Perhaps my busiest day in Saigon was the day I had three back-to-back events to attend. In the morning, I had the launch and signing of the Vietnamese translation of my cookbook, Nau Bang Ca Trai Tim, which translates as “cook with all your heart.” (Yes, the Vietnamese publisher changed my title entirely to make it more suitable for the Vietnamese audience.) Then in the afternoon, I stopped by a university to promote my popcorn line, Uncle Jax and do a photo op with the students. Lastly, a meeting with

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the year. I suspend all travel and work events just so I can be home for the holiday. That being said, Thanksgiving is not without its own stresses, especially if you are hosting the big meal. Since it only comes once a year, a lot rides on this gathering. Fortunately for you, I’ve hosted countless Thanksgiving lunches, dinners, potlucks, and parties. I’ve posted some of my favorite Thanksgiving recipes, from Creole corn to this easy broccoli rice casserole. This year, I’m going to help

Let’s take a break from our regularly scheduled program. On my YouTube channel, I started a new series called “Christine Tries,” an all-encompassing title for videos in which I’ll be trying anything from different foods to (gasp!) driving a car. (Just wait for it—it’ll be done.) For my first “Christine Tries” episode, as a nod to my many trips to Vietnam and Asia, I try snacks from the continent. To make it more interesting, I do a true blind taste test—others selected these snacks, so I have no idea what

I’ve written about Cua Ba Chi before, but since it’s one of my favorite places to eat in Saigon, I’m dedicating today’s entire post to this very special crab stall. I first learned about this spot from my parents, who took us there for the hubs’s 30th birthday back in 2013. We’ve all since fallen in love with the cua rang me, or tamarind crab. Since it can be too sweet for my palate, I now request less sugar in the sauce, just like I do with my boba. (You

During my trip to Vietnam, I did a fan meet-up at iKem, the only shop in Vietnam making ice cream using liquid nitrogen. My cousins started the business and invited me to create some of the in-store flavors. I designed two: honey lavender (the recipe can be found in my cookbook) and matcha green tea. iKem appeals to children and teenagers because of the novel liquid nitrogen process. The fact that ice cream is frozen amidst a cloud of billowing smoke makes it Instagram-Worthy, and nowadays, that seems to be

This travel vlog is a perfect demonstration of how Vietnam today is at the intersection of the old and the new. We’ve got a man pan-frying crabs in a wok on the sidewalk, cigarette dangling from his lips, sandals on his feet. Then across town, we’ve got teenagers making ice cream using liquid nitrogen. Vietnam is an emerging market, and this is apparent when you visit. Why I love Vietnam: iKem. My family has a liquid nitrogen ice cream shop, and I get to exercise my culinary creativity by creating

Following my trip to Danang where I had one of the best bowls of bun bo Hue at Ba Dieu, I’m going to share with you my recipe for this spicy lemongrass beef noodle soup, which I learned from my Aunt Carol. Bun bo Hue is one of my favorite Vietnamese noodle soups. Growing up, I loved it more than pho (but only if my mama made it less spicy for my sensitive tastebuds). The broth consists of boiled beef and pork bones with hints of lemongrass, fish sauce, shrimp

Happy Halloween! ’Tis the season of everything pumpkin: pumpkin bread, pumpkin pie, and pumpkin lattes. Here’s a little something different for you this Halloween. Check out the persimmon. Translated in Latin as “fruit of the gods,” persimmon is widely popular among East Asians, particularly the Japanese, Korean, Chinese, and Vietnamese. My mama loved persimmon—I recall boxes of them piled up on our dining table growing up whenever they’re in season (which is now). My in-laws also love persimmon. They pick fresh persimmon in the fall, eat them raw, and dry

This video shows Sady, a woman with cerebral palsy, using Apple technology to edit videos. What’s mind-blowing is the video was actually edited by Sady herself using the very same assistive technology. Yesterday, Apple announced the launch of their redesigned Apple accessibility website, which now includes videos showing how people of all ability levels use Apple technology to achieve vocational goals and do everyday tasks. These videos not only empower people living with disabilities, they also challenge everyone to rethink what a person can and cannot do regardless of abilities.

Because I was born and raised in America, when I meet Vietnamese elders, they are often surprised that: (1) I can speak Vietnamese, and (2) I not only can eat, but love to eat, Vietnamese food. Then when I say I even love mam tom and mam nem, they are shocked. This is because mam tom and mam nem are the stinkiest of stinky sauces. If you thought nuoc mam, or fish sauce, was bad, wait till you get a whiff of this purple stuff! Truthfully, I love these pungent

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