Everyone is talking about ramen, and there’s a ramen shop in almost every East Bay neighborhood. But what about all the other delicious Asian soups out there with the same soul-warming potential? Here are ten soups (at eight venues) you might not have thought of.
My passion is exploring the connection between food and culture. I write regularly for Oakland and Alameda Magazines and Berkeleyside's NOSH. My blog, East Bay Ethnic Eats, gives me an excuse to track down the only Bay Area baker making fresh filo dough or learn to stuff a dried eggplant with help from a Turkish immigrant. Culture is the thread that ties together my several careers. As a sign language interpreter, educator and author, my study of Deaf culture has taken me around the world, where I fell madly in love with seed-strewn Danish bread, attacked platters of French shellfish with a small arsenal of tools and sampled a Japanese breakfast so fresh it wiggled. I'm also an epicurean concierge for Edible Excursions Japan town tours (that I lead in either English or ASL). And when I conduct in-depth cultural trainings for foreign workers being transferred to the Bay Area, I am sure to discuss the delights of doggie bags and the mystery of American restaurants serving ice water in the dead of winter. I can be found tweeting @EBEthniceats
Anna Mindess's Latest Posts
Chocoholics of the Bay Area, rejoice! A new tasting tour from Edible Excursions takes you behind the scenes of 5 Mission District chocolate hot spots, shares the neighborhood’s history, plus samples of drinking chocolate, chicken in mole, a cacao smoothie and exquisite hand-molded confections.
Get it quick before it’s gone! Handmade tofu and mochi sweets in San Jose’s Japantown. Two devoted husband and wife teams have been quietly keeping tradition alive for more than 25 years with the sweetest results. No preservatives, no automation, just loving hands and hard work.
Tet, the Vietnamese celebration of Lunar New Year, encompasses a range of traditional foods: from thick wedges of sticky rice filled with peppery pork to candied kumquats and nutty cookies. For the Year of the Horse, Son Tran, owner of Oakland’s aptly named Le Cheval Vietnamese restaurant, shares details of these essential holiday dishes and other cultural traditions.
Wheat, nuts, fish, dairy–seems like everyone is allergic to something these days. What’s a host to do? An illustrated guide to the difference between intolerance and allergy. And tips for cooking for those with these conditions (and having them leave sated –and alive.)
Louella Hill is a San Francisco, modern day, milk maid, who views cheesemaking as an art form that embraces the microbial world and can’t be rushed. She teaches classes around the SF Bay Area in how to make goat cheese, brie, ricotta, mascarpone and more.
Eerie, severed fingers made of chicken sausages, a Frankenstein avocado sandwich, a cheese-wrapped mummy — it must be Halloween and you can make these quick, creepy food creations to fill lunch boxes in the Japanese bento tradition.
While the Bay Area doesn’t get the swoon-inducing heat and humidity of Japan, Peru, India or the Philippines, we can still partake of their edible solutions for cooling relief. Some like it cold and icy with mounds of shaved ice doused with syrups, while others turn to peppers and spice to induce a natural cooling response.
Want to carve a rearing horse out of taro, tropical fish from carrots or a roaring dragon out of giant radishes? Watch Chef Jimmy Zhang, Master of the Chinese Art of Fruit and Vegetable carving in this video as he fashions an exquisite watermelon rose and shares the secrets of this ancient craft.
See how a dripping blob of bacteria and yeast makes fizzy, homemade kombucha and bonds a mother and daughter. Liberally illustrated with drawings of Kombucha Killers, Vessel Guide, Friendly Add-Ins, Dangers Signs and Brewing Steps.
Feast your eyes on the images in Sip. Savor. Share!, a local food-filled photography show sponsored by the urban art collective Femme Cartel. The show opens May 9 and runs through May 26 at the Mission’s Roll Up Gallery.