Traveling Back in Time: Memories of Wet Markets – COVID-19 Isolation, Day 52

Like most of you, I am getting a bit off kilter here. I mean, after all it is Day 52 for me in COVID-19 lockdown. But I broke that run of strict isolation today. I didn’t want to. But I had to. This morning I dashed out to visit my spine doctor, due to ongoing … More Traveling Back in Time: Memories of Wet Markets – COVID-19 Isolation, Day 52

The Wonder Spice: A Review of Turmeric, a Cookbook by Colleen Taylor Sen and Helen Saberi

Several years ago, I set up an informal experiment with an observation of two: in my tiny two-person household, I cooked and ate only Indian food for one month, relying heavily on cookbooks by Julie Sahni and Madhur Jaffrey. I felt terrific, with more energy and alertness than I knew what to do with. Of … More The Wonder Spice: A Review of Turmeric, a Cookbook by Colleen Taylor Sen and Helen Saberi

The Things They Carried*: Brief Glimpses of French Food in Vietnam

In the film, “Indochine,” you sense the rampant orientalism that made Edward Said one of the most quoted scholars on the subject of colonialism and the creation of the “Other.” The heat, the fans, the sweat, the passions, the exoticism and erotocism, all these visual cues recreate the mental picture many of us have regarding … More The Things They Carried*: Brief Glimpses of French Food in Vietnam

The Chinese in the West: How Railroad Coolies Ate

Until our own times, the nineteenth century saw some of the most profound changes in social structure and population movements in the history of the world. How people fed themselves also changed as people migrated from continent to continent. Boarding houses became extremely common and popular beginning in the nineteenth, thanks to this movement of … More The Chinese in the West: How Railroad Coolies Ate