Photo of the Week – Vietnamese Family Meals

I don’t have an Italian grandma. But if they’re anything like older Vietnamese women, I don’t think I’m missing out much.

I recently went to a family get-together and enjoyed an awesome meal of Vietnamese food. There was chicken ragout, egg rolls, rice flour pancakes stuffed with ground pork and tree ear mushrooms and much more.

Sometimes I worry about my generation. I love to eat but don’t really know how to cook. What’s going to happen to the next generation when no one’s around to cook traditional meals?

Or carve garnishes out of carrots and tomatoes?

Or birds out of eggs (chicken and quail)?

I recently read an article that said parts of the earth will be uninhabitable in only 300 years due to climate change.

Is it wrong that it bothers me more that no one will be around to make cheesy / cute garnishes?

What’s your take? Is cooking a waste of time when it takes three times as long to make something as it does to eat it?

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13 thoughts on “Photo of the Week – Vietnamese Family Meals

  1. cosmoHallitan

    Oh my gosh, those garnishes are amazing!

    While I enjoy eating out (as my blog clearly demonstrates), I love to cook and we actually eat in most nights. There is something about all the chopping and the mixing of ingredients that is very calming to me. It’s also nice to know all the ingredients you’re eating – and to take a break from the pork fat used in just about everything in China. Don’t get me wrong, I love me some pork fat. But my arteries need a break sometimes!
    cosmoHallitan recently posted..Downstairs by David LarisMy Profile

    1. James Post author

      Pork fat… Yummm. I get where you’re coming from, though, wanting to know exactly what goes into your food. The newspapers here always talk about pho noodles soaked in formaldehyde (as a preservative!) or the latest, bean sprouts soaked in urea to make them look shiny (!) Even buying groceries is unsafe nowadays. Sigh. I so wish there was a real farmer’s market here…
      James recently posted..Saigon Cooking Class – Food As ArtMy Profile

  2. Louise Fitzgerald

    I have just taken up cooking again after 10 years of making almost nothing at all but pasta and pizza on the weekend. What would I have done without the Italians, I wonder. I am enjoying the preparation and cooking, but I find it very hard to think of different dishes to make and for inspiration I have resorted to women’s magazines picked up in the laundries of the campgrounds we call home. Without an oven it’s hard though. I could do with a Vietnamese family meal to give me a few ideas, but I will never be a garnish-maker.

    1. James Post author

      Are you guys cooking over a gas stove or campfire? With your constant traveling / camping, I can’t see you making full on meals (or do you?!?) My first few months, I made pots and pots of spag bol and froze it. Now I’m a bit sick of it. I probably cook once a week and even then, I don’t impress myself. I want my old cook from Phnom Penh back!!!
      James recently posted..Phnom Penh, My FriendMy Profile

  3. gwen healy

    it takes nine months for a fetus to develop into a full term baby, requires a lot of patience and love, the labor may be long or short but oh how you forget all the time and energy put in when you see the end result and the joy just amazing. Now it is true that a baby doesn’t get consumed immediately after birth, they do last a long time, but the work is worth the effort to produce something everyone can enjoy and savor for a very special few wonderful moments that bring such smiles and ooohs and ahhhs to us all. True the next generation may find a way to do this and prepare foods with less time involved but it won’t be as much fun and not as enjoyable.

    1. James Post author

      Wow, Gwen. That’s deep. And it also explains why I don’t like children. But if I’m not the one that needs to give birth / take care of them, I don’t mind so much. Just like I’m happy eating food other people made, I can bring myself to play around with kids if I can give them back once they start to get annoying… There’s no hope for me, is there?
      James recently posted..Photo of the Week — Keys and KidsMy Profile


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