THE ASIAN CONFUSION 



THE REAL TRUTH ABOUT CHINESE FOOD

  Chinese Buffets, King Crab And Shrimp”


The New World Order   —  Asian Con-Fusion  —  Our world is shrinking and we are a country of many people, ethnicities and religious beliefs and it does in a sense boil down to two things.  Our commonality in life centers on food and music.  I tell things that are true, I am a big fan of dishes from around the world, my favorite mentor, hours of TV envy Chefs Anthony Bordain and Andrew Zimmern and where they traveled.  

I am not here to bash buffets, but trends are changing and many younger intelligent people look more carefully at what they eat.   Buffets took the heaviest toll during this pandemic and many so call Chinese buffets are just conglomerate dishes thrown together and there is the problem.  I call these place Asian Con-Fusion  —

Many poorly run buffets were shut down during the pandemic and deserved it.  We found problems with them before the pandemic.    If you eat at six or seven, when was that steam tray cooked  — three, four, hours or yesterday?  Nothing gets thrown out but reused chilled and mixed with fresh, reheated for lunch menu in many cases.   It’s called “ marrying”   in the industry — 

When I went on my journey to discover,  “ What else is out there to eat”  and add to my culinary skills and knowledge, much of it driven ( well courtesy of  Military.GOV who sailed or flew me there) westbound toward ASIA and brought to the US as foods supposedly typically called Chinese Food.  Not what I saw there, but what was created here.

Today there are fewer Chinese style higher sit-downs, street type vendors, mobile or small open eateries, specializing in one particular dish and more buffets, and that brought us to the “ Asian Fusion” .


ASIAN CON-FUSION —  As we assimilated more refugees from LAOS, Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia, their dishes added to some basic Chinese dishes like Egg and Spring Rolls, the usual soups,  and lots of Chicken  — Many of those still living in the Orient came from China but settled in the aforementioned countries.   Food and processes are similar with small differences.  Fusion put the spin on things.

Few standalone Chinese full service restaurants exist today in my area, luckily my favorite Oriental habitat in Tampa Bay is ZOM HEE and on Park Blvd,  going west just past Starkey Rd.  ( about 100 yds on the right ) in Seminole Florida. The owners,  three generations, thirty-five plus years I have been going there and they maintain their standards. I know Kenny, his Dad and even the kids help on weekends.  It’s  was a seven day operation and finally after forty years 7/29/2021 Dad they we are taking Tuesday’s off.  Tuesday is the usual slowest day in the restaurant business.

He’s always busy, the foods great, consistent,  bountiful and fresh, old school.   Dad rules the kitchen and has for forty years.  And it’s kept clean.  Not on the violations list of the food police   The decor shows it’s traditional age, old school, and it’s nostalgic looking like places I ate in forty-five years ago. 

I think thats what I like about it — not that it’s the same in Hong Kong,  A different world.  You might not favor the locals food in China —  I’ll let someone else tell you about some unique things they serve.  But most of the rumors about dogs and horses are just that,  rumors.  

Countries of origin create a problem as those Cultures formulated what winds up on your plate and we all hope that rules and regulations put in place here in Florida by the Agricultural Department and county inspectors are followed to the letter and there are no exceptions because of health, ignorance, indifference or financial digressions and at the buffets, they don’t seem to remember the rules — We do not go there anymore to any of them.


MY OWN ASIAN CONFUSION —  

🔘  I apologize if I offend you, but I avoid and usually do not eat at Chinese, Pseudo Asian Confusion buffets — or many so-called American buffets by choice and my reasoning is sound. It involves food handling and deceitful practices. Again what goes on behind the closed doors of the kitchen.  There is little difference from the closed doors of the Politicians or the fake TV Theologians.  Unless, you work in the industry you have no idea. 

🔘  They are for distinct groups of people who love choice, they are tourists, or lazy cooks, too much company staying over, and something we noticed on our last survey at a Golden Corral three or four out of five in a group qualified as extreme obesity. And for those who set records in weight, people who free-styled and love it by the pound, they felt redeemed, deemed dinner a bargain, a bargain heading for a heart attack especially with all the salt and preservatives in the food.

🔘  I'm semi skilled in far east cooking and  have a real Oriental Market here I trust it it will be a new experience for some and the techniques of true Oriental Cuisine are not that hard —   Understand, most of whats served in the buffets are not Chinese and not up to the standards of better places. Sushi is Japanese, Kim-Chi is Korean, Brown Rice is not Chinese, those Crab legs are seconds and discards, you don’t know how old the Mussels or frozen shrimp are. Most important is how old is the food in those trays — They throw nothing out — 

🔘  And one other thing buffet people play with the food in those trays — They sift, they cross-contaminate - as many who come from other parts of the world buy from open air markets and live food — they touch everything —With COVID AND MonkeyPox now, like on the shark tank,  I’m Out!  

