I continue to work to wrap up this first edition of The Albino Asian Cookbook. I’ve finished my final testing on the recipes. After almost a decade of experimenting, I’m finally happy with my General Tso’s Chicken, and I just put the finishing touches on the Seafood Curry, which is probably my favorite seafood recipe yet.
From this point on, it’s a lot of editing, registering an ISBN, and doing all the behind the scenes work to get the book launched.
Introduction: I rarely equate Thai chili and comfort food, but this dish has a rich, spicy chicken broth base and is loaded with onion, garlic, and ginger. Some people make chicken soup when they do not feel well, but I make ginger chicken instead. Serves 2-3. Continue reading “The Albino Asian Cookbook Preview: Ginger Chicken”
The Albino Asian Cookbook is a longstanding passion project of mine. Having grown up in the Philippines, I love Asian food, and I love to write. This project combines those affections.
This is a short collection of my favorite Asian recipes, dishes I’ve tinkered with over the last decade. This is quality over quantity. I eliminated a large number of recipes that I simply wasn’t satisfied with.
Several recipes are simple and easy, while a few are complex and labor intensive. Either way, these are the meals I find myself returning to year after year. Continue reading “Introducing The Albino Asian Cookbook”
“Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today…. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
Exodus 14:13, 14
My senior year of college, I promised God that I would go wherever in the world He wanted me to go on whatever mission, only I didn’t want to raise support. As a missionary kid, I grew up around fund development; I was familiar with church visits and courting potential supporters and funding letters and support banquets. I despised the lifestyle. God lead me to intern with Campus Crusade for Christ at my university, the University of Kansas, which meant I would be staying put and would have to raise support. I knew that I needed to trust God and take a step of faith.
The stress began when I told my grandmother about my decision. We share the same verbal impulsiveness, the same introversion, and the same disdain for popular opinion. When she was a child, the neighborhood kids used to call my grandma “Red Hot Pepper,” a name she acquired by fighting the boys who bullied her older brother. As an adult, she endured despite battles with diabetes and cancer. I figured that if there was anyone who could encourage me in my upcoming struggle with fundraising, it would be my Grandmother. Maybe she would even offer some advice about people to contact. I was wrong.
Over dinner, I gauged her response while I spoke about the internship. Her response was veiled. Grandmother worried that I would lose sight of writing as I tasted a career dedicated to people rather than creativity, a concern which made sense because she loved to paint. Rather than encouraging me about fundraising, she informed me that her church didn’t have any money to spare. It was then that the doubts took seed. Continue reading “Backed Against the Red Sea”
I was driving along a winding road, back home from work at an Ace Hardware in Asheville, North Carolina. The night was dark and cold, and there were still patches of ice skulking along the edges of the road. My mind was worn, my body was weary, my stomach growled from hunger. On the road I was filled with thoughts from the past and a melancholy longing.
It wasn’t so long ago that I was in college. Living in a house with other guys, boys learning to become men, and adult life seemed so distant. One year I slept every night on a mattress atop a wood floor—no bed frame, no box springs—but I barely noticed. I lived in a cycle of classes and college sports. There were late night parties in our house almost every week, though I was an introvert and slipped away from most of them, preferring the tranquility of my own thoughts and the posters on my bedroom wall to actual people.
I was intelligent, working smart more than I worked hard, always finding the easiest method that worked rather than drudging through old fashioned learning devices, catering to my strengths rather than polishing my flaws. I was able to attain a high GPA and work a part-time job my senior year, all while managing to play more video games than ever before. I ate and exercised and slept when I wanted. Most of all, I was carefree. My biggest concerns were walking to class in snow or ice and an Arabic teacher who berated her students. My only financial commitment was maintaining the old Nissan 200sx I drove; I didn’t worry about paying for the food I ate, the house I stayed in, or my college tuition—my parents were tending to my needs.
Then that sense of security ended as graduation loomed. Suddenly I was to be responsible, to pay for all my bills and figure out my healthcare. My future job, rather than my parents, was to be my source of income, my livelihood, and there was a weight that crashed onto my life. I was my own provider. I didn’t know how, but I learned, slowly, with the unsteadiness of a toddler learning walk. Continue reading “My Provider”