfully simple way to record your year. It also gives you a chance to look back…

My Father’s Salad Dressing

My father didn’t grow up cooking. And this salad dressing is his one and only culinary legacy. His one and only recipe. It has been in our family for almost three decades. And since his death almost eight years ago, it’s become a reminder not only of the level of his culinary skills, but also…

How I Cook

Before we go any further, I think you should know how I cook, where I am at in my cooking, and how I grew up cooking, or not cooking. So here we go… 1. I am not a good cook. Yet. But I’m working toward becoming a great home cook, not necessarily MasterChef-level great, because…

Long Way Down

My family used to drive everywhere like there were no other modes of transportation. When my siblings and I went to boarding school in Quebec, Canada, we stuffed the back of our car with suitcases and drove up from our home in Maryland semester after semester. When I went to college in Boston, we drove….

Food Don’t Weigh Me Down

I’m excited. That always comes with being inspired. And it’s a good feeling to have when you’re starting a new project. Definitely way better than anxious, which is my default mode. But before we go any further, I must credit my inspiration for this blog: Grand Forks: A History of American Dining in 128 Reviews…