🔘  Larger chains of hotels at resorts in Vegas, or Atlantic City where the management  of the food services are also the house chefs is another story.  In Vegas there are several places I have no problem with their food because I am in the hotel and can see when it is being prepped and on display cooked properly.  And they have someone at the station watching over — 

🔘  Pinellas County Florida  In this section  I believe all six of those Chinese Buffets in my county and joining counties alone failed the Food Police tests.  People are being more cautious.            See   data.tallahassee.com Two of the largest buffets held on for years, beyond belief and finally got closed I predicted it — But they soon opened up under a Brother-In-Law same scam, same dirt, new name —  I bear witness to that fact, I have seen those discrepancies and the stale food they put out. 
What was OK back home does not work here —  Four of the buffets got nailed for Human Trafficking, Some of the management failed to realize people in this country have rights.  Even immigrants or students. A huge task force from Clearwater and Tampa got on their case and several went to jail, fines and closures.  SEE TRAFFICKING


POINTS OF LIGHT :   

🔘  I tried all of the places listed  on my webpage for the writeup that normal food critics do.  It went downhill from there.   They deserved to be fined, temporarily closed and for three of them forever.   What bothered me the most was attitude, seeing ungloved food being handled and some of the bathrooms not exactly monitored and filthy would drive me up a wall. Those same bathrooms were used by the help handling your food.  And in some areas that too is a violation.

🔘  And thats not taken into consideration if the food had survived three days of heated-chiller-heated again-chiller-heated.  We call that reconstituted leftovers.    Over 40,000 Chinese style buffet restaurants are in strip malls or occupying real estate along crowded boulevards, more common than McDonalds, Burger King, and Kentucky Fried Chicken combined.  Not anymore.

🔘  Little did we know that dairy products are seldom used in Chinese food, few dairies exit in China and that most of the take-out dishes she grew up eating can’t even be found in the mainland.   “People in China don’t eat fried rice.  The bulk of these dishes were created by accident. 

Chop suey, for example, was invented in the nineteenth century by San Francisco chefs who threw a bunch of ingredients into a pan and unintentionally started a craze. It’s a money maker, rich, rice is cheap and filling.  Many of these dishes were created using available ingredients at the time because chefs didn’t have much else at their disposal. 

The substitutions occurred mostly in the greens department: broccoli was swapped for kailan; carrots, peas, and white button mushrooms were put in place of mustard greens or shiitakes.

Americans lean toward white meat, whereas Chinese are more partial to dark which has more flavor… Good chefs cook with thigh meat for that reason, the meat had a better blood supply…   Bones don’t make a frequent appearance on the American-Chinese menus. “Americans don’t like bones”  — 

🔘  Fortune cookies are Japanese,”   not Chineses and are based on a Japanese confection called “tsujiura senbei”.   For a buffet to work you will see a host of American dishes added tot he menu for those who find what they see not appealing.

Sushi and Sashimi are not Chinese they are Japanese  —  Rice with various and quite attractive partners formed in appealing one bite, pieces.  At most buffets I can tell you the selection is basic almost all of the buffets  copy each other and know which selections are popular but not expensive.  You will see a difference when you attend a $100-150 dollar  Omakase master chef  Sushi - Sashimi personal dinner.

Kim Chi is a Korean Vegetable side dish like a slaw, heavily spiced, hot peppered Napa Lettuce and fermented, and not Chinese.  I love KimChi,  IN VERY SMALL NUMBERS.  But it has a problem with most alimentary canals,  soon we will see signs prohibiting KimChi lovers from riding in elevators or smoking.  The retorts are vile, So bad if you eat too much, you could clear a basketball  court. with three pointers.  

🔘  Because of immigration patterns, Chinese restaurateurs in America traditionally represented a limited pool of people from areas like Fujian, Hong Kong, and Guangdong. This was the demographic that introduced recipes for certain dishes like Kung Pao chicken, Moo Shu Pork, and Orange Chicken—based off of Sichuan, Beijing, and Hunan dishes, respectively. 

There’s an unofficial network that connects American-Chinese restaurants across the nation. Kari-Out, makes most of the soy sauce packets in the United States. And much of the soy sauce is not soy-sauce.   Sugar, salt and brown food stain concoction.  

