Misako’s Japanese Kitchen

Misako in her kitchen, Shobu, Japan, 2000 I’ve lost track of Misako. It happens, you know—we’re close to people for a short while, and then we grow apart because of distance, work, family or the natural passage of time. Eleven years ago, I stayed in Misako’s home and I explored Japan through an Oregon Sister […]

The Fish at the End of the Road

Valu Beach, below Tutuala, East Timor This is not here. This, above, is Valu Beach on the far tip of East Timor. “Here,” for me, right now, is Boulder, Colorado, beneath a fresh dump of snow. I could use a burst of Timorese warmth right now. I’m traveling to East Timor in mind tonight, thanks […]

$1.97 Cedar Picket Salmon

So this is what we did: we got ourselves a nice piece of wild-caught salmon, a decent bottle of white, and visions of a perfect fish on cedar. I thought of thyme in the garden and fresh lemons in the fridge. Rock salt from the Cambodian coast. A glug of olive oil. A pat of […]

Cambodian Sour Fish Soup

Khmer sour fish soup, Boeng Keng Kang Restaurant, Phnom Penh In Cambodia, sour fish soup with water grass is everyday food. It’s basic, it’s cheap, it’s easy to make and everyone eats it. A day without samlor machou trou kuon trey is almost like a day without rice–almost. But not quite. Our story on this simple […]

Lao Sour

En route to Boualapha recently, we stopped for a light roadside lunch of sour pickled fish (som paa) and sour pickled pork (som muu), both of which had been grilled in banana leaves. Each little packet opened to the most potent pate-like wedges (white fish, pink pork) with a firm consistency and an incredibly sour […]

Battambang Amok

Nary and Toot in their Battambang kitchen Meet Nuon Nary and Keo “Toot” Touch. They’re your hosts for an enlightening cooking class in Battambang. You can read about this lovely couple and their modest little venture in my latest post for The Faster Times. Then take a spin through the photos here and consider booking […]

Khmer BBQ on the Bayon Walls

We did something the other day that we hadn’t done in ages: we became tourists for a day. Just as the morning sun cast its butter-colored rays across Siem Reap, we caught a tuk-tuk to the temples. With one-day passes in our pockets, we joined the throngs at Angkor (my, how things have changed!). I’ve […]

Small Fish in a Big Soup

This is not the fish we had for breakfast. This happens to be a fish we had for lunch last year in a village along the Mekong. It was a big meaty snakehead, straight from the river, and our host, Monin, paid a pretty price for it. The fish above was not farmed. It had […]

The Rosi Recipes #5: Num Banh Chok

I’ve lost count of the cookbooks I brought back from Asia this time. I’m fairly certain my weight in books surpassed everything else in my luggage. Among that traveling library was a copy of From Spiders to Water Lilies: Creative Cambodian Cooking with Friends. It’s a beautiful book, which finally presents Khmer cuisine in a […]

A Taste of Costa Rica: Part II

Every morning begins with coffee, of course, and usually fruit. But the centerpiece of any Costa Rican breakfast is the spotted rooster, better known as gallo pinto. Rice and beans. “Gallo” means rooster, “pinto” means spotted, and the name refers to the dappled appearance of the dish when the white rice mixes with red or […]