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Hmong Cooking on a Cold Winter Night

A melt-in-your-mouth pork with caramelized sweetness and the contrasting flavors of bell pepper and crisp green onion. Amy Vue, of the Rice Palace Restaurant in Milwaukee, says she grew up eating this dish.

It feels worlds away and ages ago, those crisp wintry days (and nights) we spent in Wisconsin shortly after Christmas. Jerry and I traveled north from my parents’ place to Wausau, to meet Jim, and to explore the world of Hmong cooking in America. Then south again, to Milwaukee, to taste the Hmong flavors found in local restaurants and markets. The story is now out in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel—and I’m thrilled to see this cuisine getting its due attention these days. I’ll be writing more about Hmong food in the coming months. And soon we’ll be hiking the hills of Laos and Vietnam, where my interest in this culture began.

5 replies on “Hmong Cooking on a Cold Winter Night”

Great article, and the picture of the pork makes me hungry! When I visit my family in Wisconsin, I start eating cheese curds right away, and from there it’s pot roast, beer, and brats. It’s fascinating to think that there’s a whole other food culture there.

Rowdy Chowgirl, I’m right there with you on cheese curds (and beer and brats….). It was amazing to walk into these Hmong homes and immediately feel tropical warmth (high thermostat) combined with the closeness of an extended family packed into one room, as found in Asia.

[…] Speaking of Wisconsin, and beer food, I’m really surprised my fellow Cheeseheads have not picked up on this: wafer-thin fried cheese, Yunnan style. See—it’s all crispy and bubbly, dipped in salt (and a teensy bit of sugar). Looks like a chip, but it’s CHEESE! Can you think of better bar food for America’s Dairyland? […]

[…] Speaking of Wisconsin, and beer food, I’m really surprised my fellow Cheeseheads have not picked up on this: wafer-thin fried cheese, Yunnan style. See—it’s all crispy and bubbly, dipped in salt (and a teensy bit of sugar). Read more. […]

[…] Speaking of Wisconsin, and beer food, I’m really surprised my fellow Cheeseheads have not picked up on this: wafer-thin fried cheese, Yunnan style. See—it’s all crispy and bubbly, dipped in salt (and a teensy bit of sugar). Looks like a chip, but it’s CHEESE! Can you think of better bar food for America’s Dairyland? […]

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