Saturday, December 19, 2009

white people eating weird

so - a seattle pi blogger visited my favorite Lao grocery store in seattle (vientiane) and decided to try some of the homemade dishes in the little plastic tubs that they sell there in their cooler. i've bought them myself - especially when i am cooking some food for friends, and i don't have the time to do everything myself. (ask the farrar family; i brought them laap one time, and they "loved" it.)

well, this guy had just finished reading ant egg soup for the soul, or whatever its called. i reviewed it a while back... but even after his Lao food experience, he said he still struggles to define Lao food. he says the laap is too bitter, and assumes it americanized. (it's not.) but i really don't see what the problem is myself. if it's hot and spicy (and clearly not mexican) and it tastes really good: it's Lao food.

check out his article here.

its a pretty humorous read, as this guy tries a little too hard to be funny (he plays off stereotypes about the dangers of visiting a southend grocery store. he also tends towards redundancy in his attempt to describe the cashier; he keeps going on and on - about his hair, his looks, what he's doing with cds, blah blah blah, and even includes a vaguely offensive reference to the cashier resembling an asian mafia guy in a john woo film. funny thing: i know this particular cashier, and he's nothing like the description in the article. also, he compares the jeo to martial arts... yikes! did you really have to use that analogy, dear white blogger? seems like Lao food isn't the only thing you have trouble describing. apparently, if someone is asian and doesn't fit the stereotype of violin solos and high math scores, then they are difficult to describe?)

and look at this picture, what is he doing with that rice and bamboo? some white people really need a tour guide to get them through a meal that aint pizza. Lao food really isn't weird folks... but put in front of the wrong person, it can be.

p.s. i will soon post another recipe from aeuey penn's book... and i promise i don't hate white people. three of my best friends are white.


mscinda said...

Funny article. I enjoy reading about people who experience Lao cuisine for the first time. The responses are interesting. I'm not sure why the laap would be described as bitter, perhaps it was the toasted rice powder in it or the galangal? Beef laap with tongue, liver, and tripe is always yummy to me.

stephanie said...

laap. my mouth is watering.

Autumn said...

Wow, I just read this article today when I was doing a search on Lao related stuff like recipes, restaurants and blogs (which is how I came across your blog).

I go to that store to buy my Thai/Lao groceries. I too live in North Seattle!! If you are craving some really good Lao food you should try Thai Palms ( Despite the name, they do have a authentic Lao menu. It's only a couple of blocks away from Vientiane. My favorite is the Nam Kao Tod. :) If you go there, let me know what you think!

I'm an Americaned-Thai, but my family is from the Esan area; also my stepmom is from Laos. It's really cool to see that you have a blog about Lao culture and food. Do you speak the language?

maly said...

Thanks for posting the link to this guy's blog. My big mouth just HAD to leave a comment on it for him and I'm definitely reposting his link on my facebook page. He is about to get a lot of hits soon and probably more comments than he can intelligently respond to.

jrm said...

maly - i posted your comment to my blog last monday (4/5/10). hilarious.