In the Mecca’s of food like NY and San Francisco you’ll find more authentic street and High End Chinese food.   Many have in their name Golden, Garden, Lucky, and Happy in them. This isn’t incidental.  In China, restaurant names aren’t chosen for their quirkiness, but rather for their auspiciousness. This practice has carried over even in America. 

🔘  The most interesting thing to me about Chinese restaurants in America is that while the food may undergo a dramatic transformation for the sake of the masses, the superstitions are left untouched.   The crystal ball, the fat happy Buddha, that bowl overflowing with gold ingots—even the cat with the moving paws (which is Japanese in origin, not Chinese)? Those pieces aren’t just decorations. 

They’re fengshui tactics to bring in more money, superstitions that have been transferred down through family lines over centuries. So while Chinese people may compromise their food, they definitely won’t adjust their rituals involving superstitions.  I would rather they work on the better food part…


TRANSFORMATIONS AND INDIGESTIONS


Interview, Insight  and Confessions Of A Chinese Buffet Owner  —  

🔘  Buffets had its roots in the Swedish smorgasbord, which was originally a spread of appetizers — usually meats and cheeses — offered before the main course —  The Stockholm Olympics elevated the idea to the world stage in 1912, and the concept was expanded to include the main meal, with everything from soup and salad to dessert and more.   And it became popular because less servers needed,  and less headaches with help, just add a few more cooks, more profitable, sometimes.   

Whats really funny is in two of the ten places we tested, most of the back help appeared to be Mexican or South American.  The DIY grill and Sushi bars were staffed Asian.   Less Staff,  Less training, you need less highly paid staff,   Customers don’t get redo’s or returns, they don’t like it,  they dump it and get something else.  

🔘  Same food cooked every day.  Not chefs but cooks…  Bulk food purchase including things like cheap sacks of vegetables and cheaper cuts of meat, beat to death and served,  Odds are those who do eat the expensive stuff,  like Crab Legs and goodies,  there are many who don’t overeat and the crab legs are an attraction but few are good quality.

We’ve only got so much room in our stomachs, and buffets count on filling that space quickly with low-cost, high-carb foods. When you hit the Chinese buffet, what's first on the table?  Probably the white rice, fried rice, and noodles. 
Plate size is a huge factor in buffets, too. Most buffets will offer small, half-sized plates, ramekins for soup instead of bowls, and tiny dishes for desserts. That limits how much you can pile on your plate and carry, and once you’re back at your table you might rethink whether or not you really need that extra trip up to the line for another go.

🔘  One thing that’s probably huge, though, is the water glass. It’s essentially free for the restaurant, and it takes up space in your stomach.   More expensive food items will typically be surrounded by cheaper ones, and some places might even go as far as to keep the expensive items only partially full, in order to encourage you to take less and more of the cheaper.   That’s made even more effective by dividing expensive foods into smaller portion sizes. 

🔘  So how can buffets minimize their food waste.  Science. What you're going to eat is very predictable. The restaurant probably knows what you’re going to pile on your plate before you do.   Food placement -  when you get in line. Around two-thirds of what ends up on your plate comes from the first few items you get to. 

At a glance, the amount of food waste from a buffet might seem like it would be off the charts.  But in some areas, buffets are being put to incredibly good use combating food waste by putting it in the chiller overnight and serving it the next day.

Humans waste enough food every year to feed around two billion people.  You probably know someone who cringes at the thought of heading out to a buffet. Eating out anywhere is putting a lot of trust in a stranger, and buffets ask you to trust employees and other customers.  You have to be out of your friggin mind to believe that.

👺  Hitting the buffet and going right to the seafood section might seem like a good idea, especially if it's piled high with things you just don't get often, like oysters and crab legs.   But buffets on a budget are not those places if you do not know seafood. 


👺  WARNINGS: Seafood — Sushi — Seaweed    

—  Not a Good Idea  — 


F.A.O. AND W.H.O. SHINE FOOD SAFETY SPOTLIGHT ON SEAWEED

By News Desk on October 16, 2022

The FAO and WHO have highlighted a range of food safety hazards linked to eating seaweed plus a lack of data and regulation.  The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and World Health Organization (WHO) said there was a need for a risk assessment of relevant seaweed hazards to understand their public health significance.

The report reviews current food safety information about seaweed harvested from wild stocks and aquaculture. Asian nations such as China and Indonesia are by far the largest producers.

