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Taiwan in a Pot

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I mean, really. Taiwanese or not, if looking at this doesn’t induce some watering in the mouth, I’m afraid we don’t have anything in common. Just imagine that gelatinous pork belly coated in DARK, CARAMELLY AMBER SAUC… wait. It looks more like blurry, grainy, monotone photo that’s seen too much UV light?

Ooooh… haaa.. ha… you know… Instagram being SO happening and all… ha.. I thought it’d be cool to do a little “retro” look. Just kind of keeping up with the tech world… kind of thing… BUT HEY, not fond of distorted view of the world behind diffused lenses? OK. We’re back.

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Magic Shrooms

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OK, I sort of bashed it in my previous post (as if it matters), and stripped its right for photos (as if they care).  But maybe I didn’t make myself as clear as I should have.  What I meant was, the tourist-trappy pre fixe we ordered SUCKED, yes ( “Ma’am, this is Robuchon’s signature this… Robuchon’s signature that…”  Pfffffff!!).  BUT everything else the local French were eating beside us looked SUBLIIIME!!  If only we had another €300 dangling in our pocket, we could have theoretically rewrite our Robuchon memory.  Or if only I grew a layer of cowhide thick enough to ask for a picture, “excuse… eh.. moi?…  flash, flash oui?”, I could have at least showcase that beautiful morel pasta here.

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The Perfect O

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My tormenting yet bittersweet affair with eggs has been nothing short of a Hollywood love story.  It began as mutual loath in early years, but turned into a passionate obsession overnight  in adulthood.  Then six month ago at the height of our oblivious happiness, we were torn apart and forbidden by authorities without warning or mercy… cold turkey style.  If I’m sounding overly dramatic, I’m not.  I believe it’s fair to say that I consumed on average, 3 eggs per day for the past decade.  Some days 4 to 5 if we were feeling naughty.  A disgusted horror by any cardiologists’ standard.

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A Confused Chicken Rice

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I assume people meant my ethnicity, not the city I currently live in, but even that has no easy answer.  Three decades of my life so far are sort of evenly spent in three different locations.  The country I was born in but haven’t lived in for more than 2 decades.  The country I spent all my teens therefore granted me a citizenship of.  Then there’s the city I feel most at home, where it shaped me into an individual and till this day, still defines me.  So which one are they talking about?  Oh, and of course this shithole place where I’m currently residing in for the past 3 years, where I don’t even want my name to go anywhere near the close proximity of.  I think it’s safe to say that I’m a product of the environment of a shrinking globe.

 That I’m suffering from identity crisis.

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To Roll, or Not To Roll

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Like standing in the DMV queue and being asked (judged simultaneously too) if I wanted to be an organ donor.  Or whether to leave my BJ apartment on a PM2.5 hazardous day for groceries or starve with cheese crackers.  Or whether to spend the last scrap of my monthly budget on the air purifier we really do NEED versus the new iPhone I really do WANT.  Nobody said being an adult is easy.

So years of life-defining choices as such have boiled down to this moment – I find myself standing in the kitchen in BJ (how the hell did I end up here…?), deciding which is the better way to form an Asian meat pie.

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Duck Ragu Spinoff

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Like maybe how it brings me back to a perfect bistro setting on a perfect corner in Paris, or maybe how I found a rustic-charm, free-range chicken farm in outskirt BJ where we took our dogs to spend a leisurely weekend.  But, NO.  I’ve never had such a dish that’s remotely close in Paris.  And these eggs were bought from Taobao because I was too lazy to do grocery, and delivered by a postman who left it in front of my door step because I was too lazy to open the door.  What brings me to share this recipe which I’ve already made several times before, is that this time… it’s gonna be served in this beeeautiful, over hundreds RMB black iron skillet that I found on Taobao for 35RMB!!!!

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You.. Dirty Dirty Pasta

As much as I would like to apply total professionalism to this little web space of mine, a chain of unfortunate events has delayed this particular story, which I’m very excited about, for days. But now the demon-like jet lag is slowly but surely departing my body, and my dear boy is on his way to hopefully complete recovery, let me get back to the happier things in life. Like my satellite that comes with complete HD Food Network Channel. I wish I could take total credit for this dish, but it came from a little segment featuring a little Italian restaurant in the Lower East Side. I mean of course, why didn’t I think of this?! It’s the reincarnation of the Cajun dirty rice, reborn as an Italian in pasta form! Of course! Totally makes sense! Their sauce is a combination of liver puree and duck stock that delivers the brownish “dirt-look”. But why not make it even richer with this incredibly comforting and aromatic duck ragu that I make ALL the time.

Then came the effort the correct it. And then, TOTAL insomnia. As I tried pushing through the day without submitting to the brain-paralyzing exhaustion, the nights remained sleepless where I go in-and-out of consciousness and wake up feeling even more tired than the day before. The cherry on my cake was, on top of this build up of 14 days without proper sleep, that my oldest son, 11-year-old Maltese, Dumpling had to go through a completely unexpected surgery yesterday. If I haven’t properly introduced myself, this IS the top three on my worst-things-that-could-happen list. So all in all, the past week has been… really poor.

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A Bite of Le Marais

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It’s impossible to shake, like it’s wired into my every nerves, and rejecting whatever highly-caffeinated substance I have been shooting up my veins.  It has made it its personal quest to destroy my complexion, and put my blog, my kitchen and my dear dear camera on life-threatening danger.  Just know that I’m writing this while floating in a distorted, murky, brain-scrambling derangement.  Thoughts are bouncing off the surface of my consciousness like dimming fireflies, twirling and giggling, so close but out of my grasp.  “Wait, don’t go.  Why so shy?… let’s play…”

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