Vancouver Sun

Wed, Oct 31, 2012

Although the low-carb diet may have become the trend for summer beach bodies, the cooler weather brings out heartier fare, which usually means comfort foods.

Along with comforting slow, rich stews, braises and roasts, there’s always room for plates of steaming hot pasta, smothered with a hamper of simmered tomatoes heady with garlic and herbs, or with slowly braised meat liberally doused with dry reds to emerald-hued olive oils, freshly pressed and green from the local frantoios. Or the velvety creaminess of a warm bowl of risotto, the infamous rice dish, slowly stirred to carbohydrate heaven, with all my favourite fats, butter, creams and cheeses. This, I think, is the comfort food of northern Italy.

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Wed, Sep 19, 2012

Tofu, other than rice, is probably one of the most important staples throughout Asia. It’s versatile: it can be served in a soup, as an appetizer or a main course. It can be incorporated in anything from an everyday common dish to an elaborate celebratory dinner. It is beloved by rich and poor alike.

In the new cookbook Asian Tofu (Ten Speed Press), my dear friend Andrea Nguyen writes, “Despite all the terrible terms that have been attracted to tofu, it is still considered a good four-letter word by countless people. I being one of them, having eaten it since I was a child. Before I had my first set of baby teeth set in, it was more than likely that I had bowls of soft silken tofu laced with my unbearable Pablum.”

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Tue, Jan 18, 2011

Here on the “Wet” Coast, there seems to be no end to the damp, cold weather. The comfort of home entertaining becomes inviting; I especially love hot pot dining, the Chinese version of fondue. It is relatively simple, all the preparations can be done ahead of time and, since the guests do their own cooking, the hosts can enjoy themselves at the dinner table.

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Walking into the 53 year old family run Lexington Barbecue, I’m transferred back to a bygone retro era of Formica-topped tables and wood paneled walls plastered with a plethora of barbecue awards and memorabilia. Before sitting down to my first encounter of authentic Read More
Wed, Aug 05, 2015
Thailand, a country rich with a long history, imperial culture, renowned beaches to lush jungle retreats and an exotic cuisine that has become popular world-wide. The country is large and stretches from the northern borders of China and Myanmar down to the tropical south of Malaysia. With this vast length, Read More
Tue, Nov 18, 2014
The Cathedral, Ho Chi Minh City
Some 13 years ago I stepped on the expansive sandy beach of My Khe, otherwise known as China Beach for the thousands of American and Australian soldiers that were stationed in Da Nang during the Vietnam War. Some 50 years ago after the 1964 Gulf of Tonkin incident in which Read More
Tue, Oct 28, 2014
Flying over and approaching the former ancient metropolis of Constantinople, the once glorious capital city and landmass of the Roman, Byzantine, Latin and Ottoman Empires, I was overwhelmed by the sheer scope and size of “new” Istanbul. This significant ancient city, which had been engrained in my memory since I Read More
Tue, Oct 21, 2014