Demand is expected to rise as the population grows and sustainable ways of producing food are sought. Seaweeds have long been used as foods in different parts of the world. They are consumed as sea vegetables in soups and salads, used in sushi wrappings, and added to various foods as ingredients.

Factors that can affect the presence of hazards include the type of seaweed, its physiology, the production season, production waters, harvesting methods and processing.

POSSIBLE HAZARDS AND OUTBREAKS

Several hazards such as heavy metals and marine biotoxins are reported to be associated with seaweed. However, legislation and guidance documents on production and utilization are generally still lacking.

E. coli O7:H4 was behind an outbreak in Japan in 2020 with almost 3,000 patients caused by red seaweed used in a salad. In 2019, more than 100 people fell ill in Norway from norovirus after eating a frozen seaweed salad from China.

Hazards also vary depending on factors such as quality of the harvested or procured seaweed food product, consumer handling practices and if is eaten raw or processed.

Although deaths linked to consumption of seaweeds are rare, the limited data suggests certain hazards present potential moderate to minor food safety concerns. These include chemical hazards such as heavy metals like inorganic arsenic and cadmium, persistent organic pollutants such as dioxins and polychlorinated biphenyls, radionuclides and pesticide residues; microbiological hazards including Salmonella, Bacillus and norovirus; physical hazards like metal, glass, crustacean shells, micro- and nano plastics; and allergens.


NEED FOR GUIDELINES AND LEGISLATION

A joint FAO-WHO expert meeting on seaweed safety in October 2021 resulted in several suggestions including the collection and evaluation of seaweed consumption data at national and regional levels and monitoring such food and feed products for hazards.

Esther Garrido Gamarro, FAO fishery officer, said the recommendations could support the development of Codex guidelines or standards at the international level as well as regional and national legislation.

“In turn, the standards and policies would safeguard the production, processing and utilization of seaweed for food and feed while protecting the health of consumers,” she said.

China has a regulatory limit for cadmium in edible seaweeds, and France has maximum levels for inorganic arsenic, cadmium, lead and mercury in edible seaweeds. Although some private standards exist, they either do not address food safety directly or in detail.

Occurrence of hazards is influenced by factors such as seaweed classes and families, the age before harvest; conditions of the cultivation environment; and handling and processing.

Seaweed processing methods include drying, fermentation, blanching, freezing, or a combination but drying is the main one.


INTERNATIONAL — China and India — One item Shrimp — Shipping — Ships — 

🔘  When I see shellfish and fish deliveries 6 am at restaurants they are from commercial vendors and distributors who buy world wide and from overseas sources supposedly checked by our inspectors.  HA!

🔘  Lets look at Suppliers —  India, Thailand, China, Indonesia, the Pacific Rim — including Vietnam, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Mongolia —  India being prime which means basically your shrimp is DOA (dead on arrival). 

🔘  Then they arrive at the plant that removes heads, some entrails, and water freeze them that keeps them from shrinking and adds weight to the package for profit.

WATER WEIGHS 7.3 lbs. per gallon —  a few ounces makes 1.1/2 lbs of shrimp a two pound package — 

🔘  Then frozen solid and shipped by boat to the US and that can take weeks.  Thus the word “ Fresh shrimp is Bullsh*t” and not what I buy.  I have shrimp-mongers, an acronym based on fish-mongers and get “ Real fresh shrimp” —   Considerable difference.   Our true Asian market here carries live shrimp when available and then you know it’s fresh. That was before COVID.  If it is frozen in the store, the date means little in my mind, when was it’s last breath.

🔘  At Least 1,000 Indian Shrimp Containers Stranded In Chinese Ports  —  six months ago between 1,000 and 1,200 containers of shrimp belonging to at least 50 Indian exporters were currently stuck in Chinese ports. The containers, which each hold around 16 metric tons (MT) of frozen shrimp, are collectively worth INR 12 billion (USD 160.6 million, EUR 136.3 million), The New Indian Express reported.

Half of the 50 exporters are from Andhra Pradesh, the largest shrimp-producing state in India. Their permissions to export to China were suspended after Chinese authorities said traces of COVID-19 were detected on the packaging containing their shrimp.

Even if the low wage Indian workers farm the shrimp, now it goes to China for deveining, head removal, and even cheaper processing and packaging.    And China has the two fastest biggest ships in the world that do Hong Kong or Shanghai ports  to los Angeles in seven days.   

“It has been nearly two months since our exports have been blocked. They are neither clearing the containers from the ports nor clarifying if we can bring them back,” India Seafood Exporters Association Region President Aluri Indra Kumar said. Kumar said the owners of the containers will suffer heavy losses if the delay in clearance continues.


