My post last Friday about Asian elders dissuading younger people from mastering the food of their heritage prompted many emotional and humorous responses, including this email from a man in North Carolina:
I would like to send my gratitude on finding this website. You have made my home life incredible exciting. How you ask, well, my wife and soul mate is Vietnamese. She is from Ha Noi! Ever since I met her, she always had one over me by cooking up some incredible Vietnamese dishes.
Over the past few years since we got married (7) the cooking has become less and less of a traditional meal in our home setting. My wife has returned to school here to further her education and becoming an Licensed Aesthesia. She does work long hours sometimes 6 days a week.
So, as you could see, her time when she arrives home is taken up by our beautiful little 1 and 5 year olds. We mostly go eating out at our local PHO shops. My career situation has allowed me to work from home so I am home 2 -3 days a week. I love to cook myself. When I do conjure up some normal dishes, she loves it only because she did not make it and appreciates my help after a long day at the salon.
I see her look on her face that tells me “Why can I not put the effort into creating a Vietnamese dish?” Well, present day, I found your web site!!!! I have gone through just but some recipes, and have taken up the wok and started to get right into it.
I surprised my wife 2 weeks ago with a traditional dish “Bo Luc Lac” [wok seared shaking beef]. She was very surprised and speechless. She even made a comment “Were did I go to get this”! Well, I had to inform her differently. I have even tried and succeeded in make Ca Co Tho [fish simmered in caramel sauce]! Her favorite.
Again, thanks for the Spice in your recipes and added spice to our marriage. She still raves to her Vietnamese girl friends on how a “Canadian White Guy” has been able to accept the Vietnamese culture whole heartedly.
You don't have to be Vietnamese to identify with the sentiments here. I'd have to add that this gentleman is quite the model for anyone who wants to romance a significant other, whether you're starting out or have been together for a long time . It's an old-fashioned saying, "A way to a man's heart is through his stomach." In the 21st century, it's great to see the reverse too!
Have similar experiences of your own?