Food is a Friend; or, Fixing Food Amnesia.

30 Jan

I’m not weird.

Myself and countless others around this tiny globe of ours whip out our cameras the minute interesting and tasty looking food appears before us. Eating is a blessing which I count every day, not in calories, but in happy moments.

Apologies to all who are starting diets/are calorie counters/think food is evil for whatever reason, for this post is dedicated to food.

Like many other posts I’ve made, yes, this one features photos of food.  Some people think I’m crass or strange for taking photos of food before I eat it. Some people call it “an Asian thing” (of which I was not aware of as being a “thing” associated only with one ethnicity??). But to me, it’s common sense.

We take photos of things we want to remember, of visual pieces of information that our aging minds will surely forget. So, why NOT take a photo of something delicious? Once you  consume it, it’s gone forever! Sure you can order it again, or recreate it at home, but that moment, that singular experience, is left to your memory once you eat that  pretty little dish. Unlike buying a piece of clothing, you have nothing tangible with which to remember your food by. Photos are a necessity, to me!

I love eating out at interesting places, and trying new food. Sure, I like to taste delicious things, and make the segue from “hungry” to “full” or at least “satisfied,” but choosing, receiving and devouring food are all steps that help to understand where the food comes from.

Whoever created the dish learned it from somewhere else, or were inspired from a sampling of other techniques or ingredients they’ve recently tried or tasted to create a new dish. Their recreation or establishment of a dish is their art. This isn’t just true of “fancy” foods, but also of our everyday eateries like chain restaurants or food cooked in the home. The original recipe had to come from somewhere, and the person who made it learned how to do it from someone else.

When I travel, I love to eat as many kinds of food from as many kinds of places as possible. I make sure to switch it up from total dives to high end eateries. Eating is something that everyone needs to do throughout the day to get by, and eating alongside different kinds of people is how I most enjoy “experiencing” a place  when traveling.

If I’m within the U.S., it’s nice to experience that the food culture from one city to another is decidedly different if you go to the right spots. Outside of the country, experiencing food culture is always truly different and always awesome. A way of life that is different from your own is most easily expressed through food; the way they eat it, how they eat it, when they eat it, and with whom they eat with.

Every bite to me when I eat out is exciting. The worst case scenario for me is to travel to a new city or country, and not know where to eat! I’m pretty adamant about researching where to eat before heading out for the night, or traveling to a new locale. One of the worst things I can think of is wasting an opportunity for a fun food experience.

This is not to say that I don’t give in to McDonald’s or ye olde Olive Garden from time to time, but to me, those are notes of nostalgia that I play most often when I go home to Pittsburgh. In my youth, my parents always took us to those kinds of places, since there’s not much in the way of food culture where I lived. Plus, my parents owned a Vietnamese/Chinese restaurant when I was young, so their food was always the best to me. Everything else I ate that wasn’t my parents’ cooking was some novel thing that was only meant to fill in a blank when my parents’ were too busy to cook, or it wasn’t convenient for me to pop home for a meal during my busy high school days.

And so, of course, here are some food pictures from the last week or so.

 

From Waterloo & City, a wonderful English food eatery in Culver City. Delicious and innovative menu, and classy atmosphere.

Pork liver pate with something else.. it kills me that i can't remember and that it's not on their online menu! See what I mean about food memory? It was delicious btw.

Lamb with a spicy banger. Nomnomnom.

Special of the day, Bone Marrow pot pie. SO GOOD. The little lump on top is the bone sticking out ❤

Seafood pasta dish. Sooo many mussels!

 

In the heart of Koreatown scoping out their super fun grocery stores.

Ridiculous sale on dungeness crabs the day we were there! $1.99 per pound and fresh and kicking from the the tank from this guy!

Heukmee makegeolli for sale.. I'd never seen the pink variety before! The awesome cartoon whale on the front promises you epic drunken times, I think. Haha...

THEY SELL GEODUCK POKEMON!!! haha. No, just regular geoduck, but I sure LOLed when I looked at this and wasn't sure if it was a joke or not. GEODUCK IS REAL, NOT JUST A POKEMON IT TURNS OUT =0

God forbid you put your hang in the tank. This fish puppet will steal your soul.

 

A tiny corner joint in Koreatown, our friend Nicole’s favorite place to get lunch during the work week:

Such a nice fresh barley tea ❤

So many side dishes come with whatever you order! Looove eating out at Korean places.

My raw fish salad. Delicious and wayyy too filling!

Will's deep deep dish of unagi!

 

Food-themed adventures at Target!

I regret not getting these things… but at the same time I don’t…

Left: Donut maker. Right: Cupcake maker. So cute looking o.o

What a cute way to display your food! Mickey-shaped bowls and plates!

 

And now, for a taste of Xoia, located in Silver Lake!

I had a banh mi recently that was really extraordinary. It combined the flavors in pho and made the bahn mi into a french dip style of sandwich.

The photo doesn't do it justice. It was literally the best bahn mi I have EVER HAD. This is a real vietnamese person saying that, so PLEASE ENJOY THE AUTHENTICITY OF MY COMMENT.

In an atmospheric lunch date with my buddies Twinkie and Hairy (not his real name is not “hairy”), we traveled to 26 Beach Restaurant, in Venice for an epic French Toast adventure. They had one FULL page dedicated to French toast, y’all.

I'd like to think that LOVE is Twinkie's thought bubble haha.

Really cute shabby chic decor.

I usually hate these tiny chandeliers, but when you put a bunch togeher with some glass strands, well, NOW it's cute.

Hairy's corned beef hash omlette thing. It was delicious and calming.

Twinkie's peach covered french toast croissants!

Banana custard-stuffed french toast with whipped cream and mangoes was mine for the killing. SO deliciously dense!

And the last stop on this food filled post is our first try at Indo Cafe, which is walking distance from my new place. It was pretty good! I still say Simpang Asia is my favorite for indonesian in this area though. This place was just as good, with a larger menu, and a bit more atmospheric decor, but the prices were higher by a few bucks. Simpang is more chill, with a more limited menu, but has an attached Asian market which is fun to romp through while you wait for your food.

Corn Fritters!

The inside of said fritters...

The coconut rice from this dish was amazing. Everything else was good, too, but still prefer Simpang's version of this.

Epic fish! THIS was very very good,and for $12, we fed both of us, and still have half the fish leftover for dinner tonight! yay!

After that meal, we scuttled home in the rain.

Thanks for sticking with it for this entire post! More fun times up ahead!

 

 

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2 Responses to “Food is a Friend; or, Fixing Food Amnesia.”

  1. Sparklewolfie January 30, 2011 at 8:25 pm #

    Haha I take photos of my food too! I thought it was normal…

  2. Turtle January 31, 2011 at 3:09 am #

    most of that food doesn’t look too appetizing…because i’m vegetarian haha but i really want that cupcake maker!! so cute!!!

    also, what kind of camera do you use? your photos are really good quality.

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