DETAILS OF THE 18,000TEU CONTAINER SHIP  — The Benjamin Franklin

Who Says No First Class On Container Ships 


🔘   The container ship will be deployed on the Pearl River Express, a service connecting the main China ports, including Xiamen, Nansha and Yantian, with the US West Coast ports.

🔘   Benjamin Franklin’s design is similar to most big vessels of the company’s fleet. It features a unique higher castle located at its front, enabling it to optimize the space while providing improved visibility from the bridge and a better torsion resistance.

🔘   The optimized hull design improves the vessel’s propulsion in the water. The ship’s layout allows positioning of fuel tanks below the castle. The double hull design protects the fuel tanks, making the vessel compliant with the MARPOL 12A regulation.  Hull is siliconized steel for less water drag — allowing higher cruise speeds.   For a vessel of this size 21KNOTS or 24 miles per hour allows fast transfers.

🔘   The design also includes raised lashing gateways for the support of containers and external lashing, as well as new twist locks for improved safety.


🔘   At a length of 1,300ft, width of 177ft and height of 197ft (the highest antenna at 230ft), the giant vessel is longer than the Empire State Building, wider than an American football field, and taller than a 20-floor building.

🔘  The vessel’s maximum load capacity is up to 18,000 containers, including 1,500 reefer containers, representing the volume of 235 Olympic pools of approximately 590,000m,  It has a 26-member crew to operate facets, including a waste recycling system, cooking and swimming pool.

🔘  Engine and propulsion — The vessel is powered by the latest generation MAN B&W 11S90ME-C9.2, electronically-controlled, two-stroke engine housed in a 78 ft-long engine room. The engine is as powerful as 900 Ford Focus cars and has a cruise thrust of 21kt, which is equivalent to that of 11 Boeing 747-400 engines.


2022 - SAM'S And Warehouses Don’t Sell Locally Farmed Shrimp — INDIA -CHINA

Screen Shot 2022-07-12 at 7.11.22 PM


WARNINGS — LARGE CHAINS — SUPER MARKETS — PROMOTIONAL SALES —  

🔘  Most seafood is not local products and susceptible to travel problems —  — All Imported — To me fresh is when the boats come in to and I am standing there with a ten to twenty dollar bill in my hand.   Better restaurants have deals with local fisherman and get best choice,  a commercial fisherman has his catch sold before he even leaves the dock to fish — most are not interested in being in retail when they could be out on the water — 

🔘  Find a good fish-monger and thats where the good stuff is thats local.   It’s not with the big boys, ask around the docks, find a good source and learn to prepare it, most captains are great cooks on the smaller boats as the larger boats have a cook.   

🔘  There are a few reasons you should think about skipping seafood at buffets these, and the first is obvious: the potential for some serious food poisoning,  as MedlinePlus says shellfish and fish are both extremely susceptible to contamination and the epidemic is world wide.  

🔘   There’s something else to consider, too, and it comes from an all-you-can-eat buffet lover  and me who went to Reddit to dispel some mysteries about buffets.  When we asked what food they would stay away from at all costs, the answer was  “CRAB LEGS”.

🔘  The TV show Deadliest Catch is a reality television series that premiered on the Discovery Channel on April 12, 2005. The show follows crab fishermen aboard fishing vessels in the Bering Sea during the Alaskan King Crab and Snow Crab (Opilio) fishing seasons.  The boats home at the Aleutian Islands port of Dutch Harbor, Alaska.   it is a very popular show on TV and dangerous work in an unforgiving environment.

The crabs you see caught are the real crabs rated by size minimums and sex, quick frozen and sent fresh to fine restaurants and markets by food brokers who know good from bad. 

🔘  What you see being caught is not what winds up on Chinese buffets usually harvested by other countries like Russia.  And definitely not on the menus at Chinese buffets, they buy the old, the small, the rejects, parts only, the cheap, stuff strictly as a teaser to drag you in.  Also the dead pieces that fall in the hold when the crabs are unloaded from the boats.

I repeat some ( albeit many,OK most )  buffets are the seconds, unsold inventory, broken pieces, undersized back legs etc, not what you might find in a select specialist honorable Crab house.    

🔘  Adding to the problem, seafood is expensive ( good seafood) they are the bait the buffet uses to draw you in offering crab, shrimp, and mussels.  And after the few are taken whats left is, will be then be picked over and handled by the customers with the same utensils, no gloves and in a Pandemic situation, this is stupid and  extremely dangerous… since COVID-19 can sustain on metal.

