- Last Tuesday: Soaked rice, cooked mung beans, and cut banana leaves for banh chung sticky rice cakes.
- Last Wednesday: Wrapped banh chung cakes, made pickled shallots (dua hanh) and tangy pickled cauliflower, carrot, and red bell pepper (dua gop). Refrigerated it all.
- Saturday, after landing in San Jose: Went directly to an Asian market to pick up vegetables, lots of pork. Rory pulled out the Tet decorations and we hung all the red and gold around the house. Attended a Chinese dumpling-making party.
- Sunday: Ate a banh chung sticky rice cake and pickled vegetables, called my parents to wish them chuc mung nam moi, and texted a bunch of friends to wish them the same. Marinated the meats for pork riblet kho and Vietnamese charcuterie (gio lua, cha mo, gio bo). Candied orange peels (mut vo cam).
- Monday: Made Vietnamese sausages, head cheese, simmered pork riblets in caramel sauce, cleaned the house.
- Today: Putting last minute touches on more food and preparing for a blowout Tet dinner with friends, including Pim, David Kinch, and winemaker Randall Grahm and his family.
P.S. For recipes of the items mentioned, above, I crack open (really!) my cookbook, Into the Vietnamese Kitchen, and follow my instructions.