🔘  And if someone there is from the far east and happens to have his family with him, they will empty the tray and leave nothing for anyone else.  They will jump ahead of you and take as much as they can and leave you nothing because they don’t eat the other stuff and they are greedy. 

🔘  "I'm being serious,” my owner friend from Reddit.   He  continued. "I have seen Chinese buffets at the fish market going and buying bottom of the barrel seafood, including crab legs past their prime. And then they don’t steam them properly either to save on volume.”  And when you see mushy particle substance in the water or legs, run fast, don’t walk away. That is the source if under 165 degrees or higher short cooked in dirty water.

🔘  The Redditor also adds that oysters are usually less-than-fresh, often imported and past their prime once they make it to the buffet table. If you’re not skipping these, you might be risking a trip to the hospital.  A severe dangerous trip.  Right now global Seafood is dangerous and COVID can survive in conditions other germs only dream of.  

🔘  Just think that buffet can get you COVID-19 and food poisoning all in one meal — There’s a huge potential for illness there, especially when those foods aren’t kept at the proper temperature.  Thats a real bad combination —
Aside from improperly cooked or stored foods — which can be a danger anywhere, not just at buffets — the other big danger is cross-contamination.   

🔘Cross-contamination can also happen anywhere, but buffets have more potential hazards. With all customers serving themselves, there's a huge chance for the transfer of germs on serving utensils. And it isn't hard for someone to use one serving spoon for multiple dishes. This is bad; please don’t do it. 

🔘  Long sleeves making contact with the food or serving line is bad, especially during  COVID — And be aware of people who might pick up a dinner roll, change their mind and put it back and is common  — 
Look for telltale danger signs like spoon handles touching food  —  Or other customers returning with dirty plates, not allowed  —  Dishes that don’t have their own individual serving spoon or set of tongs  —  

🔘  Since you’re already thinking about buffet safety, let’s touch on the sneeze guard.  Don’t go around it  —  Take advantage of the small plates on offer.  They’ll minimize food waste and encourage you to take less food, which might be exactly what you want  —   

🔘   Don’t opt for a bigger plate, and make sure you’re seated as far from the buffet as possible — lower your contact and elbow touching as theses people are volume oriented and don’t pay much attention to handling food. 

🔘   Since you know now that the first things you see are the majority of what you take, the experts also suggest that you break that pattern, take a look around first  —   see what’s on the menu, and if you know ahead of time that your favorite roast chicken is halfway down the buffet, you’re less likely to pile the carbs on your plate before you even get there  —   And while you might be tempted to go without eating for the day before you hit the buffet, snacking on some fresh veggies before you head out will go a long way in managing the worst of your impulses  —

  

COUNTRIES HAVE THEIR OWN STYLES — PROCESSES — TRADITIONS AND GENRES

🔘  Japan  —  We credit the explanations to Benihana on Sushi and Sashimi as they work with basic Japanese cuisine in the United States but close enough to the real Japan.  They are many independent Japanese restaurants, some highly rated and expensive in the market with followings and reputations

🔘  Miso Soup  —  Miso soup is a traditional Japanese soup consisting of a stock called “ dashi" into which softened miso paste is mixed. Many ingredients are added depending on regional and seasonal recipes, and personal preference.   Miso is made from Soy — 

🔘  Thailand  —  Thai food is based on the five basic tenets of taste as expressed in the culinary world. In reality it is shared by many other countries in that part of the world.  They are:  SWEET, SOUR, BITTER, SALTY AND SAVORY.  Any dish will fit into one or more of these categories and to achieve the authentic Thai taste certain ingredients are called for.

🔘  LAO Food  —  Food and Music.  Every culture I have encountered, has its own DNA in these two fields.  Lao is interesting and in some cases tends to be controversial.  Mostly not true, the entire controversy stems because LAO food sometimes gets a bad rap based on spiciness. It’s only as spicy as the Host or Chef makes it.

🔘  Real Rice  —  Rice is my favorite side dish  and very popular with the takeout gang who make a meal of it in a small white containers with a metal hanger.  I love rice, it’s good for you and being bland and flexible it can be made exciting in a million different ways.  With chicken and vegetables its a real meal.

I use and believe in rice cookers. Yes,  many do it the old way but I use enough rice to to let the cooker do the thinking and it has never failed me. I have a Sanyo M100S, a great size for my appetite and friends. Measure, one click perfection.  I give it five stars.


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